Image Credit: Ben White / Unsplash. This image has been modified.

How to Treat Fainting

Syncope, otherwise known as fainting, is the sudden, brief loss of consciousness caused by diminished blood flow to our brain. About one in five people experience this at least once, and about one in ten may have repeated episodes of syncope, causing millions of emergency room visits and hospitalizations. Though fainting can be caused by heart problems, it is most often triggered simply by vasovagal reactions, such as standing (because blood pools in our legs) or strong emotions. “Under certain circumstances, such as blood donation, syncope has important medical and societal significance” as fainting may, for example, prevent donors from wanting to give blood again. Indeed, more than 150,000 people experience fainting or near-fainting spells each year when they donate blood.

Speaking of the medical and societal significance, what about fainting while driving? It goes without saying that losing consciousness while driving can pose a serious threat to both the patient and society. Of a group of individuals getting tested for syncope, 9 percent reported they had lost consciousness while driving.

When syncope happens repeatedly, drugs and surgery are used, such as installing a pacemaker. But such “therapy is expensive, efficacy is questionable, and adverse effects are common.” In fact, “results of most drug treatment trials have been disappointing” and the “value of implanting pacemakers has been repeatedly questioned, and now there is evidence of their lack of effectiveness.” So, what do we do?

According to one study, “In Italy, the older generation of general practitioners advised patients prone to fainting to carry a wooden egg (used in the old days for darning socks) and to apply muscle tension by gripping the wooden egg forcefully as soon as a faint was imminent.” These folklore stories inspired an Italian cardiologist to apply arm muscle tensing to combat vasovagal fainting, but it had not been put to the test until recently. 

About a minute before losing consciousness, most people about to faint experience so-called prodromal symptoms—that is, they feel dizzy, queasy, or break out into a sweat, signaling they are just about to blackout. When that happens, there are a number of maneuvers shown to successfully abort the impending episode. One is called isometric arm counter-pressure, where you grip one hand in the other and exert pressure, trying to pull apart your arms, and continuing to do so until the symptoms go away. How successful is it? Patients were shown how to do it and reported it was successful 99 percent of the time. Safe and effective, isometric arm counter-pressure is proposed to be the new first-line treatment for those who start to feel faint. You can see a picture of this move in my video How to Prevent Fainting.

Leg crossing and muscle tensing have also been shown to work. You cross your legs and squeeze them together as you tense your leg, stomach, and butt muscles. Safe, inexpensive, and effective, no wonder researchers propose having patients try this before having a cardiac pacemaker surgically implanted. Squatting is another maneuver if all else fails.

Is there anything we can do to prevent the symptoms in the first place? Do we have to wait until we’re dizzy, clammy, and nauseated? Well, also cheap, safe, and effective, simply drinking water can prevent fainting. If you know that needles, for example, make you woozy, five minutes before you get stuck, chug down two cups of water, which can dramatically stabilize blood pressures within minutes in people who are predisposed to fainting, and it has similar effects in normal healthy adults.

“The fact that acute ingestion of water exerts such profound effects may be exploited” by blood donation programs to help prevent people from fainting. It is also the current recommended treatment for so-called blood, injury, or injection phobia, which is actually pretty common, affecting about 1 in 25 people, 75 percent of whom “report a history of fainting in response” to needle sticks. The problem is not just that they won’t donate blood. Avoiding anything related to blood, injury, and injections could pose a particularly serious threat if people neglect to seek medical care when necessary. However, all one may need to do is preload with two cups of water. “The knowledge that such simple self-help maneuvers are readily available and could be lifesaving should prove valuable and helpful in everyday life.”

Quench your curiosity about proper hydration with these videos:

In health,

Michael Greger, M.D.

PS: If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my free videos here and watch my live, year-in-review presentations:


Michael Greger M.D., FACLM

Michael Greger, M.D. FACLM, is a physician, New York Times bestselling author, and internationally recognized professional speaker on a number of important public health issues. Dr. Greger has lectured at the Conference on World Affairs, the National Institutes of Health, and the International Bird Flu Summit, testified before Congress, appeared on The Dr. Oz Show and The Colbert Report, and was invited as an expert witness in defense of Oprah Winfrey at the infamous "meat defamation" trial.

63 responses to “How to Treat Fainting

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  1. My husband had repeated syncope episodes. Five minutes into a visit with a cardiologist, the doctor took one look at his leg and said it was most likely due to a varicose vein leaking. A trip to a vein doctor confirmed there was a leak. He fixed it and my husband has not fainted again since!

  2. I’m one of those fainting types. Drinking water works but sometimes there may not be any water available, which is how I discovered singing also works, especially if driving turn up the radio and belt it out -fainting aborted.

  3. Syncope and presyncope can also be responses to food and other environmental triggers in people with mast cell activation disorders. I had presyncope episodes frequentlt until I eliminated all traces of gluten from my diet.

