The medical journal Neurology has reported that people who carry a gene that’s associated with Alzheimer’s disease may lose their sense of smell long before memory and thinking problems occur.
The specific gene reported in this paper is called APOE e4.
Testing a person’s ability to detect odors may be a useful way to predict future problems with cognition.
The study from the Neurology journal surveyed more than 865 people about their ability to detect an odor and identify what they were smelling. Tests were given over five years. Those with memory or thinking problems were tested twice, five years apart. The investigators also took DNA samples.
People who carried the gene variant (APOE e4) for Alzheimer’s were 37% less likely to have good odor detection than people without the gene, the researchers found.
Those with the gene (APOE e4) experienced reduced smell detection from age 65 to 69.
Once the ability to identify odors declined, it declined faster than in those who did not carry the gene.
At the start of the study, thinking and memory skills were similar among the two groups.
Unfortunately, the researchers concluded that thinking skills declined more rapidly among those carrying the gene variant than among those without the gene.
Now for the good news! You have the power to do something about it by being proactive! There is a blood test available that can reveal if you are a carrier of the APOE e4 variant. Contact a functional medicine doctor in your area, share your concern and they can order the blood test to see if you’re a carrier or- contact our office. Knowing gives you the power to do something! And that something can help you enjoy “the best performance of your life!”