A healthy lifestyle may offset genetic risk for Alzheimer’s

LOS ANGELES (AP) — New research suggests that a healthy lifestyle can cut the risk of developing Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia even if you have genes that raise your risk for these diseases.

Researchers in England used the UK Biobank to study nearly 200,000 people 60 or older. People with high genetic risk and poor health habits were about three times more likely to develop dementia versus those with low genetic risk and good habits. Regardless of how much genetic risk someone had, a good diet, exercise, limited alcohol and not smoking made dementia less likely.

The study was discussed Sunday at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Los Angeles and published online by the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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