Researchers with the universities of Cambridge and Michigan tested saliva samples of nearly 5,000 non-smokers over age 50. They were looking for cotinine - a product of nicotine that can be found in saliva for about a day after exposure to smoke. Participants were also assessed for brain function and cognitive impairment.
The study found people with the highest cotinine levels had a 44 per cent increased risk of cognitive impairment, compared to people with the lowest cotinine levels.
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