According to a recent study in the Netherlands, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease may not be an inevitable part of aging. The study found that despite the risk factors for decline, 100-year-old children still have higher cognitive abilities.
This six-year study of centenarians (people over 100 years old) found that despite high levels of brain markers (amyloid beta) associated with cognitive decline, these centenarians are still very Keen and perform well in cognitive tests. The researchers concluded that these elderly subjects may have a restorative mechanism that can protect them from memory loss.
In fact, they say that once you pass your 100th birthday, the risk of dementia may not necessarily increase.
Dr. Henne Holstege of the University of Amsterdam School of Medicine in the Netherlands who participated in the study said: “People between 70 and 95 years old face the same risk of dementia as people between 1
These results bring hope to some people. Although Alzheimer’s and Alzheimer’s are more likely to occur with age, this is not everyone’s fate.
“Age is the number one risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease, but these findings indicate that despite old age, centenarians may still grow vigorously,” Will Cornell Medical University and Alzheimer’s, New York State Said Dr. Richard Isaacson, director of the disease prevention clinic. The Presbyterian Hospital responsible for this research.
Some experts believe that although these findings reveal aging and cognitive function, it is still a complex phenomenon that requires more exploration.
Isaacson said: “Dementia and Alzheimer’s are often multifactorial diseases, which means that genetics, age, environment, lifestyle behaviors and medical diseases are mixed together, which can cause a person to move towards or get rid of cognitive ability. decline.”
Researchers are still not sure why some people are protected from cognitive decline, while others survived. Researchers suggest that some protective factors related to cognitive performance may be education, frequent cognitive activities and even IQ. But there is more to play.
Dr. Gayatri David, a neurologist and psychiatrist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York, said: “Even in old age, there may be protective immune and cardiovascular risk factors that help maintain brain flexibility and cognition. Features.”
The role of brain markers analyzed in this study in memory, including a sticky plaque called amyloid beta that is usually found in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients, is now aroused by experts. Dispute. The different existence of these markers in this study further aggravated this complex process.
Isaacson said: “It is important to understand that the presence of amyloid in the brain does not absolutely mean that a person will develop dementia.” “There are other factors and lifestyles that can make us resilient and resistant to cognitive decline. force.”
Importantly, this study has some caveats. For example, brain markers were only analyzed in 44 participants, so the results of the study may not be applicable to everyone, so more research is needed to understand the complexity of aging.
Other studies have also looked at ways to prevent cognitive decline. According to the 2020 Lancet Committee report, based on modifiable risk factors, 40% of dementia cases can be prevented. Some of these previous studies have successfully improved cognitive function and reduced risk.
A study conducted by the Isaacson team of the Alsaheimer’s Prevention Clinic found that it can improve cognitive function and reduce risk, especially among those who follow lifestyle changes, such as exercise, nutrition, Vascular risks and medications.
Despite more discoveries and debates, experts still recommend maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet, exercise, and medical treatment to maintain awareness during aging.
Isaacson said: “For people at risk, it’s important to see a doctor regularly and consider cognitive screening tests.”
Alexis E. Carrington, MD, is a dermatology researcher at the University of California, Davis, and a contributor to the ABC News Medical Department.