Shocking Cause Of Alzheimer’s Discovered
Rates of Alzheimer’s and other dementias are on the rise. Are you safe? In today’s article I reveal to you how where you live may be the single most significant factor.
Read on and I’ll tell you what you need to protect yourself.
The Causes Of Dementias No Longer Elusive
For decades various theories about the causes of Alzheimer’s and other dementias have circulated. You’ve probably heard them. One popular myth is that they are caused by aluminum. Another popular myth is that they are caused by high fat diets.
Although those rumors continue to make rounds, they have been discredited long ago. There is no good evidence that normal exposures to aluminum or that dietary fat in and of itself can cause dementia.
But in recent years, a new branch of research has revealed something startling. Increasingly, it is becoming clear that air quality is the strongest determinant of dementia risk.
Researchers have looked at huge amounts of information. And what they find every time is that it is extremely easy to predict who will develop dementia. Those who are exposed to the poorest air quality are at the highest risk.
Here’s an example. One study followed a group of people in a semi-rural area for 10 years. Those who lived furthest from major roads didn’t develop dementia. Those who lived next to the major roads did.
This same thing has been found in urban, suburban, and rural environments. It’s been found in the US., Europe, South America, and Asia.
Where you live and the environments in which you spend your time either protect you or put you at risk.
Particulate Matter In Brain Causes Harm
Air pollution is composed of tiny particles in the air. There are a number of factors that determine the effects of pollution. For one thing, the size of the particles matters. The larger particles are naturally filtered by the nose, throat, and lungs. But the very small particles are the problem. Very small particles make their way past the natural defenses and have now been shown to travel all the way into the brain.
Additionally, of course, the quantity of pollution matters. The more particles there are, the more harmful the pollution.
And lastly, the type of particles matter. Naturally-occurring particles are thought to have less harmful effects than many of the particles produced by modern industry and technology. For example, engine exhaust contains many very small particles of dangerous heavy metals as well as free radicals and other harmful substances.
The Worst Offenders Are Automobiles
For most people, the primary causes of harmful air pollution are automobiles. Diesel engines are the very worst of the bunch. In fact, it’s been estimated that pound for pound, long-haul trucks produce many times the harmful pollution than passenger cars.
But the evidence is clear that living near major roadways puts people at high risk. And cities put people at much higher risk largely because of the concentration of automobile exhaust.
While automobile exhaust is the major cause of air pollution for most people in the U.S., there are other major sources as well. Many industrial production facilities are sources of air pollution. And those living close by are at higher risk. Those who work in such environments are at even higher risk.
Protecting Yourself With Smart Choices
What can you do to protect yourself?
Obviously, one of the most powerful things you could do would be to ensure that you live at a healthy distance from major causes of air pollution. Therefore, if you are planning to move, one of your criteria for your new home should be that it is away from a major roadway, industrial facility, or other major source of air pollution. And if you are considering moving to a new region, keep in mind that the western half of the United States has many times less air pollution than the eastern half on the whole. Major cities are exceptions to that generalization.
What if you live nearby major sources of air pollution and cannot move? Then some smart choices can help to offer additional protection.
Remember that you spend (or should, at least) approximately a third of your life in your bedroom. One of the very best ways you can protect your health is by making your bedroom as healthy as possible. There are some simple and sensible steps you can take to improve the air quality of your bedroom.
Many houseplants have been proven to improve the quality of the air. Even NASA uses plants to improve air quality in space facilities. Growing potted plants in your bedroom (and elsewhere in your house) is a smart move.
Some of the plants that have been shown to have the very best air purification properties include: mums, spider plants, dracaena, ficus, and boston fern. All of these are commonly available from stores supplying houseplants. And they are easy to care for as well.
And finally, although air pollution is one of the major factors in dementia, it isn’t the only factor. So no matter what you do, take care of the basics with adequate sleep, daily sunlight, and lots of antioxidant-rich natural foods.
Do these things, and you can keep your brain sharp for life.