Research says that one in three Alzheimer's cases can be prevented
- 14 Jul
Research from the University of Cambridge has found that one in three cases of Alzheimer's disease worldwide is preventable.
The research says that the main risk factors of Alzheimer's is lack of exercise, smoking, depression and poor education, reports the BBC.
Alzheimer's Research UK said age was still the biggest risk factor.
The research found that a third of Alzheimer's cases could be linked to lifestyle factors that can be modified such as smoking and lack of exercise.
They found that by reducing each risk factor by 10%, nearly nine million cases of the disease could be prevented by 2050.
Prof Carol Brayne, from the Institute of Public Health at the University of Cambridge, said: "Although there is no single way to treat dementia, we may be able to take steps to reduce our risk of developing dementia at older ages. We know what many of these factors are, and that they are often linked. Simply tackling physical inactivity, for example, will reduce levels of obesity, hypertension and diabetes, and prevent some people from developing dementia. As well as being healthier in old age in general, it's a win-win situation."
Dr Simon Ridley, head of research at charity Alzheimer's Research UK, said there was still much to discover about the disease. "While age is the biggest risk factor for most cases of Alzheimer's, there are a number of lifestyle and general health factors that could increase or decrease a person's chances of developing the disease. However, we still do not fully understand the mechanisms behind how these factors are related to the onset of Alzheimer's. As there is still no certain way to prevent Alzheimer's, research must continue to build the strongest evidence around health and environmental factors to help individuals reduce their risk. This new study also highlights that many cases are not due to modifiable risk factors which underlines the need to drive investment into new treatment research."
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