by The Pulitzer Some researchers estimate that dementia will increase by 100% between the years 2001 and 2020 in the United States. Anything that ca
|Stress May Increase Risk For Alzheimer's Disease - Worldnews.com|
by The Pulitzer
Some researchers estimate that dementia will increase by 100% between the years 2001 and 2020 in the United States. Anything that can reduce dementia disease risk, or delay the age of onset is important.
Now a new study gives us some suggestions for diet and lifestyle changes that could bring down the incidence of dementia. Things like cutting the rates of diabetes and depression, encouraging education and upping the intake of fruits and veggies.
While no one yet knows the precise cause of dementia, experts have identified a few risks - heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes and high cholesterol - all well within your control.
This study is the first to estimate the advantages of eliminating various risk factors for dementia. While this type of research can't determine cause and effect, it can suggest direction for public health programs.
Dementia, a medical term often misused, isn't so much a disease, but a descriptive term for a collection of symptoms that can be caused by any number of disorders that affect the brain.
It is not a normal part of the aging process, though it is common in the elderly. Having memory loss (admittedly a common symptom of dementia) isn't enough; doctors look for two or more brain functions being impaired without loss of consciousness. And the impairment must be severe enough to impact normal daily activities and relationships.
This most recent dementia research included 1,433 healthy adults (over age 65) living in the south of France. Subjects underwent cognitive testing by a neurologist at the start of the study and again in years two, four and seven in order to judge any dementia and/or mild cognitive impairment. Blood pressure and blood samples were also taken at these visits, and tests of intelligence and to identify any depressive symptoms were also administered. When the study began and during all follow up sessions, subjects provided details on their medical history as well as information on diet, education, monthly income, alcohol consumption and use of tobacco.
At the end of the study, there were 405 cases of dementia and/or mild cognitive impairment.
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