What increases your risk for Alzheimer’s? Learn about the connection between dementia risk and your blood sugar and cholesterol.
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the fifth leading cause of death in U.S. adults age 65 and older. Some studies suggest there’s a link between AD and vascular risk burden from age 55 and on. However, it’s unknown whether this link is present in younger individuals.
A recent study from Boston University (BU) explores the association between AD and vascular measures. According to their results, high glucose levels, low HDL cholesterol, and high triglyceride levels from age 35 are related to AD later in life. Their study appears in Alzheimer’s and Dementia.
Dr. Katy Bray, the public engagement manager at Alzheimer’s Research UK and who was not part of the study, explained the connection:
- “Many people know high cholesterol is a risk factor for heart disease and other health conditions, but they don’t realize it’s a risk factor for dementia too. To keep the brain healthy as we age, the best evidence is to eat a balanced diet, not smoke, drink within recommended guidelines, exercise regularly, and keep blood pressure and cholesterol in check.”
BU researchers used data from 4,932 participants of the Framingham Heart Study. They underwent nine examinations every four years until they reached age 70. At each examination, researchers measured HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, blood glucose, body mass index (BMI), systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and the number of cigarettes smoked per day. They also went through cognitive assessments from the second examination.
According to their data analysis, there is an inverse relationship between AD and HDL and a link between higher triglyceride levels and AD. Moreover, there was a significant link between high blood glucose and AD. However, they found no association between AD and LDL cholesterol, BMI, smoking, or blood pressure.
The study researchers conclude that maintaining healthy HDL, triglyceride, and glucose levels at an early age may lower the risk for AD. However, there are certain limitations to their study, and their findings may not translate to nonwhite demographics or accurately reflect age-specific trends. Still, by eating less sugar and processed foods and working out regularly, you’ll be benefiting every organ in one way or another.
While more research is necessary to confirm the study results, the BU study shows that there is a connection between blood sugar, cholesterol, and dementia risk. By increasing your HDL (“good”) cholesterol, lowering your triglycerides, and reducing your blood glucose, you’ll be improving both your heart and brain health.
In addition, you can give your health an extra boost by taking supplements like L-arginine Plus. Its ingredients can efficiently promote circulation, blood pressure health cholesterol health, and more. Give your health the support it deserves by leading a healthy life and taking L-arginine Plus.