Obesity epidemic linked to rise in Alzheimer's

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Alzheimer, Body mass index, Alzheimer's disease

Reducing obesity among the elderly may also help to cut down the
currently rising numbers of women who develop Alzheimer's disease,
suggests a new study.

Reducing obesity among the elderly may also help to cut down the currently rising numbers of women who develop Alzheimer's disease, suggests a new study.

Being overweight when elderly appears to be a risk factor for dementia, particularly Alzheimer's, report Swedish researchers in this week's Archives of Internal Medicine​.

Overweight is epidemic in Western societies but while sizes have been growing, so has Alzheimer's, which is one of the diseases increasing most rapidly in this age group. The team investigated the relationship between BMI (body mass index) and dementia risk in 226 women and 166 men who were 70 years old or older and healthy. They controlled for factors such as blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, cigarette smoking, socioeconomic status, and treatment for hypertension.

During the 18-year follow-up, 93 participants were diagnosed as having dementia. Women who developed dementia between ages 79 and 88 years were overweight, with a higher average BMI at age 70 years, 75 years, and 79 years compared with nondemented women.

A higher degree of overweight was also observed in women who developed Alzheimer's disease. For every 1.0 increase in BMI at age 70 years, risk of the disease increased by 36 per cent. These associations were not found in men however, said the team from Göteborg University in Sweden. This may be because women generally survive longer than men, explained the researchers. They added that more men in the study would be needed to see the difference.

Related topics: Research, Suppliers

Related news

Follow us

Products

View more

Webinars