Besides the heartache of observing the AD victim slide slowly downhill, caregivers are under a lot of stress and their own health is at risk. The average AD patient lives from seven to ten years after diagnosed by a physician. It is important to see a doctor as soon as symptoms are noticed as AD could mask as other afflictions.
Start Now to Maintain Your Health
Scientific research opens the possibility of following natural health tips to keep the Alzheimer’s threat away. Suggestions such as keeping an active body and mind, eating healthy, taking omega-3 fish oil capsules and being a normal weight have all been recognized in research studies.
Additional Guidelines to Outwit AD
Besides the natural health ideas noted above, research has weighed in on further courses of action to maintain a healthy lifestyle and lower your risk of AD.
- As appearing in the February 2005 Journal of Biological Chemistry, a research study at UCLA of rats found that the spice turmeric containing the photochemical curcumin shrinks the protein deposits that build up in the brain. (A human study is now going on.) Why? Turmeric is used extensively in Indian cooking and India has one of the lowest AD rates in the world.
- A 2006 research study at Vanderbilt University of 1600 people found that those who drank at least three glasses (4 oz. servings) of 100% fruit or vegetable juice per week cut their risk of dementia by 76%. Why? Polyphenols, healthy antioxidants in plants, are in the 100% juices.
- A 2007 research study at Columbia University reported in the Archives of Neurology found that of 965 people aged 65 or over followed for six years, those with the highest intake of folic acid had the lowest risk of developing Alzheimer’s. Why? Folic acid and vitamin B6 (food or supplements), and vitamin B12 (supplements) help to eliminate an amino acid called homocysteine which is linked to inflammation and Alzheimer’s. David Perlmutter, M.D., promotes the intake of these three B-vitamins.
- Appearing in the October 2005 Archives of Neurology , a 20-year research study at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden found that people with high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity at middle age were six times as likely to end up with dementia in later life than those without any of the three markers. Why? High blood pressure, high cholesterol, and being overweight put the body under stress and start a downhill spiral.
- A Netherlands research study announced in 2008 found that smoking increases the risk of Alzheimer’s by as much as 50% in people over 50 who don’t even have a genetic predisposition to the disease. Why? Smoking is an all-around bad poison for the body.
Lower the Threat of Alzheimer’s with Research
Here’s a summary based on the above research of what you can do now to try and prevent AD.
- Use the spice turmeric regularly in your cooking and/or take turmeric capsules.
- Drink 100% fruit or vegetable juice daily to get healthy antioxidants into your system.
- Eat a bowl of whole grain cereal every morning with its 400 mcg of folic acid, and consider taking, along with a multivitamin, B-complex vitamins.
- Give your body a fighting chance. Lower high blood pressure; most people can lower it naturally by exercising and watching the salt (most of it in processed food). Don’t have high cholesterol; most individuals can lower it by exercising. And don’t be overweight! Being overweight or obese, especially visceral fat in the abdomen is the gateway to many chronic illnesses. Lose weight by eating correctly and exercising.
- Don’t smoke.
The Bottom Line
Besides eating healthy, taking omega-3 fish oil, exercising, being a normal weight and doing mentally stimulating activities, the additional five suggestions above are also backed by research. Don’t let a bad lifestyle add up to AD in later life; start now to diminish the AD threat.
This article is for educational purposes only. Discuss lifestyle changes with your doctor and never stop taking any current medications without consulting your physician.