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11/10/2013

extreme stress

Stress can increase your dementia risk by 21 percent
We’re all stressed. But consider this: According to Swedish research just published in BMJ Open, women experiencing extreme stress in midlife are 21 percent more likely to be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and 15 percent more likely to develop dementia decades later.香港牛栏奶粉2013最新事件
Don’t think your morning commute is going to give you dementia, though. These women were coping with tough life events like divorce, job loss, serious illness and abuse. Although the researchers took into account factors like education, marriage and income, the link between these major stressors and health outcomes 40 years later was still clear.

More: What you eat can influence your brain chemistry, so fill your plate with these 13 foods that fight stress and depression.

While it’s unsettling to think that unavoidable life events can cause emotional trauma and put you at risk for serious brain function loss, it’s not a package deal. “Distress seems to be one of several risk factors,” says study author Lena Johansson, PhD, of the Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology at Gothenberg University. “Not everyone who had distress developed Alzheimer’s disease.”

Researchers suspect the link is a result of stress’s effects on body processes known to cause cognitive damage, like degraded hippocampal function, boosted levels of inflammation-causing​ cytokines, and increased deposits of beta-amyloid and tau proteins, which make up the tangled plaques characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease.
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More: Stress wreaks all kinds of havoc on both your mind and body. Find out how to beat your stress hormone.

While you can’t control what goes on around you, you can make it a priority to care for yourself amid the chaos of the event. “It’s how you process the trauma that matters,” says Robert London, MD, a psychiatrist based in New York City.

In the meantime, Dr. London suggests creating positive outlets in your life. “The support of friends and family can have a tremendous positive effect on us.”

More: Everybody has different ways of dealing with stress. What’s your coping style?

More from Prevention:
Silent signals you're stressed
Tricks to boost your brain all day long
6 weird things that make you happy
Click here for surprising ways to improve your life instantly.香港牛栏奶粉最新事件2013之召回