Even a slightly higher blood pressure in people aged between 45 to 55 raises dementia risk.
The findings of a research published in the European Heart Journal revealed that even if the systolic blood press is as low as 130, it increased dementia risk.
The scientists measured blood pressure of nearly 9000 men and women in 1985 when they were age 35 to 55, and then again in 1991, 1997 and 2003. The research found that a systolic blood pressure at age 50 of 130 or greater was associated with a 38 percent increased risk of dementia.
Of 8,639 people involved in the study, 385 developed dementia by 2017, at an average age of 75.
Interestingly, this is not the first study to link dementia and high blood pressure.
A 2017 study found that women who develop high blood pressure in their 40s could be more vulnerable to dementia later in life. The risk could run as high as 73 percent, but the same did not hold true for men.
These findings indicate that high blood pressure could start affecting the brain even earlier than previously thought.
“The brain is a very metabolically active organ in the body. It requires an outsized amount of oxygen and other nutrients,” Keith Fargo, director of scientific programs and outreach for the Alzheimer’s Association, was quoted as saying by WebMD. “Because of that, there’s a very, very rich blood delivery system in the brain. Anything that happens to compromise that is going to compromise the overall health and function of the brain.”