kellipsf wrote: ↑Sat Feb 11, 2023 12:21 am
8 months ago I first became aware of the suspected relationship between perimenopause and alzheimer's, and alcohol. I knew I had one copy of ApoE4 but did not know that a drop in estrogen initiates even more havoc for those predisposed for AD. Nor did I know til I stumbled upon a single sentence in a book on menopause that said "Stop drinking if you carry the Apoe4 gene". I queried my endocrinologist and she also said "stop drinking" if you have the gene. Why is no one talking about this? I am 56 and started on HRT's 3 years ago, but so wish I'd been informed and stopped drinking well before last year.
It's begun to be written about for ApoE4 carriers, but only since researchers got large grants to go back and reanalyze many thousands of people followed for decades. Doing so often means taking old blood samples and re-testing them for ApoE status, since it wasn't tested either by doctors or in populations studies until very recently.
Research into prevention of both Alzheimer's and vascular dementia often looks at years of education, exposure to pollution, cognitive baseline scores, and health conditions like high blood pressure, coronary artery disease, Type2 diabetes, obesity, smoking, alcohol use and prior head injuries. All of those are important too, and you may be doing terrifically on those even if you enjoyed alcohol.
Many doctors would be likely to advise the average person that a glass of red wine with dinner may be good for your heart--because for the 75% of the population without ApoE4, that seems to be true!
Here's an excerpt from an article published in 2021 that I like for its readability. One of the coauthors of Precision Nutrition for Alzheimer’s Prevention in ApoE4 Carriers
was, until very recently, the director of the Alzheimer's research center and memory clinic at Weill-Cornell Medical Center in NYC and is a strong believer in the effect of lifestyle on risk.
6.3.4. Limit Alcohol
While light alcohol consumption has been associated with a decreased risk of AD in general , this relationship does not appear to hold in ApoE4 carriers. Consumption of any amount of alcohol may increase the risk of AD for ApoE4 carriers [128,129,130]. In one study, both light and moderate alcohol consumption were associated with improvement in learning and memory for non-carriers, but with a decline in learning and memory for carriers . Other studies found that ApoE4 carriers who consumed alcohol one or more times per month had a higher risk of AD than those who never consumed alcohol  and the risk of AD for carriers increased with increasing amounts of alcohol consumption  These data suggest that alcohol consumption should be limited, especially in ApoE4 carriers.
I have two copies of ApoE4, and am 70 years old and never had the benefit of HRT, which was mistakenly thought to cause heart attacks in menopausal women 20 years ago. (That was only true in a very small percentage of women over age 70; who today are not prescribed HRT.) I rarely have alcohol, but if it's a special occasion, I don't feel I'm risking my brain to have a glass of red or white wine once every 6 months.
You're at a great age to plan for a long, healthy life!