Research has shown that Alzheimer's disease (AD) prevalence increases as people making the population grow old (Jedrziewski et al., 2005). In 2015, about 47 million people worldwide were affected by the disease and the figure is projected to triple by the year 2050 (Mangialasche et al., 2012). The increase in the number of people suffering from Alzheimer's disease will cause a great impact in the health care services as well as the economy of the world. Most of the resources will be channeled to the health sector to treat the disease. In order to avoid this scenario, care must be taken at the moment to reduce cases of AD prevalence. Research shows that slowing the onset of AD will decrease significantly the number of people who are developing the disease in future. For example, a delay with 2 years will save about 2 million individuals in by the year 2050 (Jedrziewski et al., 2005). It is therefore, necessary to delay the onset of the disease by employing the available means. Apart from using the Food and Drug Administration (Citron, 2010), several other ways can be used to reduce the possibility of developing the Alzheimer's disease. Some of the ways include; increasing literacy levels of citizens, engaging in physical activities, proper diets among others that will be discussed in this article.
One major way to ensure there is a low risk of developing AD is ensuring the citizens of a nation receive formal education (Jedrziewski et al., 2005). Individuals with low levels of education are at a higher risk of contracting the disease than those with higher levels of educations. In a study done by Jedrziewski et al. (2005), it was observed that AD is more prevalent among individuals with few years of formal education, less than 8 years had the highest number of individuals with AD. The individuals were 2.6 times at risk of developing AD compared to those with eight and above years of education. In order to control AD, it is therefore, necessary to provide formal education to people. Education levels help individuals identify better ways of living which will keep them away from diseases (Jedrziewski et al., 2005). Those with low levels of education tend to live a life of compromises. They usually comprise on their health in order to achieve what they need. Most of them live a poor life therefore, concentrates on having food on the table do not consider their health. For the whole world to fight AD, every nation has to come out and mobilize her citizens on the importance of formal education. In this way, citizens will get the opportunity to read more about the disease and also the preventive measures available to curb it.
Involving one's self in different physical activities also limit the chances of having Alzheimer's disease (Henderson, 2014). Those who do not engage in activities like walking or running will be at a high risk of having AD. Studies show that frequent and intense physical activities lower the possibility of having AD. It is therefore, necessary for an individual to engage in physical exercise in order to avoid developing AD. Those who frequently visit the gym for exercise are less susceptible to developing AD (Citron, 2010). It is therefore, necessary and healthy for people to engage in physical activities. The activities will not only make one fit but also help the person avoid certain diseases including Alzheimer's disease. The more frequent and intense the activity is, the better (Middleton & Yaffe, 2009). Those already suffering from the disease apart from taking the prescribed drugs can also undertake serious physical activities in order to control the disease and facilitate quicker recovery. In order to keep the disease under complete control, physical exercises should be encouraged from a young age so that children develop immunity towards the disease and prevent later attacks (Roberts & Tersegno, 2010).
Observing proper diet at anytime is another way of reducing AD prevalence (Citron, 2010). Diet is majorly determined by the economic status of a family and some important meals may be out of reach for a poor family. However, a family should strive to get access to that important food in order to avoid facing a more serious economic situation while treating the disease. Even if it will be expensive, it will be worthy to control the disease than wait and treat it later after an attack. Rich people are also faced with the consumption of certain foods which may hasten the development of the disease. Diet should therefore be considered by all classes of individuals in order to control AD (Henderson, 2014). People should consume a small amount of red meat with a lot emphasis on fruits and vegetables, fish, olive oil, whole grains and nuts. This will help in preventing the prevalence of the disease. On the other hand, foods rich in cholesterol should be avoided as studies have found that high levels of cholesterol accelerate the risk of developing AD (Sindi et al., 2015). Proper diet will keep a person healthy and safe from Alzheimer's disease attack.
According to Jedrziewski et al. (2015), people with head injury are 2.16 times likely to have AD than the ones without head injury. It is therefore necessary to avoid head trauma as a strategy to limit chances of having AD. Head injury predisposes an individual to contracting AD. Head injury place those involved in the use of force in the cause of their work to be more exposed to AD (Anstey et al., 2013). Since working enables families to receive their daily needs, some people risk developing AD while trying to acquire these needs. Footballers, boxers and combat veterans are always at risk of contracting AD while performing their duties. They experience a lot of force on their head which can result in head injuries hence predisposing him/her to AD (Jedrziewski et al., 2005). It is necessary to avoid any head injury to prevent one from contracting AD. When a lot of force is subjected on one's head, the force will disrupt the functions of the brain thereby making the person be at a high risk of developing AD. The brain should be taken good care of and any cause of disruption on its functions should be avoided to ensure a healthy individual with low risk of having AD. Protective equipments such as helmets should be used to protect the head from injuries (Henderson, 2014).
