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Dementia costs the UK £23 billion a year and is preventable. Patrick Holford, 2010

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Dementia costs the UK £23 billion a year and is preventable. Patrick Holford, 2010

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Britain’s dementia crisis is worse than feared and costs Britain £23bn a year – more than cancer and heart disease combined – but receives a fraction of the funding, according to a study published this month.
The number of people with dementia, at 822,000, is 17% higher than has previously been estimated and will pass the 1 million mark before 2025, the Oxford university study has found. But the single most important message for the prevention of Alzheimer's disease is the discovery of the involvement of the amino acid homocysteine in the development of Alzheimer's disease. Early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease gives the best possible opportunity for prevention; studies have found that levels of homocysteine can be reduced with high dose B vitamins and dietary changes, thereby preventing Alzheimer's disease, and reversing early stage memory loss.

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