Uncontrolled hypertension could raise Alzheimer's risk
Keeping your heart healthy may not be one of the first things you consider when looking to prevent Alzheimer's disease, but the two, in fact, may be related. A new study from the University of Texas Dallas Center for Vital Longevity discovered that hypertension and the presence of a common gene could increase the risk of developing Alzheimer's later in life.
The study observed 147 participants, who were then split up depending on whether they had hypertension and were taking anti-hypertension medication or not. The subjects were then divided again based on whether or not they had the APOE-e4 gene, which is present in roughly 20 percent of people. This genetic variation is linked to dementia.
The results showed that hypertensive adults who were not taking medication and had the genetic variation had the most amyloid plaque in their brains, which can lead to Alzheimer's. Patients with hypertension but who took medication for it – even those who had the genetic risk - had no higher levels of plaque than those who had neither hypertension nor the APOE-e4 gene.