First rule of dementia prevention: Take care of your heart

Photo: Thinkstock

Published: September, 2013

What you need to know about the link between cognitive decline, Alzheimer's, and clogged arteries.

When memory and thinking skills begin to fade, Alzheimer's disease is often fingered as the culprit. But it's often something else: atherosclerosis (the buildup of fatty plaque in the arteries) and arteriosclerosis (the stiffening of arteries with age). Both can kill brain cells by preventing them from getting the oxygen-rich blood they need.

To continue reading this article, you must log in.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise

New subscriptions to Harvard Health Online are temporarily unavailable. Click the button below to learn about our other subscription offers.

Learn More »