Is it possible to prevent Alzheimer’s if you have good sleep in your early life? Yes, this is true if a new study has to be believed. A group of researchers from the University of California-Berkeley (US) said that one can defend against Alzheimer’s if one has deep sleep early in life.
During deep sleep, the brain washes itself and as such there may be the chance to turn back the clock by getting deeper, restorative sleep earlier in life.
Matthew Walker, neuroscientist at UC Berkeley, was quoted as saying that sleep is almost like a crystal ball telling one when and how fast Alzheimer’s pathology will develop in the brain. The findings are published in Current Biology journal.
The researchers analysed 32 healthy older adults who were in their 60s, 70s and 80s against build-up in their brains of toxic plaque known as beta-amyloid. The beta- amlyoid is a key player in Alzheimer’s disease. It destroys memory pathways and other brain functions.
Each of the participants slept for eight hours while undergoing polysomnography, a battery of tests that record brain waves, blood-oxygen levels, heart rate, and other physiological measures of sleep quality.
In the findings, they found that beta-amyloid levels increased in participants who experienced more fragmented sleep and less non-rapid eye movement. The authors of the study said that they were able to assess how sleep quality predicts changes in beta-amyloid plaques across multiple time points.
The researchers said that sleep was much important in life and one should practice good sleep in their early life. They said that if sleep is effectively measured, it could help to estimate where the amyloid build-up would be.