Alzheimer’s: The word conjures up scary thoughts of slowly losing your memory as you become a shell of your former self. Experts project that diagnoses of dementia, of which Alzheimer’s is the primary cause, will triple worldwide by 2050. But scientists tell us that preventative measures can go a long way in protecting the brain from memory loss diseases, and they are as simple as doing things like making changes in your diet.
Here are 10 super foods that work to boost brain power and, in turn, lessen your chances of suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. No one food has been shown to prevent Alzheimer’s disease, but healthy eating habits appear to be one of the top factors in lowering your risk for developing Alzheimer’s or dementia.
1. Wild Salmon, Tuna, Sardines (Omega-3 Fatty Acids)
The American Heart Association recommends eating fish at least twice a week because it contains vital omega-3 fatty acids. These good fats help the body function properly and may slow cognitive decline by 10 percent, studies show.
“The main concept is that a diet rich in Omega 3 fatty acids creates BDNF (brain derived neurotrophic factor), a protein between nerve cells that helps increase the strength between connections,” said Michael Gonzalez-Wallace, author of “Super Body Super Brain.” Trout, mackerel, and herring are also good choices, and taking a fish oil vitamin can also help your body obtain this much-needed nutrient. (more…)
When I was told that there could be another type of diabetes all I could do was cringe. With the rate at which diagnosis of type 2 is rising, adding one more type to mix is an overwhelming thought.
Type 3 diabetes was first discovered in 2005. A study from Brown University has linked that eating too much sugar has an effect on brain function. Insulin resistance means that circulating insulin is not being used the way it should to get glucose into cells. If the brain does not receive the energy and nourishment it needs, it begins to deteriorate, and those deteriorating brain cells can result in confusion and memory loss. Over the long term, more permanent memory loss could progress to Alzheimer’s disease.
The nutrition recommendations to help prevent type 3 diabetes are the same as they are for type 2, which include eating sugar in moderation, managing your weight, and eating smaller portion sizes. More studies will need to be conducted to confirm that type 3 diabetes is a separate form of diabetes versus a complication of type 2 diabetes. (more…)
There have been many speculations as to the cause of Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia. Currently, there is no cure for the condition and as it progresses it worsens, often causing memory loss, mood swings, aggression and confusion, and eventually leading to death.
Though Alzheimer’s was formerly thought to be a disease of age, a growing body of research now suggests that it may be a metabolic disease – linking it to poor diet. As reported by the Guardian, scientists have even gone so far as to call it type 3 diabetes.
This news is especially concerning as Alzheimer’s currently affects an estimated 35 million people worldwide, and that number is expected to reach 100 million by 2050. Equally alarming are projected growth rates of type 2 diabetes in the U.S. alone, which are also expected to triple in the next several decades.
These speculations are tied to two potential factors: 1) Alzheimer’s causes a lack of natural insulin in the body, or 2) it causes an impairment of the brain’s ability to respond it. Suspicions of the link continue to rise as those who die from Alzheimer’s are often found to have low insulin levels in the brain. This has led researchers to believe that insulin is produced in the brain as well as in the pancreas, explaining why it could play such a crucial role in neuron signaling and cell growth and lifespan, according to Popsci. (more…)
Want to think sharper? Prevent your brain from shrinking? (Yeah, that happens.) Keep your brain from aging? You can’t exactly take your brain to the weight room, but you can feed this muscle a diet rich in vitamins B, D, and E, choline, and omega-3 fatty acids. That’s why making sure your diet is rich in the six foods on Oprah’s Great Brain Grocery List will not only feed your mind, but feed your body with plenty of essential nutrients.
While there’s no cure for Alzeheimer’s or dementia, often times we can do a lot to prevent these memory diseases from taking hold of our lives. New research finds that memory decline sets in as early as our mid-40s, according to O Magazine.
Click through to see which foods you need to start tossing in your cart.
Grow Some Fresh Brain Cells and Ward Off Alzheimer’s with Daily Exercise
High-Fat Diets Cause Brain Inflammation
Dr. Oz’s 2-Day Detox Diet in PEOPLE is More Proof He’s Sold Out
Not only can exercise improve your health, but an increasing body of research is finding that exercise benefits your memory. The advantages may be as diverse as reducing the risk of cancer, spurring the growth of new brain cells, and preventing Alzheimer’s.
