The BBC is reporting that an international study in The Lancet has identified nine key lifestyle risk factors associated with developing dementia.
The Lancet study suggests that one in three cases of dementia could be avoided with some subtle changes to lifestyle habits and with more focus on looking after brain health. The report highlights the dangers including obesity, smoking and high blood pressure which, if avoided, lower the threat of developing dementia by more than a third. This study is the first-time scientists have been able to prove how much of dementia is preventable.
The nine lifestyle factors linked to an increased risk of dementia are:
- Mid-life hearing loss – responsible for 9% of the risk
- Failing to complete secondary education – 8%
- Smoking – 5%
- Failing to seek early treatment for depression – 4%
- Physical inactivity – 3%
- Social isolation – 2%
- High blood pressure – 2%
- Obesity – 1%
- Type 2 diabetes – 1%
These nine risk factors add up to 35% but are modifiable; the other 65% of dementia risk is not influenceable and is beyond an individual’s control.
Source: Lancet Commission on dementia prevention, intervention and care
To read the full BBC article, click here
Author: Tim Davies LLB