It is well-documented that lead exposure contributes to cardiovascular disease. However, studies also show that adults with higher-than-average levels of lead in their blood tend to experience mild levels of cognitive impairment and are at a much higher risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s. Heavy metal exposure in general creates oxidative stress on the body. You can help mitigate this stress by eating foods high in antioxidants, such as fruits and veggies that are green, red, and blue in color.
2. Common anticholinergic medications
Recently published research links a number of prescription and OTC medications to an increased risk of both Alzheimer’s and dementia. In particular, a family of drugs known as anticholinergics that include tricyclic antidepressants, antihistamines, and antimuscarinics. The effects are dose dependent: the more you take, the more at risk you become.
Also known as DDE, this type of insecticide was banned in the United States in 1972. It is still used heavily in other parts of the world, including many that the US imports food products from. Higher blood levels of DDE are linked to a significantly high risk of Alzheimer’s.
Make sure to thoroughly wash all fruits and vegetables before eating them (preferably with an essential oil-based cleanser), and avoid buying fish from countries where DDE is still used
The mind-body connection is extremely influential. Research found that adults with symptoms of depression are 1.5 times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s and depression. The risk may be increased by treating depression with tricyclic antidepressant medications.
5.Negative thoughts on aging
Similar to depression, one’s view on aging can affect how your mind literally ages. Having a negative view about aging can lead to degenerative changes to your brain, resulting in an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Think positive!
6.Lack of exercise
Beyond the benefits to your body, a 2015 study found those who exercised regularly reduced their risk of degenerative brain disease by more than 50%. As you age, daily light aerobic activity such as a long walk should do the trick! You’ll also feel better and have more energy than your non-active counterparts.
It should come as no surprise that physical trauma to the skull and brain can lead to degenerative changes later in life. Repeated concussions, particularly those involving a loss of consciousness when the injury occurs, are linked to a significantly higher risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Always wear your seatbelt when driving and a helmet when participating in sports to protect your noggin!