Alzheimer's Disease

Reducing Your Risk of Alzheimer’s

What is the second most feared disease next to cancer?  You’ve probably guessed correctly if you said Alzheimer’s Disease.

Alzheimer’s is a form of dementia characterized by a loss of memory, cognitive ability and behaviour.  There is no cure for this degenerative brain disease and there is no known cause.  However, research into Alzheimer’s has shown there are factors that increase a person’s risk at being diagnosed with the disease.

Some of the risk factors associated with Alzheimer’s include age, family history and genetics.  Other risk factors associated with lifestyle have also been linked to Alzheimer’s and without a cure it is imperative people take preventative measures to reduce the risk of being diagnosed with the disease.

Recent studies have linked an increase risk of Alzheimer’s with diabetes.  People with high blood sugar have been shown to be twice as likely to develop the disease as those with normal glucose levels.  Those people treated with insulin may develop an insulin resistance that can lead to complications associated with diabetes.  This may harm the brain cells directly or the blood vessels carrying oxygen rich and nutrient rich blood to the brain.

Keeping a close eye on diet to control blood sugar may ultimately reduce the risk associated with Alzheimer’s.

Other research has also shown that lack of physical activity may increase the risk associated with Alzheimer’s and other diseases.

Regular physical activity and exercise not only improves your heart but your brain.  Having an increased flow of blood and oxygen has been shown to benefit brain cells, thus reducing the risks associated with Alzheimer’s.

Researchers in Japan have also shown a connection between high cholesterol and Alzheimer’s.  People suffering from high cholesterol were more likely to have brain plaques when compared to people with normal or lower cholesterol levels.

Having your cholesterol checked regularly and controlling its level helps maintain the health of your heart and blood vessels reduces blood pressure and minimizes risk associated with Alzheimer’s.

While the exact cause of this brain disease is not fully understood, continued research has shown making changes to lifestyle and taking certain preventative measures associated with healthier living can reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s.

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