Sixty-five year old Ed Vitasa takes medication to keep his high cholesterol under control.
"It's been steady below 150, so I'm feeling good right now," Vitasa said.
His doctor says Ed's a healthy ratio of good to bad cholesterol, which is important for his cardiovascular health. Now a new study finds it could also help keep his brain healthy. New research from the University of Southern California shows that higher HDL, or good cholesterol, and lower LDL, or bad cholesterol, are associated with lower levels of amyloid plaque deposits in the brain. The deposits are believed to be a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease.
"Having that favorable cholesterol panel may be associated with a lower risk of Alzheimer's disease," said Dr. Nerses Sanossian with the Keck School of Medicine of USC.
Researchers looked at cholesterol levels and brain scans in nearly 75 older patients. Neurologist Dr. Sanossian says more study is needed to confirm the link but says there are many reasons to maintain a healthy lifestyle. "Less heart disease, less stroke," he said.
Ed says he's motivated to stay healthy, not only for his heart but his brain too. "Makes me feel good. I mean I'm taking the right step," Vitasa said.
He's eating well, exercising, and says at 65 he feels his mind is sharp.
Teresa Garcia - CBS News
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