HFC Co-Founder Seth Rogen Voiced Instructional Modules Aimed at High School and College Students
Study Findings Published in Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology
LOS ANGELES, July 16, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Seth Rogen and Lauren Miller Rogen's HFC, a national non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness, inspiring change, and accelerating progress in Alzheimer's care, prevention, research, and support, announced the results of a study researching the effectiveness of online Alzheimer's and brain health education for high school and college students. In collaboration with the educational website Alzheimer's Universe (AlzU.org) and led by Dr. Richard S. Isaacson, director of the Alzheimer's Prevention Clinic at Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian, the randomized controlled trial engaged over 700 high school and college students ages 14-24.
The trial (NCT03149380), titled Effectiveness of Online Alzheimer's and Brain Health Education for High School and College Students: A Randomized Controlled Trial, was published in the July 14, 2020, online issue of Neurology®. The study evaluated the effectiveness of online education on Alzheimer's disease (AD) knowledge, attitudes, and behavioral intent using an online portal providing evidence-based AD education. The study recruited students by using Facebook and Instagram advertising, and tested three lesson variations, including interactive webinar-lessons narrated by Seth Rogen (Celebrity-Webinar), interactive webinar-lessons narrated by a physician (Doctor-Webinar), and non-interactive video lessons with Seth Rogen (Celebrity-Video) against the control group, which received lessons that included the same educational content and imagery but without the interactive components or voiceovers by Rogen or Dr. Isaacson.
According to the research, online education involving a celebrity may be an effective approach to teach college students about potential AD-risk reduction strategies. For both high school and college students, celebrity and doctor-led lessons resulted in greater awareness that nutrition and exercise may reduce AD risk compared to the control group. After completing the celebrity-led lessons, college students felt more hopeful that AD research would yield new treatments and methods of prevention, and were more likely to recommend AlzU.org to their peers versus those who completed the doctor-led and control lessons. College students also reported being more willing to volunteer for AD-causes and pursue healthcare careers than the control group as a result of completing the online course. Considering that several studies have found that Alzheimer's disease can begin 20-30 years before the onset of cognitive symptoms, this new study highlights that it is essential to educate younger generations of high school and college students on brain-healthy lifestyles that may reduce AD-risk.
"People think of Alzheimer's as a disease that only affects older people, but that's not the case," said HFC founders Seth Rogen and Lauren Miller Rogen. "We hope that these results will be pivotal in spreading this message. There is more work to be done, but this research indicates we are on the right track to help future generations prevent this horrible disease."
Alzheimer's is the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States. But life choices made today may impact brain health in the future. In fact, 1 out of every 3 cases of Alzheimer's may be preventable through education and behaviors that affect AD risk factors such as high blood pressure, smoking, obesity, diabetes, physical inactivity and depression.
"Most people are unaware that Alzheimer's disease starts in the brain decades before the first symptoms of memory loss begin, and that there are many risk factors that can be addressed early on in life to help protect the brain over time," Dr. Isaacson noted. "Students in high school, college, and beyond learn about many topics in their health education classes, but the subject of brain health is commonly overlooked. We hope that this study is the start of a transformation in how students of all ages think about and value their brains."
Since its inception, HFC has raised over $13 million, primarily through the organization's annual variety shows in both Los Angeles and New York. Last year, HFC not only launched a Brain Health Dinner Series but expanded the LA event in both size and scope. The nonprofit hosted the first-ever HFC County Fair which featured a breadth of celebrities and comedians hosting the rides and game booths as well as a performance from Grammy-award winning musician Anderson .Paak, a half-pipe show starring the legendary Tony Hawk, a brain-health scavenger hunt, various activations such as a puppy-kissing booth, food trucks, and merchandise stands. HFC's signature events raise much-needed Alzheimer's awareness and the proceeds fund HFC's care and support programs for Alzheimer's caregivers, prevention-focused research such as Dr. Isaacson's study, and HFC's brain-health education initiatives. In partnership with Home Instead Senior Care, HFC has awarded over 290,000 hours of in-home care relief to Alzheimer's family caregivers through its's North American Caregiver Respite Grant Program.
Founded in 2012 by Seth Rogen and Lauren Miller Rogen, HFC is a national non-profit organization whose mission is to care for families facing this disease, educate young people about living a brain-healthy life, and activate the next generation of Alzheimer's advocates.
HFC is accelerating progress in Alzheimer's care, prevention, and support all while bringing many laughs and light to the Alzheimer's space. Our movement is also bringing much-needed awareness to this disease through our signature events. We've launched a Brain Health Dinner Series, hosted nine star-studded variety shows and one comedian-filled carnival, and have a comedy special currently streaming on Netflix. Thanks to the ongoing support of our generous donors, we've raised over $13 million and awarded over 290,000 hours of in-home care relief to Alzheimer's family caregivers through our North American Caregiver Respite Grant Program. In addition to providing caregiver respite, HFC organizes online support groups to build caregiver community and connectivity, engages young people across the country to become Alzheimer's advocates, funds prevention-focused and brain-health research, and teaches people how to care for the health of their brains today, so they can reduce their risk tomorrow.
While there isn't a cure, there is care.
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