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Are You At Risk For Alzheimer’s Because Of These 9 Factors?

Do your lifestyle and physical conditions contribute to the chance you will contract Alzheimer's disease? According to a recent overview of research, up to two-thirds of all Alzheimer's cases may be due to nine conditions. Although some of these are factors are hard to change, there are others that you can take steps you to change – and reduce your risk of Alzheimer's.

A meta-analysis of Alzheimer's risk factors published in the “Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry” identified nine factors that significantly contribute to risk of Alzheimer's. The factors pertain to biochemistry, psychology, pre-existing diseases and lifestyle choices.

The researchers identified obesity, carotid artery disease, high blood pressure, depression, frailty, low levels of education, high levels of the amino acid homocysteine, and smoking, as well as type 2 diabetes in the Asian population, according to an article in Time Magazine. The conclusions of this study imply that specific lifestyle changes in the population could reduce cases of Alzheimer's, which is the leading form of dementia in seniors. The study also identified possible ways of lowering Alzheimer's risk, such as by drinking coffee, consuming enough of vitamins C, E and folate, NSAIDS (anti-inflammation drugs), statins (cholesterol-lowering drugs), blood pressure medications and estrogen supplements to help reduce the risk of Alzheimer's.

Nevertheless, as reported by HealthDay, the study's authors caution that the research shows only correlation and not causation; they do not know how mitigating these risk factors or implementing lifestyle changes would actually affect the population at risk. They did their research by analyzing data from a pool of 323 other studies.

Whether or not there is a direct cause and effect relationship between these nine factors and Alzheimer's, taking steps to reduce their impact will allow for a generally healthier life. This study gives people yet another incentive to be conscious of their health and lifestyle. Eating healthier options and exercising regularly while avoiding bad habits like smoking will improve your quality of life. Alzheimer's impacts one in 14 people over the age of 65, and there is currently no cure for the disease.

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