Does women's heart health affect cognition in midlife? Does women's heart health affect cognition in midlife?

Does women's heart health affect cognition in midlife?

Does women's heart health affect cognition in midlife?

A new study finds that Black women with poor cardiovascular health may face an increased risk for early signs of cognitive decline in midlife.

The study, published by the American Heart Association magazine, included about 363 black women and 402 white women who enrolled at the Chicago site in a study entitled Women's Health Across the Nation, when they were between 42 and 52 years old.

Cognition (measured by processing speed and working memory) was assessed annually or every two years for a maximum of 20 years, with an average follow-up of 9.8 years.

The team also calculated cardiovascular health indicators based on a checklist known as the Life Essential 8, which includes 8 basic factors that must be considered to ensure good heart health, which are: blood pressure, body mass index, glucose, cholesterol, smoking, and physical activity. Diet and sleep.

The question of interest was to determine whether cardiovascular health was associated with equally reduced cognitive decline for both black and white middle-aged women.

Processing speed, a key indicator of early cognitive decline, appears to decline in black women with poor cardiovascular health starting in middle age, but not in white women. Working memory did not decline in the overall study group, or in groups based on race or cardiovascular health.

“The findings suggest that promoting cardiovascular health, especially blood pressure management and smoking cessation, in midlife for black women may be important for early prevention of cognitive decline and maintaining independence,” said study co-author Dr. Imke Janssen, of Rush University Medical Center. During aging, clinical trials should determine whether improving heart health in midlife slows cognitive decline.”

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