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Living in Greener Pastures Cuts Alzheimer’s Risk

Researchers find people living in towns with lots of green space were least likely to have Alzheimer's or Parkinson's.
summer, still-life, garden

If a person lives in an area rich in foliage, their grass may indeed be greener, at least when it comes to risk of developing Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s diseases. That is according to a large study led by Jochem Klompmaker, Jaime Hart, and Peter James at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston.

In the December 20 JAMA Network Open, they reported that, across the contiguous U.S., people living in towns with lots of green space were least likely to have either neurodegenerative disease. This correlation was strongest in those over 85 and in blacks. The authors think protection may partly stem from less pollution in greener areas.

First author Klompmaker and colleagues correlated residential ZIP code “greenness” with hospital admissions with an AD or PD diagnosis among 61.7 million Medicare beneficiaries over age 65. Eighty-four percent were Caucasian, and 88 percent had an income high enough to exclude them from Medicaid. From 2000 to 2016, there were 7.7 million cases of AD and 1.2 million of PD diagnosed among this cohort.

“This analysis is the largest dataset examined for how the natural environment influences risk of hospitalization for AD and PD,” wrote Caleb (Tuck) Finch, University of Southern California, Los Angeles.

ZIP code greenness refers to the “normalized difference vegetation index,” or the density of vegetation captured on satellite images by infrared sensing. Any bright pixel was deemed to contain chlorophyll—be it grass, shrubs, trees, crops, etc.—and was reported as a ratio of green to non-green pixels.

To read the rest of this article, go to the full article on AlzForum.com : 
Living in Greener Pastures May Cut Risk for Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s


Source:

AlzForum

Reference:

Klompmaker JO, Laden F, Browning MH, Dominici F, Jimenez MP, Ogletree SS, Rigolon A, Zanobetti A, Hart JE, James P. Associations of Greenness, Parks, and Blue Space With Neurodegenerative Disease Hospitalizations Among Older US Adults. JAMA Netw Open. 2022. Dec 1;5(12):e2247665. DOI: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2022.47664

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Hanna Levi Julian

Hanna Levi Julian

This site was inspired by my Mom’s autoimmune dementia.

It is a place where we separate out the wheat from the chaffe, the important articles & videos from each week’s river of news. With a new post on Alzheimer’s or dementia appearing on the internet every 7 minutes, the site’s focus on the best information has been a help to many over the past 15 years. Thanks to our many subscribers for your supportive feedback.

The site is dedicated to all those preserving the dignity of the community of people living with dementia.

Peter Berger, Editor

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This site was inspired by my Mom’s autoimmune dementia.

It is a place where we separate out the wheat from the chaffe, the important articles & videos from each week’s river of news. With a new post on Alzheimer’s or dementia appearing on the internet every 7 minutes, the site’s focus on the best information has been a help to many over the past 15 years. Thanks to our many subscribers for your supportive feedback.

The site is dedicated to all those preserving the dignity of the community of people living with dementia.

Peter Berger, Editor

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