Some countries have much higher rates of dementia than others. As the following chart illustrates, not all countries are experiencing the same prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease. The North Atlantic countries of Finland, Iceland and Sweden have some of the highest rates of dementia in the world.
The United States and other developed countries also lead the list. The undeveloped countries across Asia, Africa and South America have the lowest incidence. What causes these regional variations? Could it be an unhealthy or contaminated diet in these countries? Could it be contaminated drinking water? Or is it another source of regional environmental contamination?
Country Alzheimer’s/Dementia (deaths per 100K)
United States 24.8
United Kingdom 17.1
New Zealand 15.2
South Korea 12.0
On a localized basis, the same variations are observed. For example, in the United States, the death rate from Alzheimer’s disease is highest among residents of Washington State (a coastal state). In fact, it’s almost double the national average at 43.6/100,000.
These regional variations seem to indicate that the death rate from Alzheimer’s is not random, but one influenced by environmental and/or dietary factors. Regional spikes also could reflect the infective nature of Alzheimer’s and other forms of prion disease once they have a foothold within a population.
For more information and a current list, please visit http://alzheimerdisease.tv/alzheimers-disease-risk-by-country/