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... Getting married 'cuts Alzheimer's risk' Getting married 'cuts Alzheimer's risk'

5 August 2008

People who are married or who have a long-term partner are less likely to suffer from Alzheimer's in old age, according to a new scientific study.

The research conducted at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, found that singletons are twice as likely to suffer from the condition than those who are happily married.

According to the authors, this is because those who live with people have regular social interaction and see their friends and relatives every day, which can help maintain a healthy and active brain.

Interestingly, the research found that divorcees triple their risk of suffering from Alzheimer's.

Meanwhile, those who have lived alone for their whole lives are doubly at risk of the condition, according to the study.

Research was conducted by looking at results from 1,449 people over a period of 21 years.

Commenting on the findings, Susanne Sorensen, head of research at the Alzheimer's Society, said: "Some evidence suggests remaining socially active may reduce your risk of dementia and living with someone is certainly a good way of increasing social interaction.

"However, singletons shouldn't worry - there are many other ways to reduce your risk of dementia that don't involve popping the question. The best evidence is around eating a Mediterranean diet, exercising regularly and not smoking."