Adults with an average age of 77 with or without Alzheimer’s disease and dementia symptoms have better cognition skills in the late summer and early fall than in the winter and spring, New research by Andrew Lim of the University of Toronto, Canada, has found.
In an intriguing discovery which hints at new ways to fight the devastating condition, the researchers analyzed data on 3,353 people. They found that their mental function declined by the equivalent of 4.8 years in the spring and winter months.
Will you offer us a hand? Every gift, regardless of size, fuels our future.
Your critical contribution enables us to maintain our independence from shareholders or wealthy owners, allowing us to keep up reporting without bias. It means we can continue to make Jewish Business News available to everyone.
You can support us for as little as $1 via PayPal at email@example.com.
They were also 30 percent more likely to reach the threshold for cognitive ability where they would be diagnosed with dementia.
The study published in PLOS Medicin say that screening in winter and spring may be a better way of spotting dementia early as symptoms may be masked in the summer and autumn.
The association between season and cognitive function remained significant. An association with seasonality was also seen in levels of Alzheimer’s-related proteins and genes in cerebrospinal fluid and the brain.
“There may be value in increasing dementia-related clinical resources in the winter and early spring when symptoms are likely to be most pronounced,” the authors said. “By shedding light on the mechanisms underlying the seasonal improvement in cognition in the summer and early fall, these findings also open the door to new avenues of treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.”