As the largest resource of information specific to women's brain health, we are sure you will find what you are looking for, and promise that you will discover new information.
Published on: July 3, 2013
by Cody Chan for The Almagest:
Could cholesterol play a role in more than just heart health? Yes, say some scientists, who think that high blood cholesterol levels may also contribute to the development of dementia in older adults. Not all studies support this claim, but one study does suggest a link between cholesterol levels and mental functioning in seniors.
University of California researchers recruited more than 1,000 postmenopausal women who had just completed a 4-year study of heart disease. Blood cholesterol levels and information on medication use – including recent use of cholesterol-lowering drugs called “statins” – were analyzed from previously collected data. In addition, each woman completed a cognitive function test designed to measure memory and concentration.
The researchers were looking for – and found – a correlation between the women’s cholesterol levels and their scores on the memory test. Women with the lowest blood cholesterol levels tended to do better on the cognitive function test than did those with the highest cholesterol levels.
When the researchers compared the scores of women who took statin drugs with those who did not, statin users had a slight edge, but the difference wasn’t large enough to draw a firm conclusion.
Scientists are fairly sure that some forms of age-related dementia result from the same type of blood vessel damage that leads to heart disease. Because cholesterol affects the health of heart blood vessels, say the scientists, it makes sense that it would have some effect on the health of blood vessels in the brain as well. In fact, it’s possible that both heart disease and dementia result from a poorly running cardiovascular system.
This study included only elderly women, most of whom were white, so the results cannot necessarily be applied to men, younger women, or women of other races. It’s also not clear from this study what role, if any, statins might play in reducing the risk of age-related memory loss.
Nevertheless, keeping blood cholesterol levels in check is clearly a smart move for everyone, given the solid link between blood cholesterol levels and heart disease. And stay tuned, say the authors, as the potential link between cholesterol and brain function continues to develop.
Recent findings suggested the serotonin system may be an effective target for prevention and treatment of mild cognitive impairment. “Now that we have more evidence that serotonin is a chemical that appears affected early in...
By the time you start losing your memory, it’s almost too late. That’s because the damage to your brain associated with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) may already have been going on for as long as twenty years....
For decades, the only way to officially diagnose Alzheimer’s disease was by analysing a patient’s brain during a postmortem. More recently, physicians have been able to use positron emission tomography scans of the brains of living people...
The material presented through the Think Tank feature on this website is in no way intended to replace professional medical care or attention by a qualified practitioner. WBHI strongly advises all questioners and viewers using this feature with health problems to consult a qualified physician, especially before starting any treatment. The materials provided on this website cannot and should not be used as a basis for diagnosis or choice of treatment. The materials are not exhaustive and cannot always respect all the most recent research in all areas of medicine.