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is another way of preventing AD development. Studies have shown that those who are diabetes are often susceptible to AD. Mid life obesity also predisposes an individual to increased AD development (Anstey et al., 2013). Other studies depict diabetes to increase the risk of developing AD through vascular pathways as well as through the interaction biological mechanisms which are related to diabetes (Middleton & Yaffe, 2009). Mid life obesity is another health factor which increases the risk of developing AD. For proper control of these health factors, proper treatment should be administered to cure the disease first. This will as a result automatically protect the person from developing AD. While mid life obesity increase chance of having AD, obesity at later stage of life will reduce the possibility of having AD (Sindi et al., 2015). In order to reduce the risk, one has to maintain a good weight at the mid stage of life. Being overweight is a serious problem and is not involved in developing AD alone. There are other problems associated with the condition. Maintaining a proper diet is one of the best ways of controlling obesity and should be considered to avoid developing AD.
Inclusion of vitamin C and E in the diet can also act as a good way of reducing AD prevalence. Several studies have confirmed the role of vitamin C and E in reducing the chances of developing AD (Middleton & Yaffe, 2009). The vitamins acts as antioxidants hence they relieve the body of the oxidative stress which will limit the chances of developing AD. It is therefore, necessary to include enough amounts of both vitamin C and E rich foods in the diet. However, some studies have also confirmed that large amounts of vitamin E supplements may elevate the mortality rate making it necessary to regulate the amount of the supplements and avoid excess consumptions. Some of the vitamin C rich foods that one can include in the diet are lemons, broccoli, kale, mustard spinach, guavas, and sweet yellow peppers among others. For vitamin E rich foods, one can consume sunflower seeds, almonds, sunflower oil, peanuts, avocado, mango, crayfish among others (Middleton & Yaffe, 2009). These foods will provide the body with enough vitamin C and E to help reduce the possibility of developing AD.
Another proven way of eradicating chances of having AD is using cognitive and leisure activities. These activities offer a strategy to reduce the development of AD. 33 per cent low risk of having AD will be realized when there is an increase with 1 point in the cognitive activities (Stern & Munn, 2010). Some of these activities may include reading a novel, board games and playing a musical instrument. Involving one's self in such activities will help the person lower risk of having AD. It is therefore, important for a person to have some leisure time as it will help the person avoid incurring medical bills due diseases like Alzheimer's disease (Stern & Munn, 2010). Spending the leisure time constructively will also benefit the health of a person. Engaging in cognitive activities will boost a person's skills as well as keep the person healthy making it very important. Some of these activities may also bring people together leading to social interactions which also help in reducing development of AD (Hartin, 2014).
In conclusion, AD prevalence can be lowered by implementing the above discussed strategies. The strategies are economically relevance and can help reduce the cost of treatment. If serious considerations are taken to reduce the chances of having the disease, it will help save a lot of money which will be directed to treatments in the future. Apart from reducing the risks of the disease, the methods also add some other advantages to the body for example, physical activities increases body fitness making a person be strong and healthy. When serious precautions are not taken at the moment to reduce the prevalence of AD, many people will be suffering from the disease in the future causing a lot of economic problems all over the world.
Anstey, K. J., Cherbuin, N., & Herath, P. M. (2013). Development of a new method for assessing global risk of Alzheimer's disease for use in population health approaches to prevention. Prevention Science, 14(4), 411-421.
Citron, M. (2010). Alzheimer's disease: strategies for disease modification. Nature reviews Drug discovery, 9(5), 387.
Hartin, P. J., Nugent, C. D., McClean, S. I., Cleland, I., Tschanz, J., Clark, C., & Norton, M. C. (2014, December). Encouraging behavioral change via everyday technologies to reduce risk of developing Alzheimer's disease. In International Workshop on Ambient Assisted Living (51-58).
Henderson, V. W. (2014). Three midlife strategies to prevent cognitive impairment due to Alzheimer's disease. Climacteric, 17(2), 38-46.
Jedrziewski, M. K., Lee, V. M. Y., & Trojanowski, J. Q. (2005). Lowering the risk of Alzheimer's disease: evidence-based practices emerge from new research. Alzheimer's & Dementia, 1(2), 152-160.
Mangialasche, F., Kivipelto, M., Solomon, A., & Fratiglioni, L. (2012). Dementia prevention: current epidemiological evidence and future perspective. Alzheimer's research & therapy, 4(1), 6.
Middleton, L. E., & Yaffe, K. (2009). Promising strategies for the prevention of dementia. Archives of neurology, 66(10), 1210-1215.
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