Risk Factors and Risk Reduction

Risk factors of Alzheimer’s disease

  • Age – After the age of 65, the risk for Alzheimer’s doubles every 5 years
  • Family History – Those who have an immediate relative are more likely to develop the
  • Genetics – There are certain genes that influence whether or not an individual is likely to
    develop the disease
  • Head Injury – There is a link between head injury and future risk of developing disease
  • Heart-Head Connection – The heart is responsible for pumping blood through blood
    vessels to the brain causing a link between brain health and heart health

Ways to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease

  • Eating healthy by limiting the intake of sugar and saturated fat as well as eating plenty
    of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Two diets that have been studied and could be
    beneficial are the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet and the
    Mediterranean diet. Both emphasize fruits and vegetables, whole grain, fish and nuts
  • Staying socially active by maintaining strong social connections. For example, pursue
    social activities that are meaningful to you, such as volunteering or planning activities
    with family and friends
  • Avoid tobacco and excessive alcohol
  • Regularly exercising can be beneficial by increasing blood flow. Exercise doesn’t have to
    be strenuous; adding a daily walk into your routine can be very beneficial
  • Mentally stimulating activities and cognitive training, such as completing a jigsaw
    puzzles, playing card games that make you think strategically, or taking a class at a local
    college, community center, or online
  • Keep blood pressure at healthy levels by exercising, reducing the amount of sodium in
    your diet, and reducing your stress
  • Avoiding head traumas by protecting your head. For example, you can decrease your
    chances of head injuries by wearing a seatbelt and using a helmet when needed