Al Power, my friend and co-blogger has a new book out. Dementia Beyond Drugs is a groundbreaking work that will rattle the foundations of conventional wisdom on dementia.
In the spirit of Dementia Beyond Drugs, Al offers us a look at the relationship between diet, exercise and community in Indian– the community of Ballabgarh has a substantially lower risk of dementia compared with America.
I’ll let Al take it from here.
Does the village of Ballabgarh, India hold the key to preventing dementia?
Researchers have found a much lower than expected rate of dementia among residents of this northern Indian village. While one might expect that people don’t live as long in rural India on average as we do, the discrepancy holds even when taking this factor into account.
Over 5000 people were tested there by doctors from the University of Pittsburgh to look for clues to this phenomenon. They carry the same proportion of the APO4E gene as do Americans in Pennsylvania.
But guess what? They are all very physically active, eat low-fat and/or vegetarian diets, and obesity is unheard of in Ballabgarh. So once again, we have learned something we already know: Eat well and exercise. There is also a very strong social structure, another factor shown to improve health and well-being.
With many, if not most, cases of dementia likely to have a subtle vascular component, this revelation should come as no surprise. Healthy living is, as always, the best key to healthy aging.