Unfortunately researchers have found that high cholesterol levels even as early as aged forty increase the risk of Alzheimer's disease by as much as one and a half times. Although the link between high cholesterol and Alzheimer's has been known for years what was unclear was the age at which lifestyle starts to affect dementia risk – and now it is clear the results are quite scary!

Researchers followed the health of almost 10,000 men and women aged between 40 and 45 in California from the late 1960's to 2007. By 2007, around 500 had Alzheimer’s and 162 had vascular dementia – and those with cholesterol levels between 249 and 500 milligrams in their 40s were one and a half times more likely to have Alzheimer’s 40 years later than those with less than 198mg. People with levels of 221 to 248mg were more than one and a quarter times more likely to develop the disease.

The results of this latest study are important in that they show the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease due to high cholesterol is present regardless of whether patients suffered from other Alzheimer’s-linked conditions such as diabetes, obesity or high blood pressure.

Maintaining a correct cholesterol level is important for two reasons. Firstly, it is believed that high cholesterol triggers the over-production of a protein that ultimately results in the formation of plaques, accumulating until it build ups up and starts killing brain cells.

Secondly, high cholesterol also increases the production of a different protein that transports cholesterol out of tissues resulting in an increase in the amount of free cholesterol which is toxic to nerve cells.

Therefore because of these risks we need to look at how to control and lower your cholesterol levels naturally – if they are high.

My first port of call would be vitamin E as this is known to have many beneficial effects on the body. With regards to cholesterol, vitamin E not only prevents but also removes atherosclerotic plaques (the fatty build up in artery walls) but generally reduces “bad cholesterol”.

Other studies have shown that vitamin E when combined with vitamin C offers an even greater protection against Alzheimer's, with one study stating that “the use of these antioxidant vitamins may offer an attractive strategy for the prevention of Alzheimer's disease”. I would recommend a daily supplement of between 200-400i.u. of Vitamin E to safe-guard the integrity of your cardiovascular system

Another promising supplement is Arjuna. This is a herb that helps maintain a healthy heart by promoting effective cardiac functioning, regulates blood pressure, lowers cholesterol (by suppressing the blood's absorption of lipids) and reduces the effects of stress and nervousness. Studies have shown that it can effectively lower cholesterol by as much as 12 percent in just 30 days and therefore I would recommend a daily supplement of up to 250mg. of Arjuna.

Now I have shown you a few ways to protect your brain from cholesterol, I suggest you read my other articles and purchase my book The Alzheimer's Alternative which will show you other ways to greatly lessen your chances of developing Alzheimer's and slow it's progression

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Steffan H. Abel D.C. has been involved in Chiropractic and healthcare research for over 20 years. He has run his own successful practice in the north of England for the last 19 years. During which time he has treated over 10,000 patients and given over 100,000 treatments. He has lectured and taught extensively in both Europe and America to students, chiropractors and medical doctors.

He has studied Hypnotherapy, N.L.P. and qualified as a Life Coach. He has also studied various Chiropractic-based treatments (gaining a M.Sc. in post graduate Clinical Chiropractic in 2003) as well as energy therapies such as Seichem and Reiki. In 2001 he became a Fellow of the College of Chiropractors and a Fellow of the Association of Osteomyology and in 2007 became a Fellow of the European Academy of Chiropractic.

In his spare time he spends between 15 and 25 hours per week researching all areas of “alternative” and allopathic healthcare in order to bring the best advice to his patients through his practice and writing and has just finished his latest book The Alzheimer's Alternative (www.alzheimersalternative.com). When not working he is to be found enjoying life with Sue, his partner, – whom he loves tremendously!

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