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Middle Age Heart Risk Could Become Dementia Risk Later

By Rodney Rafols , Feb 25, 2017 01:06 AM EST
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Middle age for most people is the time that health risks begin to appear. Heart risk is the most common that can come at that time. Middle age heart risk could become dementia risk later in life as well.

Vascular system health is an important factor in brain health. This has been explained by Rebecca F. Gottesman, M.D., Ph.D., lead researcher and associate professor at John Hopkins University. The study has shown that dementia risk grows as a person gets older. This grew even more likely for people who have heart disease in midlife.

The study began in 1987. Around 15,744 people from four communities in the US have participated in it. Of those, around 1,516 of them developed dementia later on. Some of the possible causes of dementia have been found to be smoking, hypertension and diabetes.

Gottesman has found that diabetes can raise the risk of dementia in almost the same way as the genetic cause for Alzheimer's disease. Women have lower risk of getting dementia than men. Smoking poses a great risk in producing dementia later in life, according to the American Heart Association's site.

People who have the gene for Alzheimer's is already aware of the risk it carries on brain health. However, those who have heart disease are not as aware of the possibility of dementia happening later on, Dr. Gottesman has observed. She has advised those who are at risk to quit smoking and reduce weight in order to minimize the risks of getting dementia.

The study has cautioned though that it has not yet found whether treating heart disease would be able to reduce dementia risk, as Science Daily reports. The study is a long term study though so it would be found out later on if reducing heart disease risk would also mean reducing dementia risk. Other data from other studies might be able to add to what is already known about dementia.

Heart disease can already be an issue for many people. An added risk to it would be dementia. Middle age heart risk could become dementia risk later. A study has found that food additives could be harmful to digestive cells.

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