Dementia becomes main cause of death in UK, latest figures reveal

Dementia is now the leading cause of death in England and Wales, new figures from the UK’s Office of National Statistics reveal.

The neurological disorder has now overtaken coronary heart disease at the top of the table. It was the cause of 61,686 deaths registered in 2015, equivalent to 11.6 per cent of the total figure. The new ONS data also shows women are more susceptible to the deadly disease than men. This may be because women are living longer than men – with the risk of developing dementia increasing with age.

Dementia killed more than twice the amount of women than men, with 41,283 losing their lives as a result of the disease, new figures show.

Its recognised that over-65s are most at risk from the disease as a result of their increased blood pressure and changes in the immune system. But records of the growing mortality rates of dementia may be because doctors are better at diagnosing the disease. The figures show that killed more than twice the amount of women than men, with 41,283 losing their lives as a result of the disease.

Elizabeth McLaren, head of life event statistics at ONS, said: ‘In 2015, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease became the leading cause of death in part because people are simply living longer but also because of improved detection and diagnosis.’

However, coronary heart disease, which has been at the top of the death table since the new figures began in 2011, was the leading cause of death in males.Figures show 36,731 men fell victim to the planet’s biggest killer – but no longer England and Wales’, which is caused by smoking, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. While 20,403 men died as a result of having dementia. Death rates from dementia have more than doubled over the last five years due to people living longer than ever before and developing the condition.

Despite the latest figures, coronary heart disease is still believed to be responsible for more than seven million global deaths yearly. It was also found to be behind 11.5 per cent of the total 529,655 deaths.

But the new figures show a large variation among age groups as people over 80 were most likely to die from dementia and Alzheimer’s.

While suicide was the leading cause of deaths for adults younger than 35. Meanwhile, breast cancer remains the leading cause of death for women aged between 35 and 49.

The statistics also found that when all forms of cancer are grouped together, it was the most common form of death – responsible for 27.9 per cent of all cases, with irculatory disease, such as heart disease and strokes were responsible for 26.2 per cent.

However, the nation’s previous leading killer, coronary heart disease, was still responsible for killing most males, nearly double that of dementia

Calorie restriction may promote brain longevity

New York: Restricting calorie intake may prevent Alzheimer’s Disease by triggering activity in the brain associated with longevity, a study by the Mount Sinai School of Medicine suggests.

The study, published in the July 2006 issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry, is the first to show that restricting caloric intake, specifically carbohydrates, may prevent Alzheimer’s.

Giulio Maria Pasinetti MD, PhD, Professor of Psychiatry and Nuroscience, Director of the Neuroinflammation Research Center at the school says that lifestyle factors such as diet may be crucial to managing the diease.

She said: “This research, however, is the first to show a connection between nutrition and Alzheimer’s Disease neuropathy by defining mechanistic pathways in the brain and scrutinizing biochemical functions. We hope these findings further unlock the mystery of Alzheimer’s and bring hope to the millions of Americans suffering from this disease.”

Alzheimer’s is one of the most feared diseases of ageing and there are currently no cures. Although genetics are thought to be responsible for early onset, this is not the case in the most common form in later life.

People with Alzheimer’s have high levels of beta-amyloid peptides that cause plaque buildup in the brain – though this cannot be seen until after death. Beta-amyloid peptides activate SIRT1, a member of a broad family of proteins known as sirtuins which influence a variety of functions including metabolism and aging.

In the Mount Sinai study it was found that mice were subjected to dietary calorie restriction, based on low carbohydrates food, had reduced beta-amyloid peptides in the brain. Whilst a high caloric intake based on saturated fat was shown to increase levels of beta-amyloid peptides.

It is the first study to show that calorie restriction can promote SIRTI, a molecule associated with brain longevity, and may activate alpha-secretase which can prevent plaque build-up in the brain. study finds that a high caloric intake based on saturated fat promotes AD type beta-amyloidosis, while caloric restriction based on reduced carbohydrate intake is able to prevent it.

Among lifestyle factors influencing AD, recent studies strongly support the evidence that caloric intake may play a role in the relative risk for AD clinical dementia. Most importantly, as mechanistic pathways are defined and their biochemical functions scrutinized, the evidence supporting a direct link between nutrition and AD neuropathology continues to grow.