Are You at Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease? Part 3

by on July 24th, 2010
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Previously published on Factoidz
If you have had head trauma sometime in your life, you may be at risk for Alzheimer’s disease. You may also be at risk for Alzheimer’s disease if you have heart and vascular problems. It’s quite easy to see the heart/head connection when you learn that up to 25 percent of the blood that circulates from your heart goes to oxygenate and nourish your brain cells.

Heart and vascular connection to Alzheimer’s disease

If you have vascular problems, you may not only be at risk for stroke, diabetes, heart disease, hypertension and elevated cholesterol, but you may also be at risk for vascular dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. You may be even more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease if you have already had a stroke, and the other conditions mentioned above. People who have diabetes, heart and vascular problems are more likely to develop the plaques and tangles that are associated with Alzheimer’s symptoms.

Head trauma and Alzheimer’s disease

Head trauma has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease; therefore, if you have suffered severe head trauma sometime in your life, you may be at risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease at some point in your life. Therefore, it is important that you protect your brain when you drive or ride in a car. Wear your seat belt at all times. When riding a bicycle, motorcycle, ATV, or some other vehicle, be sure to wear a helmet to protect your brain from trauma. When working on high places, (like roofing or window washing of high buildings) be sure to prevent falls by wearing protective restraints.

Diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease

Lowering your risk for Alzheimer’s disease can be done by making some healthy lifestyle changes that will lower your risk of the diseases and conditions related to the onset of Alzheimer’s dementia. For instance, keeping your body fit and healthy with regular exercise and a healthy diet can prevent weight gain and Type 2 diabetes. Tobacco and excess consumption of alcohol can also have an effect on your heart and vascular systems, so it is important to avoid using tobacco products and to only ingest alcohol in moderation, if at all.

Nationality and Alzheimer’s disease

Your nationality may also increase your risk for Alzheimer’s disease. African-Americans and Latinos are more at risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease than people of other ethnic groups, because they have higher risk factors for vascular disease, heart disease and diabetes. In fact, African-Americans are twice as likely as Caucasians to develop Alzheimer’s disease, and Latinos are about one and one-half times as likely as whites to develop the disease.

If you have concerns about your state of health and your risks for developing Alzheimer’s disease, consult with your doctor.

Read part 1

Read part 2

Photo credit: Wikipedia


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