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Science On Tap: How you can reduce your risk of dementia


One in three seniors die with Alzheimer’s Disease or some type of dementia, according to theAlzheimer’s Association.

It’s a fate many of us hope to avoid, and we could be in luck.

Dementia researcher Nathaniel Chin is this month’s Science on Tap speaker in Minocqua.

He says Alzheimer’s Disease isn’t entirely preventable, but there are steps people can take to reduce their risk of developing it.

He’ll be talking about those steps during his Science on Tap discussion, but as a spoiler, they include getting enough sleep, exercising and eating right.

The most evidence is for exercise,” Chin says. “But I’m starting to try to put all the pieces together, and I really think people should start focusing on their sleep first. If you’re tired, you’re not going to exercise. You’re not going to eat well. You’re not going to socialize with people. You’re not going to challenge your brain. You really have to put your body and mind in the best position, and I think that starts with sleep.”

Chin says it could take a while before scientists discover a cure for Alzheimer’s Disease.

But the research is advancing rapidly.

Doctors can discover changes in the brain earlier, and that means prevention and stabilization efforts seem more feasible.

On top of that, research released in the past few months shows a new drug to be effective in slowing the brain’s decline.

“That’s a game changer,” Chin says. “We think that maybe that drug will be approved by both the FDA and the government, and then there will actually be a therapeutic drug that targets Alzheimer’s disease, which has never happened before in the history of Alzheimer’s treatment.”

You can learn about all of this and more with Dr. Chin at Science on Tap. His talk starts at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Oakfire Pizza in Minocqua.

Dr. Chin also has a podcast called Dementia Matters. You can find it wherever you get your podcasts.

Erin Gottsacker worked at WXPR as a Morning Edition host and reporter from December 2020 to January 2023. During her time at the station, Erin reported on the issues that matter most in the Northwoods.
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