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Three in four believe advice now would reduce the risk of dementia in later life

August 15, 2017

Three in four people believe that advice on dementia risk reduction would encourage them to adopt a healthier lifestyle, a charity has found.

Alzheimer’s Society, which published the research, said 75 per cent of people in midlife (aged 40 – 64) would make lifestyle changes now to reduce their risk of developing the disease in the future.

Dementia is currently the biggest killer in the UK. Around 850,000 people in the UK have dementia, with numbers set to rise to over one million by 2025.

The charity says the findings reflect the increasing public appetite to understand modifiable dementia risks.

The research has led to the formation of a pilot programme for 40-64-year-olds on how to better manage their cognitive health.

The advice will highlight the benefits of stopping smoking, being physically active, eating healthily, maintaining a healthy weight, drinking less alcohol, and keeping mentally active.

Dr David Reynolds, Chief Scientific Officer at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “Dementia is not an inevitable part of ageing and we now know that there are steps we can all take to reduce our risk. As evidence about dementia risk factors grows, we must arm the public with this knowledge and the NHS Health Check is a perfect platform to do this.

“The results of our pilot study show that there is a strong public desire for dementia risk reduction information and that people are willing to act on it too – which is why we hope to see this approach rolled out nationally. If we can reach people in midlife now, when there’s a real window of opportunity to impact dementia risk; imagine the difference we could make to the number of people living with dementia in future.”

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