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Researchers mentioned seven rules to protect the brain against Alzheimer's disease and dementia

The longer we live, the greater the chance of surviving Alzheimer's disease. According to the statistics, the incidence has increased sharply since 80 years and in 85 Alzheimer's covers every third. Imagine you're 79 and someone asks a question: you don't want to live tomorrow? This psychological test is used by specialists in aging and life extension research to show that the absolute majority of people want to live at any age. That is why the fight against the diseases of & # 39; old age & # 39; no less important than looking for an effective cancer treatment.

But of course it is best to completely avoid the disease. That is why scientists and doctors, together with the development of medicines, are looking for methods to prevent diseases. Experts analyze the lifestyle, health status of large groups of people around the world and their incidence rates for this or that disease. Recently in a renowned international scientific medical journal Limits in neurology An overview of Alzheimer's prevention data dementia (Dementia). A large group of scientists from From china. United States. United Kingdom. Israel and From Canada.


To understand at what stage and who can help compliance with the rules (see below), it is important to know what prevention is real, explain the authors of the article. The World Health Organization identifies three types of prophylaxis:

– primary prevention is intended to prevent the occurrence of the disease;

– The secondary agent is designed to recognize the disease at an early stage when the symptoms did not even occur. The task is to stop or slow down the progression of the disease. This type of prophylaxis includes screenings. That is, checks and examinations of people at risk of developing a disease;

– Tertiary prevention is applied when a person is already sick. In this case, the aim is to prevent the progression of the disease, serious complications and disability.

Total: unlike prevailing ideas, prevention is possible even when someone is already sick. Let's say he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. This means that the rules described below can absolutely help anyone. If you do not avoid the disease, at least reduce the risk of serious complications.


National Institute for Aging Studies (US) and Alzheimer's & # 39; s Association in 2011 we developed a model that distinguishes three stages of the disease. In the first stage, the patient does not have the least external symptoms of the disease, while precursors of the imminent catastrophe already occur in the brain. The process of accumulation of amyloid plaques and distorted tauprotein, which then brain cells literally choke neurons. In all honesty we note: there are still many mysteries for researchers. In particular, amyloid clots, plaques using the positron emission tomography method of the brain, can be found in many people who are already 40 years old. But luckily Alzheimer's does not develop at all. That is why the early diagnosis of the disease remains one of the biggest problems.

In the second phase of Alzheimer's disease, "soft" cognitive impairment appears. The destructive processes in the brain are already in full swing, but the problems with memory, thinking and speech are not that strong. A person can serve himself independently.

Dementia takes place in the third phase. Dementia. Severe brain disruption. A person no longer remembers who he is (although individual "enlightenments" are possible), does not recognize family members. Over time & # 39; weakened & # 39; the brain so much that the patient not only loses memory, but also the ability to move, swallow, breathe …


Scientists call these seven rules & # 39; customizable risk factors for Alzheimer's and dementia & # 39 ;. What does it mean: we can manage them ourselves. Change your life and the lives of your loved ones to reduce the risk of serious neurodegenerative brain diseases. Do you think this is comparable to the banal rules for a healthy lifestyle? Is possible. But for persuasiveness, the researchers performed calculations and indicated: what role does some factor play in the development of Alzheimer's disease and how many people could save sheby following each line.

1. Stop smoking.

Worldwide, 4.7 million cases of Alzheimer's disease are primarily associated with smoking, the researchers said. How can this be? To put it simply, the harmful toxins that invade the body during smoking cause inflammation of the walls of blood vessels. Including the brain. As a result, the most dangerous amyloid plaques that cause neuronal neuronal cells accumulate quickly.

If you reduce the world's smoking level by 25%, about 1 million people can be saved from Alzheimer's, scientists say.

Everything that affects the heart and blood vessels also increases the risk of Alzheimer's disease. This is overweight and hypertension and increased

Everything that affects the heart and blood vessels also increases the risk of Alzheimer's disease. This is overweight and hypertension, and increased "bad cholesterol"view: Vladimir VELENGURIN

2. Get rid of overweight and obese in middle age (after 40 years).

We are talking about people with a body mass index (BMI) above 30, scientists specify. Recall: to calculate the BMI, take your height in meters, squared. And then divide the body weight in kg by the resulting figure.

About 677,000 cases of Alzheimer's in the world are primarily associated with being overweight, according to the study.