    1. I had syncope when I was a young person whenever I ate green grapes. Turned out there is a chemical when packing them to elongate them, if you don’t buy organic. I had the same thing with salad bars, which used MSG.

      I also had it if I waited too long between meals and with certain scents. I passed out at Yellowstone Park with the sulfur smell and not eating lunch combo.

      I also fainted from eye issues. I had surgery for alternating exotropia and remember passing out the first eye doctor appointment after the surgery and for a long time after, I had such double vision from my eyes not focusing together that I would pass out. Mostly, I remember that the eye doctor panicked and was using the ammonia smelling salts and I was used to my family not doing anything at all.

      They used to take me to the doctor when I was young and they would say, “She has slightly low blood pressure” but that was all they ever said, so I stopped wanting to go to hear the same sentence over and over again.

      My brother, would tell my friends, “If she passes out, move her legs and step over her” and would laugh.

      I haven’t fainted since, one Esther fast I did years ago. The last time I will ever do an Esther fast.

      Hit my head on the concrete praying for the country in DC.

      1. Wow, Deb, that sounds awful, and your family and healthcare providers certainly don’t sound like they were very understanding helpful. I’ve had low blood pressure at every doctor visit I can remember, and they’ve never indicated that it was a sign of anything to be concerned about. But now I know it is one of the many symptoms of mast cell activation disorders. It certainly sounds like you have some form of MCAD. Have you been tested for that, and what have you been doing differently to avoid syncope? By the way, I never knew that about commercially-grown green grapes. Frankenfood!

        1. Thanks Rebecca. I will look up MCAD.

          I laugh, yes, Frankenfood is the right name for it.

          I don’t know if they still do it.

          I found out by having someone else who also fainted from green grapes tell me.

          As far as what I have done differently, I am no longer skipping meals and I am eating 97% WFPB. Went organic. Started drinking water, which I had never done in my entire life, because I hated the taste of our water. Got rid of all of the scent based stuff like cleaning supplies and air fresheners.

          Not sure which thing worked. I just know I stopped fainting.

  4. People also should be aware that these symptoms could be a side effect of some medications (i.e., blood pressure meds). I used to be on clonidine as a child and I had near-fainting episodes frequently.

  5. Recently, our otherwise healthy 26-year-old son had two fainting episodes within 10 days. After the first fainting episode, I researched the Internet and found that fainting is fairly common. So, we decided to wait and see how he did. Then, he had a second fainting episode. His friends took him to the emergency room. He was diagnosed with viral myocarditis. He died two days later of atrial fibrillation. After he died, I went to the Internet regarding fainting and there I found buried in the info a directive to seek diagnosis if cause is unknown.

    1. Oh Sharon, I am so sorry to hear that. My heart goes out to you.

      I am trying to write sentences with words, but the heart has no words.

  6. I haven’t fainted but I have arrhythmia from an AV Block and do get lightheaded and short of breath when I’m exercising and my Dr inquires if I have fainted. I wish Dr. Greger would talk about this issue but I haven’t found it anywhere on this website. My conservative cardiologist is willing to implant a pacemaker but thinks it may resolve on it’s own and I won’t need one. I’m 76, a vegan, with no other risk factors. I would like to hear from anyone who has had this problem and the pros and cons of a pacemaker. My concern is that it is a powerful electromagnetic device which is always on.

    1. It’s always wise to ask your doctor for references to any literature pertaining to the pacemaker, especially as to whether or not it contributes to longer life or fewer fainting episodes. Even your doctor may not necessarily understand the full implications of a proposed therapy.

      Medical devices implanted inside people don’t require FDA approval (not that FDA approval would be trustworthy), so the buyer must beware. It seems the manufacturer pretty much does their own research and reports it to the FDA. I don’t think this takes long-term testing.

    2. It is a difficult decision. I’m generally a less is more person, but heart blocks can be serious business. If your heart block causes a long enough pause you will pass out (or worse). You could lose consciousness driving, or sustain serious injury from a traumatic fall. In this regard pacemakers are life saving and if you need one, well, you need one, regardless of the electromagnetism. Obviously there are benign heart blocks that people live with for years and they don’t need pacers. However, if you are symptomatic from it, then that means your heart isn’t pumping enough to adequately perfuse vital organs, and that doesn’t sound all that benign. Also, outside of electrolyte disturbances or illness, heart blocks in otherwise healthy people generally don’t just go away. They stay the same or get worse. Another aspect to consider is that sometimes it can be difficult to ascertain what exactly is causing the symptoms; other things can cause lightheadedness and SOB with exercise. Your symptoms may have nothing to do with your AV block. Holter monitoring or newer implantable loop recorders can be helpful in figuring it out.

  7. Thank you so much for this. I believe I have only fainted once but I certainly feel like I have come very close rather often. Getting up too quickly, sitting long periods, etc. There have been a few very scary times – such a simple measure to avoid any issues. Always so practical.

  8. Did I misinterpret the video and study? The vid says clasping then pulling hands apart works. The study says squatting and crossing legs works but the hand pull didn’t.

