Dementia should be integrated into both global and national public health programmes alongside other major non communicable diseases according to a report released by Alzheimer’s Disease International. The annual World Alzheimer Report reveals that control of diabetes and high blood pressure as well as measures to encourage smoking cessation and to reduce cardiovascular risk, have the potential to reduce the risk of dementia even in late-life.
Alzheimer’s Disease International commissioned a team of researchers, led by Professor Martin Prince from King’s College London, to produce the report which is published ahead of World Alzheimer’s Day™ on 21 September.
Alzheimer’s Society comment:
George McNamara, Head of Policy at Alzheimer’s Society said:
‘We can no longer ignore the growing mountain of evidence that in many cases lifestyle factors play a key role in the development of dementia. We have long known that what is good for your heart is good for your head, but it is becoming increasingly clear that as well as searching for a cure we need to address lifestyle factors to ultimately help prevent dementia where possible.
‘By the next general election 850,000 people in the UK will have dementia and the staggering human cost of the condition is met by an economic burden of £26billion. Anything we can do to make people aware of the role lifestyle factors can play in increasing risk not only makes sense to those people affected by it but could have real value to the economy.’