California

Rates of dementia are 11 times lower in Amazonian tribe with ‘healthiest hearts ever studied’

A remote Amazonian tribe that has amazed scientists for decades may have clues to strike demintens.

Experts have found that rates of memory-disturbing disorder are up to 11 times lower among the native Tsimane community, compared to Westerners.

University of Southern California researchers believe that the 16,000-strong group’s ‘pre-industrial lifestyle for existence’ could explain the difference.

The Tsimane, who are said to have the healthiest hearts they have ever studied, live deep in the Bolivian jungle and traditionally hunt and feed for food, using poisonous vines and arrows and bows. Their diet is low in levels of fat and sugar.

The hunter-gatherer Tsimane and Mosetian communities in the Bolivian Amazon have dementia rates that are 11 times lower than in the US, a study claimed today

The tribe of more than 16,000 is extremely active in their daily lives with hunting and fishing, and eating a diet low in fat and sugars. Photo: A Tsimane child climbs into a tree in search of a coconut

The tribe of more than 16,000 is extremely active in their daily lives with hunting and fishing, and eating a diet low in fat and sugars. Photo: A Tsimane child climbs into a tree in search of a coconut

The farming community Tsimane (pictured) from lowland Bolivia was once said to have the 'healthiest hearts ever studied'

The farming community Tsimane (pictured) from lowland Bolivia was once said to have the ‘healthiest hearts ever studied’

The Tsimane is a tribe of about 16,000 people who live along the banks of the Maniqui River in the Bolivian Amazon.

The Tsimane is a tribe of about 16,000 people who live along the banks of the Maniqui River in the Bolivian Amazon.

WHY DO TSIMAN PEOPLE HAVE THE ‘HEALTHIEST HEARTS’?

The University of New Mexico, which conducted a 2017 study, reported that the Tsimane had better cardiovascular health than has ever been measured in any other population.

More than 700 people over the age of 40 from the Tsimane population were involved in the study.

Scientists found that nearly nine out of ten participants had clear arteries that showed no risk of heart disease.

Nearly two-thirds of people over 75 were almost risk-free and only eight percent had a moderate to high risk level.

One 80-year-old had arteries similar to those of Americans in their mid-fifties.

Tsimane also have low blood pressure.

People have extremely healthy arteries due to their active lifestyle.

Professor Hillard Kaplan, who led the study, said: ‘Their lifestyle suggests that a diet low in saturated fats and high in unprocessed high-fiber carbohydrates, along with wild game and fish, can not smoke and be active all day long. prevent hardening of the arteries of the heart. ‘

“Our previous work showed that the Tsimane have the healthiest hearts they have ever studied,” said senior author Professor Michael Gurven.

Scientists analyzed dementia rates in the 1960s in the Tsimane community and neighboring Moset tribe – just along the Maniqui River.

They used CT brain scans and neurological tests to see if any of the volunteers had dementia or another sign of brain decay.

Researchers also provided stem cell questionnaires, facilitated by translators, to determine how cognitive impairment could affect their lives.

Just five of the 435 Tsimane people and one of the 169 Mosetics group had dementia.

This was equal to a rate of about one percent, the team wrote Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.

By comparison, as many as 11 percent of 65-plus people have the syndrome in the US. Rates are slightly lower in the UK at around seven per cent.

Lead author Professor Margaret Gatz, an expert on aging and preventive medicine at USC, said: ‘Something about the pre-industrial lifestyle for subsistence seems to protect older Tsimane and Mosetics against dementia.’

But the team also found up to 10 percent of Tsimane and Mosetic people had mild cognitive impairment – with some memory, language or spatial awareness loss.

These were similar rates to those found in the West, the authors said.

They could not explain why MCI rates were normal while dementia was so low, but found that those who had both conditions were more likely to have calcium deposits in the arteries that supply the first part of the brain.

Calcification can occur due to rare genetic disorders like inflammation and are different from plaque buildup caused by high cholesterol diets that are common in the West.

While they were higher in those with MCI, calcification remained high across the entire Tsimane tribe, with experts saying further research would be needed to investigate the levels.

More than 70 percent of the Tsimane diet consists of high-fiber carbohydrates, including rice, plantain, yuca, corn, nuts and fruits.

The strains eat on average only 38g of fat per day, 11g of saturated fat and no trans fats.

Co-author Professor Hillard Kaplan, an anthropologist who has studied the Tsimane for 20 years, said the findings could help with strategies to deal with the growing problem of dementia.

Rates are expected to triple by 2050, with 150 million predicted to live up to the condition then.

Experts blame the aging population, air pollution and sedentary lifestyle for the increase.

Professor Kaplan said: ‘We are in a race for solutions to the growing prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.

‘Looking at these different populations expands and accelerates our understanding of these diseases and generates new insights.’

Co-author Professor Benjamin Trumble, an evolutionary biologist at Arizona State University, suggested that abandoning Western sedentary lifestyles could help prevent dementia.

He said: ‘By working with populations like the Tsimane, we can get a better understanding of what human health was like in different environments before industrialization.

‘What we do know is that sedentary, urban, industrial life is fairly new compared to how our ancestors lived more than 99 percent of humanity’s existence.’

Dementia is one of the leading causes of death in the UK, contributing to 17 per cent of deaths from 2011 to 2018, with the proportion expected to continue to increase in the coming years.

Exercising and eating a healthy diet can help prevent the onset by slowing down shrinkage in the hippocampus – the part of the brain that deals with memory.

WHO ARE THE TSIMANE STEM?

The Tsimane is a tribe of about 16,000 people who live along the banks of the Maniqui River in the Bolivian Amazon.

Unlike other Amazon tribes, the group has remained isolated from modern society since rejecting the advances of Jesuit missionaries in the late 17th century.

The tribe, consisting of 80 small villages, spread across the rainforest, is one of the last groups in the world that survives only by feeding, fishing and hunting.

They fish with the help of bow and arrow and poisonous vines, hunt with machetes and track dogs.

Despite their rough lifestyle, Tsimane men have a third less testosterone than Western men, but the testosterone levels of Bolivian forage farmers do not decrease with age.

Their stable testosterone levels mean that the tribe rarely suffers from obesity, heart disease and other diseases associated with older age.

Tsimane women’s breast milk is higher in omega-3 fatty acids, crucial for brain development, than milk produced by western women.

The average Tsimane family has nine children, though about five percent die before their first birthday and 15 percent die before five years.

More than 70 percent of the Tsimane diet consists of high-fiber carbohydrates, including rice, plantain, cassava, corn, nuts, and fruits.

The strains eat only 38g of fat per day, 11g of saturated fat and no trans fats.

The Tsiname are traditionally animists, believing that supernatural creatures living in the forest control their fortunes.

They brew cassava beer in enormous barrels, a crucial part of social events that bring families and villages together.

They speak Tsimane as their primary language – a language that is completely distinguishable from other indigenous groups, even a few miles away. But many also speak Spanish because of recent bilingual education.

The small number of Tsimane living around the city of San Borja have motorcycles and use mobile phones, but further on the Maniqui River, the life of the tribes is much more traditional.

Rates of dementia are 11 times lower in Amazonian tribe with ‘healthiest hearts ever studied’ Source link Rates of dementia are 11 times lower in Amazonian tribe with ‘healthiest hearts ever studied’

Related Articles

Back to top button