New research published in JAMA Network Open suggests that older adults who take medications to lower their blood pressure may be at a reduced risk of developing dementia. The study pooled data from 17 observational studies that included over 34,000 participants aged 60 to 110. The average age of the participants was 72, and they were followed for an average of four years.
The findings showed that people with untreated high blood pressure had a 42% greater risk of developing dementia compared to healthy older adults. Additionally, those with untreated high blood pressure had a 26% greater risk than people with treated high blood pressure. However, when researchers compared individuals with treated high blood pressure to healthy older adults without high blood pressure, they found no significant difference in dementia risk between the two groups.
This research highlights the connection between heart and brain health and suggests that treating high blood pressure in later life may benefit both organs. As always, it’s important to consult with a healthcare provider before making any changes to your medication regimen or lifestyle habits.