Vascular risk factors are known to be associated with Alzheimer's i.e., obesity (BMI > 30), smoking, hypertension, diabetes and high cholesterol. In this study, researchers found that those with vascular risk factors in middle age (especially those that are APOE4 allele positive) had a greater amyloid (the protein found in excess in Alzheimer's brains) burden in their brains later in life.
However, late-life vascular risk factors were NOT associated with an increased risk later in life.
Therefore, treatment of vascular risk factors in MIDLIFE while likely to be asymptomatic, may be critical in reducing the development of an underlying AD process.
JAMA 2017 April 11;317:1443