Biological age linked to stroke and dementia risk

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A groundbreaking study from Karolinska Institutet in Sweden reveals a significant correlation between higher biological age and increased risk of stroke and dementia, particularly vascular dementia.

The study, led by Sara Hägg, an associate professor and doctoral student Jonathan Mak, holds its ground even when considering other factors such as genetics and lifestyle.

Measuring Biological Age

Biological vs. Chronological Age: Traditional reliance on chronological age, merely a count of years lived, is imprecise as people age differently. To measure biological age, researchers used 18 biomarkers including blood lipids, blood sugar, and blood pressure.

The Study: Conducted using data from the UK Biobank, the study involved a cohort of 325,000 individuals aged 40 to 70. The researchers focused on the relationship between these biomarkers and the risk of neurodegenerative diseases.

Increased Risks Uncovered

Higher Risk of Dementia and Stroke: The study found that individuals with a biological age five years greater than their chronological age had a 40% increased risk of vascular dementia or ischemic stroke.

Impact on Different Diseases: While the risk of ALS also rose with higher biological age, interestingly, no increased risk was noted for Parkinson’s disease, which aligns with its unique characteristics in other research areas.

Potential for Disease Prevention

Lifestyle and Medication Influence: Many of the biomarkers contributing to biological age can be influenced through lifestyle choices and medications, suggesting potential strategies to slow down ageing processes and delay disease onset.

Further Research: The team plans to explore the connection between biological age and other illnesses, such as cancer, continuing their contributions to understanding age-related diseases.

In summary, this study highlights the importance of considering biological age as a more precise predictor of disease risk than chronological age.

It opens doors to potential preventative measures and targeted treatments for age-related conditions like dementia and stroke.

If you care about stroke, please read studies that diets high in flavonoids could help reduce stroke risk, and MIND diet could slow down cognitive decline after stroke.

For more information about health, please see recent studies about antioxidants that could help reduce the risk of dementia, and tea and coffee may help lower your risk of stroke, dementia.

The research findings can be found in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry.

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