High blood pressure can reduce the risk of memory problems.

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A new study by Dr. Jeff Williamson of Wake Forest Medical School has shown that lowering blood pressure can reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia.

The study examined the effect of more intensive control of blood pressure and the risks of developing moderate cognitive impairment. That's when people have problems with thinking and planning, but they can perform everyday tasks.

About 75 percent of people over 65 have high blood pressure. The study involved more than 9,000 people aged 50 and over for three years. It was found that a decrease in systolic blood pressure below 120 resulted in a decrease in mild cognitive insufficiency by 19% (i.e., there was an improvement in memory and mental performance).

It is worth noting that the researchers did not see the same effect in dementia: “Due to the early termination of the study and fewer than expected cases of dementia.” Because of this, the Alzheimer's Association is going to help fund the study for another two years.

Study: Effect of Intensive vs Standard Blood Pressure Control on Probable Dementia.

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