I firmly believe that it’s better to know you have a disease—or a higher risk of one—as early as possible.
This knowledge provides you with more time to adjust to a smarter lifestyle that will benefit you in the long run. Or at the very least, to organize a caregiving plan, whenever necessary.
Well, researchers recently developed a tool that could help predict DEMENTIA risk over the next 13 years.
So, listen up—because you’ll definitely want to talk to your doctor about this…
Using U.K. Biobank data, researchers developed a point-based risk model for dementia for nearly 445,000 men and women without cognitive impairment at baseline.
Importantly, the model does not require any imaging. And preliminary results point to great accuracy.
The total point score ranged from -18 to 30 for men, and -17 to 30 for women—and can be used to predict dementia risk over five, nine, and 13 years.
Higher dementia risk factors included increasing age, socioeconomic adversity, sleep, and health history (things like diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and more contributed to a higher risk).
Here’s an example point-based assessment: An underweight (3 points), 70-year-old man (10 points), with a low education level (1 point), and a history of diabetes (1 point) and cerebrovascular disease (5 points) would have a total risk score of 20.
His corresponding dementia risk would be nine percent at five years, 31 percent at nine years, and 54 percent and 13 years.
Ultimately, researchers found their model had a 97.59 percent predictive accuracy for dementia risk over nine years in men and 99.59 percent in women—and a near 100 percent predictive accuracy over 13 years in both.
But let’s not mince words: This tool can help predict the likelihood of dementia…
It does not mean individuals will (or will not) develop the disease.
The data you NEED to take back control
As you can see, there’s some behind-the-scenes footage where the experts assign and tally points. Then, a probability percentage is calculated.
Now, this tool is far from perfect. But, I like that it’s data-based. And I think any type of metric scale is a fun way to analyze health in real time.
But the most exciting part of these findings, to me, is that they underscore one critical message…
When it comes to dementia, we can—and SHOULD—address controllable risk factors.
I’ve written about a number of strategies that make a difference in the fight against dementia—from diet and exercise to board games and fish oil supplements. The list keeps growing in terms of what you can do.
But I also encourage you to start a conversation with your doctor this year, if you haven’t yet already.
To learn more all-natural strategies for keeping dementia at bay, I encourage you to check out my Alzheimer’s Prevention and Treatment Plan.
Until next time,
“New Risk Score Predicts Dementia Probability.” Medscape, 11/22/2022. (medscape.com/viewarticle/984486)