By Dr. Smita Patel

There is a growing body of research that our vascular and metabolic health during mid-life matters when it comes to developing Alzheimer’s disease; a new study further adds to our understanding.

Researchers analyzed over 30 years of follow-up data from the Whitehall II study, a well-known British public health study from 1985.  More than 10,000 men and women employed by the British Civil Service in London were studied.

The researchers discovered that obesity at age 50 was associated with an almost 2-fold increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease, and that this increase was statistically significant.

Changing our behaviors isn’t easy, but the good news is that obesity is something that  in most cases is both preventable and modifiable. Adopting a Mediterranean diet and getting 40 minutes of aerobic exercise 4 days a week will reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s disease, and these lifestyle changes can help us achieve a healthy weight and improve the health of our brain.

If you are concerned about your risks and would like support in adopting behaviors to reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s disease, consider speaking to a physician who specializes in brain health.