What is dementia?
Dementia currently has no cure, but research suggests there are many factors that could influence your risk.
Fortunately, new research by Mount Sinai Medical Centre in New York, suggests that a popular medication could cut your risk of Alzheimer’s disease by a whopping 60 percent.
Designed to target erectile dysfunction, the pill in question is Viagra, which contains an active ingredient called sildenafil.
The little blue pill that increases blood flow could have implications outside of the bedroom.
Looking at more than 27,000 participants over the age of 65, the research team found that Viagra cut the risk for men by 60 percent and for women by 47 percent.
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The researchers compared the results of those who had been given the blue pill and those who had not taken the drug.
The study findings showed that Viagra suppressed a protein called PDE5.
Interestingly, Alzheimer’s patients have been found to have “significantly increased” levels of PDE5 in the part of the brain that manages memory, according to Dr Alexis Missick, a GP working with UK Meds.
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The doctor said: “Viagra belongs to a class of medications called PDE-5 inhibitors.
“PDE-5 is an enzyme that breaks down the substance that causes your smooth muscles to relax (essentially, the substance that causes an erection).
“By blocking the action of PDE-5, medicines like Viagra and Cialis are able to help men to get and maintain an erection by relaxing the blood vessels that carry blood to the penis.”
However, the drug also seems to offer these benefits for your brain.
Furthermore, the little blue pill increases blood supply, which is considered helpful for brain health.
The study findings come as dementia cases are estimated to rise to 139 million by 2050.
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