Chris Hemsworth will “take some time off” from work after finding out that he has an increased risk for the Alzheimer’s disease.
According to a report by Vanity Fair, this life-changing discovery came while he was working on his new docuseries Limitless, which is “about pushing back on the natural decline that comes with time and aging.”
In the National Geographic show, he went through a series of genetic tests to scan his DNA and learn “what, if anything, the future might have waiting for him.” The results, unfortunately, showed his “biggest fear”—that he’s eight to 10 times more likely to develop the disease in the future.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention refers to Alzheimer’s as “the most common type of dementia.” Affecting certain parts of the brain, it’s “a progressive disease beginning with mild memory loss and possibly leading to loss of the ability to carry on a conversation and respond to the environment.”
Vanity Fair reported that Hemsworth’s genetic makeup “includes two copies of the gene APOE4, one from his mother, the other from his father, which studies have linked to an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease.” The National Institutes of Health said that having both is rare, consisting only 2-3% of the population.
Hemsworth stressed that it’s not a “hard diagnosis” of Alzheimer’s, but it’s “cause for concern,” Vanity Fair reported.
“My concern was I just didn’t want to manipulate it and overdramatize it, and make it into some sort of hokey grab at empathy, or whatever, for entertainment. It’s not like I’ve been handed my resignation,” he said in a VF interview.
The findings, mused Hemsworth, “really triggered something in me to want to take some time off.” He added, “And since we finished the show, I’ve been completing the things I was already contracted to do.”
“Now when I finish this tour this week, I’m going home and I’m going to have a good chunk of time off and just simplify. Be with the kids, be with my wife,” he continued.