Alzheimer's: a type of dementia that causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior.
Alzheimer's disease accounts for anywhere from 50% to 80% of dementia cases so it is not uncommon to have had an encounter, either with a relative or family friend, with Alzheimer's and seen first hand the effects of the disease and the 7 stages of the disease. As a patient moves through the 7 stages they go from not being able to remember new information to losing the ability to respond to their environment.
While researchers are not sure on what causes Alzheimer's, they have found a correlation between Alzheimer's and the presence of plaques and tangles in the brain. Though most people develop some plaques and tangles as they age, those with Alzheimer's tend to develop more and in a predictable pattern starting from areas important to memory and then spreading to other areas of the brain.
Currently there is no cure for Alzheimer's so the idea of prevention is a big one with many different ideas ranging from preventive drug treatments to something as simple as stay healthy through diet and exercise. With no conclusive evidence of a certain cure or prevention method many ideas abound on how to deal with the disease. The leading idea, however, is that a healthy lifestyle can help prevent the onset of Alzheimer's which marks yet another reason why it is important to stay healthy with diet and exercise.