In a study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in 2007, researchers found an improvement in participants’ blood flow to a memory-related brain area as well as increased scores on memory tests after a three-month-long workout program.
Another study, conducted at Cambridge University in 2010, showed that running stimulates the brain to grow new cells in the hippocampus, a part of the brain associated with memory. Mice were given rewards of sugar if they nudged a square to their left, and nothing if they nudged a square on their right. One group then had access to running wheels, and after their exercise they outperformed sedentary mice’s ability to pick the right square by nearly fifty percent. Tissue samples also showed that they had hundreds of thousands of new brain cells. (more…)
Superfoods afford us many health benefits, including healthy hair, glowing skin and potentially even weight loss. But scientists now believe that they may also help fight memory decline – namely berries.
A study that was published in the Annals of Neurology, looked at more than 160,000 women over the age of 70. The women who consumed the most berries per week were found to have up to a 2.5-year advantage in showing signs of memory loss.
Beginning in 1980, the participants were surveyed about their diet every four years, also having their memory tested every two years between 1995 and 2001. Researchers found that the women who ate at least one half cup of blueberries per week, or one cup of strawberries, showed the greatest benefits.
Berries are thought to have such restorative powers as fighting free radicals throughout the body, including ones found in the brain that cause Alzheimer’s disease. It’s namely the flavanoids found in berries that act as antioxidants and combat the damage fee radicals do to our body.
The study’s lead author, Elizabeth Devore – a researcher at the Channing Laboratory at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston – also pointed out that these results apply to men as well, since there’s no reason to think berries affect males any differently than females. (more…)
By Steven V. Joyal, MD, VP of Medical & Scientific Affairs at Life Extension.
Spices add delicious flavors and tantalizing aromas to food, but many people don’t realize that spices offer a variety of beneficial, potentially lifesaving, health benefits. Consider your spice rack as a kind of natural medicine cabinet, and unleash amazing health benefits while you spice up your life with the following five spices!
Cinnamon: Derived from the bark of the tree bearing the same name, cinnamon is high in antioxidant activity. Clinical studies show beneficial changes in blood sugar control in patients with type 2 diabetes dosed with cinnamon spice from one to three grams daily. Experimental research suggests that cinnamon may reduce the likelihood that cells in the colon undergo cancerous changes. Essential oils of cinnamon have antimicrobial activity, too, and this helps provide a scientific basis for cinnamon’s traditional use as a natural treatment for diarrhea.
Michael Gonzalez-Wallace is the author of Super Body, Super Brain. You can read more from him at www.superbodysuperbrain.com or pick up his book Super Body, Super Brain.
Who doesn’t want to get smarter? Who wants to look better or be healthier? Many recent studies have shown how specific nutrients have positive effects on the brain especially in those areas of the brain related to cognitive processing or feelings and emotions. Generally speaking, you want to follow a healthy diet for your brain that will lead to good blood flow, help maintain mental sharpness and reduce the risk of heart disease and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia.
We know how foods play a great role in our brain. This is the conclusion of several studies led by a phenomenal neuroscientist at UCLA, Gomez Pinilla.
According to one study, the super fats your brain needs most are Omega 3 fatty acids. Your brain converts them into DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) which enhances neuronal communication and promotes neuronal growth.
By Jessie Gorges
Alzheimer’s patients, to put it delicately, can be difficult. Take Margaret Nance. The 96-year-old, stricken with Alzheimer’s, would often hit staff members and refuse to eat at her previous nursing home. That was until she moved to Beatitudes nursing home, located in Arizona.
Patients are given whatever they want at this non-traditional nursing home. Whether it be a candy bar or a cocktail before bed, “whatever your vice is, we’re your folks,” said Tena Alonzo, director of research at Beatitudes.
No doubt, this nursing home is unlike any other. Giving into the patients’ wishes is not a common procedure at other homes.
“The state tried to cite us for having chocolate on the nursing chart,” Alonzo said. “They were like, ‘It’s not a medication.’ Yes, it is. It’s better than Xanax.”
Dancing is a great way to let loose and work up a sweat, but for a group of senior citizens, hip hop dance is their way of staying young and healthy.
I have no doubt that some of you are skeptical. Leslie Alison, coach and choreographer, says her elderly students master all the same choreography as people half their age. She takes a lot more time with her elderly classes to provide them with more opportunity to learn and, of course, ensure that no one gets hurt. (more…)