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Dementia hardly ever occurs in two indigenous peoples – Wel.nl

Among the Tsimans and Moseten, only 1 percent of the elderly suffer from dementia. So we could potentially learn a lot from the two indigenous peoples in Bolivia.

The researchers found only five cases of dementia among 435 Tsimane people and one case among 169 Mosets aged 60 and older, less than 1 percent. By comparison, in the US, more than 11 percent of people age 65 and older have dementia. “Something in the pre-industrial lifestyle seems to protect the older Tsimans and Moseten from dementia,” said researcher Margaret Gatz.

Previous research has also shown that the 17,000 Tsimans have extremely good heart health. Nine out of ten are at no risk of heart disease. It now appears that their brains also stay healthy for much longer.

Their lifestyle seems a logical explanation. They are in motion all their lives, whether they hunt, cultivate the land by hand, fish or gather food in the forest. Moreover, their food is all unprocessed. They have no cookies, chips or alcohol.

The fact that these two peoples are also much healthier than other indigenous peoples is probably because the Tsimans and Mosetes are still completely isolated, where other indigenous people do have contact with the inhabited world and also adopt that lifestyle.

A healthy lifestyle with plenty of exercise and unprocessed products may therefore be able to halt the rapid increase in the number of dementia patients. It is currently expected that by 2050, 153 million people worldwide will suffer from Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia.

Bron (nen): Knowledges

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