– It appeared that there is a close link between Alzheimer's disease and cardiovascular disease: everything that affects the heart and blood vessels badly also increases the risk of Alzheimer's disease. This is overweight and high blood pressure and high "bad cholesterol," said "KP" Scientific director of the Center for Population Health and Aging, Duke University (North Carolina, USA), doctor of sciences, professor Anatoly Yashin. – There is even a vascular theory of Alzheimer's disease: microcapillaries, small blood vessels with aging or as a result of an unhealthy lifestyle become less elastic, stiffer, begin to break down and this leads to an increase in blood permeability brain barrier that protects our brain.

In particular, due to the decrease of such protection, the processes that cause Alzheimer's disease begin to accelerate.

3. Exercise, don't lead to a sedentary lifestyle.

4.3 million cases of Alzheimer's disease are associated with a lack of exercise, scientists are terrified. This causes blood circulation in the brain. And this means that there is a higher risk of accumulating hazardous substances that can be washed away with blood flow.

Council: Today's gold international standard is considered at least 150 minutes of physical activity per week, or at least 30 minutes 5 days per week. And the best is 40 to 60 minutes every day. The safest way to move is to walk cardiologically, that is, as quickly as possible, but so that there is no shortness of breath.

4. Improve your education.

A low level of education contributes to the development of Alzheimer's disease among 6.5 million people around the world, scientists say (how to judge how high their education is is not specified).

– For the prevention of Alzheimer's disease, it is important to create the so-called cognitive reserve. This can be achieved through activities that lead to the formation of new connections between neurons and stimulate the formation of new nerve cells (they have very little in an adult, but still), the professor explains Yashin. – And the most powerful tool for creating a cognitive reserve is simply gaining unknown knowledge and skills. For example learning a foreign language, attending exciting educational lectures or watching them on TV, mastering old age computer skills, learning to dance, drawing, modeling – everything that requires us to remember and to remember, to be creative – all this helps to make connections to create and strengthen. between neurons.

5. Time to diagnose and treat diabetes.

About 825,000 cases of Alzheimer's disease are associated with diabetes, the study authors write.

"The relationship between Alzheimer's disease and type 2 diabetes is being studied, there is still no consensus among scientists," says Anatoly Yashin. – It is not entirely clear what the cause is and what the consequence is, but one of the hypotheses looks like this. In patients with type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance develops, that is to say insensitivity to the hormone insulin, as a result of which glucose is poorly absorbed on the periphery, ie outside the brain. Until recently it was assumed that insulin does not affect metabolism (processing and assimilation. – Auth.) Glucose in the brain. But recently discovered complex mechanisms by which insulin resistance, as it turned out, increases the chances of developing Alzheimer's disease. As a result, this disease even had a different name: "type 3 diabetes".

6. Pay attention to the treatment of depression.

This disease causes at least 3.6 million cases of Alzheimer's worldwide, scientists warn.

The presence of depression in itself indicates that there are certain defects in the brain, which may make neurons more vulnerable to harmful processes. Long-term observations of large groups of people show that depression is an important risk factor that increases the likelihood of Alzheimer's disease.

7. Normalize blood pressure and prevent exacerbation of middle-aged hypertension (after 40 years).

According to the study authors, Alzheimer's patients earn 1.7 million patients due to untreated hypertension. Increased pressure not only threatens heart attacks and strokes, but also the development of dementia, scientists emphasize.

For reference: as a person less than 65 years old then his siarticleThe oral (upper) pressure must be between 120 and 130 mm Hg, diastolic (lower) – 70-80 mm Hg. For individuals older than 65 years target pressure 130 – 140 upper and 70 – 80 lower. This is what you want to strive for. If there is too much, you should consult a doctor and take measures to reach pressure standards for your age, says KP, cardiologist, director of the Institute of Personalized Medicine, Sechenov University, MD Phillip Phillip Kopylov.


Another long-term 16-year study called Lifestyle for Brain Health, LIBRA (lifestyle for maintaining brain health, Dutch). Showed that factors that reduce the risk of dementia are: high mental alertness, a Mediterranean diet with lots of vegetables, fruit and fish, eating unrefined vegetable oil and low alcohol consumption.

At the same time, the researchers identified conditions that increase the risk of Alzheimer's: cardiovascular disease, low physical activity, diabetes, high levels of "bad" cholesterol, smoking, obesity, depression, kidney disease.

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