Natural support for healthy mental function
An estimated 6% of the over-60 population suffer from Alzheimer’s disease, while “Senile dementia,” or non-Alzheimer’s senility, affects a similar number. The two diseases are difficult to distinguish, especially early-on. Diagnosis is a matter of clinical judgment on the part of the doctor. The only definitive diagnosis of Alzheimer’s is a post-mortem examination of the brain, where deterioration of brain cells and “scarring” are evident.
It is sometimes difficult for a lay person to distinguish “ordinary forgetfulness” from symptoms of age-related memory changes. Here are symptoms of greater concern: 1.) Memory lapses that occur more frequently and become more severe 2.) Depression, anxiety, or paranoia 3.) Loss of judgment and discrimination 4.) Mood changes: irritability, anger, loss of interest in everyday activities 5.) Loss of awareness of everyday events.
There are many non-Alzheimer’s, non-senility health problems that can cause memory and mood changes. For this reason, it is important to see your doctor for a complete physical examination. Your doctor will be able to discover if you have a health problem that is causing memory changes. Remember, most memory loss is either normal forgetfulness or caused by another illness or lifestyle factor. Secondly, and simultaneously, begin the positive steps outlined below. Simple factors such as B vitamin deficiencies can cause serious mental changes. Don’t let easily correctable memory changes happen to you!
DIET AND LIFESTYLE RECOMMENDATIONS
- Eat a well-balanced diet. Lack of nutrients can cause memory changes.
- Exercise regularly. Exercise improves blood flow, nutrients, and oxygen to the brain.
- Avoid cigarette smoke. Cigarette smoke contains carbon monoxide, which is toxic to the brain.
- “Exercise” your brain: read, work crossword puzzles, use name associations, pay attention to life!
- Avoid aluminum (found in cookware, antiperspirants, antacids, beverage cans). Aluminum and other toxic metal accumulation in the brain is associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
- Take Daily Multi Vitamin and Mineral Supplement. This should include vitamins A,C,E, beta carotene, bioflavonoids, B complex vitamins (especially B1, B6, B12, folic acid), and selenium. Maxi Multi contains optimal daily doses of these nutrients.
- Max EPA (fish oil): 1 cap, 3 times per day with meals to prevent or reverse inflammation. Take higher doses as directed if your hs-CRP tests are elevated. Flax oil is also beneficial but requires a biochemical conversion in the body which is deficient in many people, so fish oil is more certain.
- Citicoline: A double-blind, placebo controlled study found that citicoline improved cognitive performance in Alzheimer’s patients. High-tech imaging showed that it also improved cerebral (brain) blood flow in this group of Alzheimer’s patients. According to the researchers: ” … citicoline (1,000 mg/day) is well tolerated and improves cognitive performance, cerebral blood perfusion and the brain bioelectrical activity pattern in AD [Alzheimer’s Disease] patients.” (1)
Take any or all of these proven neuro-protective substances:
- CoQ10: 50-300mg per day. This powerful antioxidant, produced by the body, diminishes with age. It is especially valuable for all types of heart disease. CHOLESTEROL-LOWERING DRUGS deplete CoQ10.
- Turmeric: 1 capsule, 3 times per day (target dose: 900mg). Potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrin herb, turmeric acts by three different mechanisms to help protect the brain from the presumed causes of Alzheimer’s.
- Ginkgo biloba: 1 cap, 2 times per day. [target dose: 240mg of a 24% flavoneglycoside formula]. Ginkgo is a potent antioxidant that also improves cerebral circulation. This herb is mentioned in The Merck Manual of (conventional) Medicine as being helpful for Alzheimer’s!
- Phosphatidyl Serine: 1 cap (100mgPS), 3 times per day. PS increases brain cell communication by improving membrane fluidity.
- Acetyl-L-Carnitine: 1 cap (500mg), 3 times per day between meals. A-LC acts as a powerful antioxidant in the brain.
- Alpha-Lipoic Acid: 1 cap, 2-3 times per day. This neurological antioxidant chelates free iron from the forebrain, thereby protecting against free-radical induced brain aging.
- Melatonin: this hormone decreases with age. It is a potent antioxidant and one of the only ones to cross the blood-brain barrier. It should be used in almost all cases of any neurological disease and is an important part of longevity and anti-aging programs.
Alzheimer’s disease and Senile Dementia are not an inevitable part of aging even though they are common in our country. Don’t let these memory-robbing diseases deprive you of YOUR Golden Years!
- A hair analysis should be done to rule out heavy metal and aluminum toxicity. Most conventional medical doctors do not perform this test, even though it is reliable for detecting heavy metals.
- Women and men of menopausal age (40-55) should have hormone levels evaluated. A shift in the amount of sex hormones can cause memory changes.
- Women of menstrual age should avoid taking ginkgo regularly. This herb has a blood-thinning effect and can cause heavier-than-normal menstrual bleeding. Consider Hypericum (St. John’s Wort) herb instead.
Remembering Reagan, Avoiding Alzheimer’s
1.) Alvarez XA, Mouzo R, Pichel V, Pérez P, Laredo M, Fernández-Novoa L, Corzo L, Zas R, Alcaraz M, Secades JJ, Lozano R, Cacabelos R., Methods Find Exp Clin Pharmacol. 1999 Nov;21(9):633-44. Double-blind placebo-controlled study with citicoline in APOE genotyped Alzheimer’s disease patients. Effects on cognitive performance, brain bioelectrical activity and cerebral perfusion. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10669911