Leading a healthy lifestyle may be one way for individuals to improve their overall health. In contrast, people who smoke may be increasing their risk to develop disorders such as Alzheimer's disease or dementia, according to a new study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine.
In research conducted at the University of Eastern Finland and Kuopio University Hospital in Finland, scientists analyzed data from more than 21,000 people who had been previously surveyed between 1978 and 1985. The participants were all between 50 and 60 years old.
The development of dementia and Alzheimer's disease was tracked for more than a decade, beginning in 1994 until 2008.
More than 25 percent of the subjects developed dementia during this time, including 1,136 who were diagnosed with Alzheimer's. Approximately 416 of the participants also developed vascular dementia. The diagnosis of these disorders was compared between the smoking and non-smoking individuals.
Researchers indicated that those who had smoked more than two packs each day during their middle-aged years were more than twice as likely to be diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimer's later in life.