Proof dementia risk can be reduced

Every so slowly, there is more and more research emerging to support that lifestyle factors can prevent dementia, as well as slow down the degeneration of dementia after someone is diagnosed. The study below is worth a read, and was highlighted on our commercial television channels in Australia last week.

From my perspective this is perfect timing as I am in Geneva for the first WHO Ministerial Conference on dementia, and I hope to provide a message drugs for a cure are not all that people with or without dementia want. Of course we want a cure, but we also want better care. It also makes eminent sense that the approach in this study will benefit those if us with a diagnosis.

As Mahatma Gandhi said;

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.

Proof that dementia risk can be reduced by improving lifestyle

Doctors have the first conclusive proof that changes to lifestyle among the over-60s can slow mental decline – raising the prospects of dementia prevention programmes that cut your risk of the disease.

Findings from a two-year study of more than 1,200 60 to 77-year-olds in Finland, published in The Lancet medical journal, reveal that a group who received thorough advice about diet, regular exercise sessions, brain training and health check-ups performed better in cognitive tests than a group who received only the standard medical advice.

The results are significant, as it is believed to be the first randomised and controlled trial to conclusively demonstrate that keeping the body healthy in later life also benefits the brain.

The participants will now be followed up over seven years to see if those who received the intensive healthcare intervention are less likely to develop dementia.

Overall scores in mental tests after two years were 25 per cent better in the group who received the intensive health programme. In particular areas they were even more striking.

Scores for executive functioning – the brain’s ability to organise thought processes – were 83 per cent higher in the intervention group, while mental processing speeds were 150 per cent higher. All participants in the trial were judged to have a high risk of dementia at the start.

Read the full article here…

 

5 thoughts on “Proof dementia risk can be reduced

  1. Pingback: Proof dementia risk can be reduced | Dementia Caregivers Blog - Hope and Harmony -

  2. Will try to follow the webcast tomorrow, Kate. You know you have the most important message to five with so much ignorance still out there, even amongst some of those around you, tomorrow, however charming and genuine the UK health secretary might appear!

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