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Alzheimer - Of "tau" and "plaques",

Is it a preventable condition?

Alzheimer’s disease, is the most common form of dementia (a term to describe changes in the brain in terms of memory and functions).


The Damage Done by Tangles (tau) and Plaques (amyloid-beta)

Most people develop two types of protein, tau and amyloid-beta, in the brain, as they age. But those with Alzheimer’s tend to develop in larger amounts and in pattern beginning at region of the brain crucial for learning, memory and emotions, with brain cell death and damage caused by the toxic buildup of the the tau and amyloid-beta protein fragments.











What contributes to development of Alzheimer?

Sometimes, if the Alzheimer’s appear before a person turns 65, it is considered an “early-onset” and most are genetics-based, likely inherited from the parent who has it.


In other cases, such as inflammation in the brain, vascular risk factors (damage in blood vessels supplying oxygen to the brain especially in those with diabetes, heart problems and hypertension), and poor lifestyle habits may also contribute to the development of Alzheimer’s symptoms development. 

New emerging evidence also shows that bacteria causing gum disease can also travel from the mouth to the brain, and this bacteria produces a protein that destroys nerve cells in the brain, leading to loss of memory and ultimately Alzheimer. Remember to keep your oral health in check too!


What are the common symptoms of Alzheimer?

Symptoms usually develop slowly worsens over time, severe enough to nterrupt daily tasks. As Alzheimer's advances through the brain it leads to increasingly severe symptoms, including disorientation, mood and behaviour changes, deepening confusion about events, time and place, more serious memory loss; speaking, swallowing and moving difficulty.

A study also shows that excessive daytime napping, when there is no significant night time sleep problems, may also indicate an early warning of Alzheimer! It is shown that accumulation of tau protein degenerates the area of brain promoting wakefulness, from the earliest stage of the disease.


What does research say about ways to prevent Alzheimer?


Try for a 30-minutes of moderate intensity exercise

(strenuous enough to still be able to talk, but can’t sing,

while exercising) for 3 to 4 days of a week. Split to 2

sessions of 15 minutes each if you are unable to keep

with 30 minutes straight of exercise, as long as you stay

to the moderate intensity activity levels. Aerobic exercise

can slow down the effects of the disease in the early stages, greater physical activity also slows the rate of brain tissue loss over time in normal people who had high levels of amyloid-beta plaque in the brain.


Mediterranean diet!

It focuses on fish intake twice a week, daily consumption of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and healthy Omega-3 fats with some low fat dairy products. Even a partial adherence to this diet is able to contribute to brain health. 

Get enough sleep!

Sufficient quality sleep is linked to greater amyloid clearance

from the brain. Aim to spend 85% of bedtime asleep. Make

changes to your routine if necessary, to improve a good

night’s sleep.


Socialise and learning new things!

At the moment, there are, but still limited studies on the

evidence of social connection and cognitive stimulating

activities to general overall improvement in preventing



Control your cardiovascular risk factor!

This includes hypertension, atrial fibrillation, high cholesterol,

heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Quit smoking too as a

long-term study found that those who had never smoked or who had quitted for 4 years or more had a lower risk of developing Alzheimer's and other types of dementia. When there is damage in the blood vessels that provide the brain with oxygen. As a result, low levels of oxygen reach the brain.

Prevent Alzheimer with the recommended steps, share this post with your loved ones today!

(updated : December, 2019)


Disclaimer : The website may contain information relating to various conditions and treatment, gathered and sourced from reputable sources. However, this is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment, it is solely intended for informational purposes only. Patients should always consult with a doctor or healthcare provider for thorough medical advice and information about diagnosis and treatment.



Reference :

  1. University of Texas. 2019. Scientists link hunger hormone to memory in Alzheimer’s studies

  2. Alzheimer’s Association. 2019. What is Alzheimer’s disease?

  3. University of Bergen. 2019. Brush your teeth- Postpone Alzheimer’s

  4. Harvard Health Publishing. 2017. What can you do to avoid Alzheimer’s disease?

  5. University of California-San Francisco. 2019. Alzheimer’s disease destroys neurons that keep us awake: Study suggests Tau tangles, not amyloid plaques, drive daytime napping that precedes dementia.

  6. Medical News Today: Tips for preventing Alzheimer’s disease. 2018.

  7. UT Southwestern Medical Centre. 2019. Exercise could slow withering effects of Alzheimer’s.

  8. Massachusetts General Hospital. 2019. Exercise offers protection against Alzheimer’s

  9. National Sleep Foundation. 2019. Good, fair, or poor: How well do you sleep?

  10. Veterans Affairs Research Communications. 2019. High LDL linked to early-onset Alzheimer’s.

  11. Choi, Effect of smoking cessation on the risk of dementia: a longitudinal study

  12. European Society of Cardiology. 2019. Smoking, high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity each linked to unhealthy brains.

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