Alzheimer’s Disease and Lifestyle Factors

alzheimer's disease
Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive brain disorder that affects a person’s memory. Sufferers may not remember familiar people, places, and things, or find it difficult to carry out simple tasks. Most people with this disorder shows symptoms in their mid-60s. Alzheimer’s is the leading cause of dementia, which is the loss of cognitive functioning and behavioral abilities.

Experts don’t completely understand what causes Alzheimer’s in most people. Genetic mutation, however, is usually the cause for those with early-onset of the disorder. Late-onset disease comes from brain changes that occur over the years. Care experts from note that health and environmental factors may also play a part in increasing or reducing the risk of developing the disorder.

Beyond Genetics

Studies suggest different factors beyond genetics may contribute to the development of the disease. There is a relationship between the decline in cognitive abilities and vascular conditions (stroke, heart disease, and hypertension). The same is also true for metabolic conditions like obesity and diabetes. Further studies will be beneficial in learning if reducing risk factors for such conditions may reduce the risk of the said disorder.

Other Lifestyle Factors

A study presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in France suggests that lifestyle factors contribute to half of the disease’s cases. These include smoking, low education, depression, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and too little exercise in mid-life. Researchers note that the biggest impact on cases is low education, which can be a sign of many factors that harms the minds.

Role of Healthy Habits

Apart from a balanced diet and regular exercise, social engagement, and mentally stimulating habits are linked to healthy living and aging. These might help reduce the risk of cognitive decline or development of Alzheimer’s diseases, but further research is needed. The same study suggests that curbing the said lifestyle risk factors could prevent millions of cases of the brain disorder.

Sufferers of Alzheimer’s disease need patience, understanding, and medical care. This is because instances that involve memory loss are difficult and heartbreaking for families and caregivers.