Getting a good night’s sleep is important for leading a healthy life – we’ve been hearing this since childhood. But can having a sound sleep help in preventing one of the most dreadful diseases called Alzheimer’s?
Amyloid proteins and Alzheimer’s disease have a very strong relation. The amyloid proteins are a waste product of the energy used when our brain communicates. During a sound sleep when memories are consolidated, the brain removes the excess amyloid proteins and prevents them from forming a plaque. When sleep gets interrupted, the work of the brain gets disturbed and the amyloid proteins build up to form a plaque on the brain tissue. According to scientists, this is the beginning of Alzheimer’s disease and it can take years for the symptoms to appear.
The question whether “improper sleep causes amyloid plaque or amyloid plaque causes poor sleep” is very similar to the chicken-and-egg scenario. As per a 2015 study in Nature Neuroscience, it was seen that people with the maximum amount of amyloid in the brain had the poorest sleep. Apart from that, they were worse in their memory tests. Another research has shown strong evidence that aerobic exercises can play a major role in reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Now, exercise is also known to improve the quality of sleep.
Weight loss is also associated with sleep quality. We often find obese people suffering from sleeping problems. While there’s still nothing concrete on the direct relation between quality sleep and Alzheimer’s disease, studies have definitely shown an indirect relation between the two. For this reason, doctors always suggest to never ignore any sleep disorders like sleep apnea, insomnia or frequently waking up at night to use the bathroom.
Finally, we can conclude that having a sound sleep is essential for the overall health of the body, and it can also play a part in preventing Alzheimer’s disease.
If you’re suffering from any sleep disorder or memory loss, it is extremely important to visit a doctor without further delay. The doctor might recommend you a blood test to eliminate other causes of memory loss like Vitamin deficiency or thyroid disorder. Also, make sure that the pathlab where you’re getting your test done has qualified doctors and scientific staff. You can even use the blood sample collection from home facility to save precious time.
Sleep well, stay disease-free!