Flu vaccine could lower your risk for Alzheimer’s disease, according to Alzheimer’s Association

Published: Nov. 3, 2022 at 5:27 PM CDT
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ST. LOUIS (KMOV) - Doctors are warning ahead of flu season about the chance of a “triple threat” with the flu, RSV and COVID-19.

New research shows getting the flu vaccine can also lower your chances of getting Alzheimer’s.

The Alzheimer’s Association says if you get a flu vaccine, there is a 17% reduction in Alzheimer’s incidence. If you get a flu vaccine more frequently, that was associated with an additional 13% reduction.

Deborah Jobe is living with early-onset dementia after being diagnosed three years ago. Jobe says hearing this information gives her some hope.

“Science is a wonderful thing,” Jobe says.

Jobe says she does everything she can to stay healthy and try to slow down her memory loss. Part of those efforts also included getting the flu shot last week.

“To extend my quality of life and that’s one item we can put in our toolbox now to add that little extra boost,” Jobe says. “I want to preserve as much as I can for as long as I can.”

Sarah Lovegreen with the Alzheimer’s Association says keeping your respiratory system healthy can have a positive long-term impact on the brain.

“Every little step that we can take to really stay healthy and avoid infections or other chronic conditions, it’s going to boost our cognitive health,” Lovegreen says.

Lovegreen is encouraging everyone to get a flu shot for the added level of protection, especially those who are caretakers for people living with Alzheimer’s.

“These are easy for us to access,” Lovegreen says. “We can get them at our doctor. We can get them at the pharmacy on the corner.”

Jobe wants to stay as independent as possible for as long as possible.

“We want to give everything we can to further protect ourselves and these studies that are coming out, granted there’s more research that needs to be done, but it’s such a bright spot,” Jobe says.