According to an article in the Archives of Neurology, researchers in the Honolulu-Asia Aging Study followed 1,027 Japanese American men across 26 years to understand the relationship between cholesterol levels and dementia.
The researchers found that cholesterol levels in men with dementia — and, in particular, those with Alzheimer’s disease — had declined at least 15 years before the diagnosis and remained lower than cholesterol levels in men without dementia throughout that period.
They concluded, “A decline in serum total cholesterol levels may be associated with early stages in the development of dementia.”
Cholesterol is needed in the brain to form the myelin sheaths that protect the nerves. The brain is affected by any process that lowers brain cholesterol levels.
If you are elderly, do not take any medication that lowers your cholesterol level. No studies have shown that lowering cholesterol in the elderly will enhance longevity.
Also, taking a cholesterol-lowering medication will not significantly reduce your risk of heart attacks or strokes if you are elderly.