Blood vessel problems such as fatty plaque buildup in arteries or stiffening of the arteries are well-known contributors to heart disease—but they can damage brain function as well. That means that keeping your heart healthy will also help keep your cognitive abilities sharp.“An estimated one-third of all cases of dementia, including those identified as Alzheimer’s, can be attributed to vascular factors,” said Albert Hofman, chair of the Department of Epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, in a Nov. 9, 2016 Harvard Health Blog post.Tiny blockages in the brain’s small vessels can lead to subtle, “silent” strokes. Blood clots in major arteries can lead to an overt stroke, in which large portions of brain tissue die. Both types of stroke can lead to dementia.Reducing your cardiovascular risks by getting regular physical activity, quitting smoking, managing blood sugar and cholesterol levels, eating a healthy diet, and maintaining a healthy weight are all key to keeping your heart healthy—and your brain too. It’s also important to keep high blood pressure, the leading cause of stroke, in check. Read Full Story
BOSTON (AP) — Former U.S. Rep. Joe Kennedy III says he has no plans to run for office anytime soon and has launched a new project aimed in part at supporting political races considered “unwinnable” by the Democratic Party. Kennedy had opted not to seek reelection last year to pursue an unsuccessful challenge to his fellow Democrat, U.S. Sen. Edward Markey. Kennedy unveiled what he called the Groundwork Project in an email to supporters Wednesday. Kennedy said after he lost he weighed what to do with his network of supporters and decided to channel that energy toward people and causes that need it.