High cholesterol, BP can lead to memory loss
CAUSE FOR WORRY: High BP + High cholesterol can equal to cognitive and memory problems
A study has found that people who have higher cardiovascular risk are more likely to have lower cognitive function and a faster rate of overall cognitive decline compared to those with the lowest risk of heart disease.
Higher cardiovascular risk is also associated with a 10-year faster rate of overall cognitive decline in both men and women compared to those with lower cardiovascular risk.
For the study, 3,486 men and 1,341 women with an average age of 55 underwent cognitive tests three times over 10 years. The tests measured reasoning, memory, fluency and vocabulary. Participants received a Framingham risk score that is used to predict 10-year risk of a cardiovascular event. It is based on age, sx, HDL cholesterol, total cholesterol, systolic blood pressure and whether they smoked or had diabetes.
A 10-per cent higher cardiovascular risk was associated with poorer cognitive test scores in all areas except reasoning for men and fluency for women.
The findings contribute to the mounting evidence for the role of cardiovascular risk factors, such as high cholesterol and blood pressure, contributing to cognitive problems, starting in middle age. The study also demonstrated that how these heart disease risk factors can contribute to cognitive decline over a 10-year period.