    1. I see your confusion and as often with research it arises from looking at two different studies with conflicting results.The first study Dr. Greger cited seems to indicate that handgrip isn’t very successful in treating fainting: Usefulness of physical maneuvers for prevention of vasovagal syncope
      (“Squatting and leg-crossing aborted syncope in 7 of 8 patients, but handgrip aborted syncope in only 1 patient”)
      The second study cited demonstrated much more effectiveness of the hand grip: (“CONCLUSIONS: Isometric arm contraction is able to abort impending vasovagal syncope by increasing systemic BP. Arm counter-pressure maneuvers can be proposed as a new, feasible, safe, and well accepted first-line treatment for vasovagal syncope.”)
      Both approaches, arm contraction and squatting demonstrated positive affect, but the first study it was very weak. However the design of the 2nd study appears fairly well designed and one could argue that citing these results is appropriate. It’s your call, but that’s what this site is all about- looking at the research and determining based on actual studies what is true. Hope that helps and glad you’re reading so carefully!

  9. Other than if driving a car, the medical danger from fainting is injury from falling. I think the first line of defense is to make oneself safe, that is, sit or lie down as soon as one feels lightheadedness coming on. After which you can try tensing muscles.

    1. Yes, I have had head injuries from falling. Hit my head on concrete 3 times. Bath tub once. Refrigerator once. Restaurant furniture a few times.

      It was decades ago, long before concussions became such an important topic.

      I have been looking at a product called, “Brain Gauge” which is for measuring things like concussions.
      I was fascinated, because they said there are visual illusions, which if you have a concussion, you don’t get “fooled” by, so if you get the answers right, you might have brain damage.

      I might get one someday, because I have had brain problems, which are getting better and that might be able to track the improvement, but first I have to finish my kitchen.

      I just like gadgets, but if I had a football playing youth, I would have one of those.

      1. Has anything helped with the concussion side-effects, and fixing any damage done?
        I had lots of concussions due to sports in youth years, and falling on concrete. Definitely
        a concern as I get older. Thanks.

        1. In my case, upping the nutrition, getting enough B12 and Omega 3 did improve things.

          NT Factor in high enough doses for 3 months seemed to help.

          I noticed a difference with it, but I was also mega-dosing nutrition and back then I was taking things like Melatonin.

          When I was researching brain plasticity and stroke recovery, I found that things like increasing BDNF through exercise can help.

          Look at the brain plasticity studies, because any function we have lost in our brains, theoretically can come back through neurogenesis. So it is eating to increase neurogenesis and exercising to increase neurogenesis and OCD levels of daily repetition of what you are trying to get back to increase neurogenesis combined with stimulating the nerves to the brain with things like acupuncture, cold laser, TMS, Ultrasound, Direct Current, etc.

          I watched a video of new baby neurons in the part of the brain where there had been a stroke after using TMS therapy for a few months, combined with rehab of the functions people were trying to regain and I read a paper of ultrasound and direct current accomplishing the same thing and saw a center, which uses cold laser and read about acupuncture on PubMed.

          Aerobic exercise increasing BDNF is also on PubMed. They had people do aerobic exercise before or after PT and both increased neurogenesis through different mechanisms.

          They can get people who are quadriplegics to slowly be able to move their arms and legs again through neurogenesis and they have developed a drug for Parkinson’s to do the whole neurogenesis angiogenesis process, because one theory is that Parkinson’s is brain damage, similar to a stroke, but in a specific part of the brain and the percentage of damage is different.

          Either way, they can outwit it through Brain Plasticity.

          My understanding is limited to Ted Talks and documentaries like “The Brain That Changes Itself” but I did also look to see what they were doing at brain plasticity centers, but that is still mostly research.

          There are a few brain plasticity centers scattered around, but they aren’t covered by insurance, but my intuitive process is that if they can fix the damage from a stroke, they should be able to fix the damage from a concussion, but it takes a lot of repetition no matter what.

          It is stimulate the nerves to the brain and give yourself permission to be OCD for at least two months. (That is what one site said is the minimum time it takes to create a neuronal pathway, but you don’t just want a neuronal pathway, you want as much of your brain as possible to be involved in the function, so while you are learning, go ahead and play music and visualize and use essential oil scents and things like that to have more of your brain involved.)

          PubMed said that visualizing helps.

          Sleep is one of the most important things, because whatever you focus on all day needs to be rewritten in your brain over and over and over again.

          That is the part I am not doing well on right now, but I used to take Melatonin and I think I might need to go back to that.

          Things I remember from the Ted Talk

          Sunlight, Vitamin D, Bright light therapy in Winter
          Don’t drink Coffee, or drink alcohol and limit caffeine
          You want foods rich in things like Resveratrol, quercetin, etc.
          All the nutrition you can get to heal your mitochondria
          Turmeric and Cacao and blueberries are some of the things they tested.

          Honestly, I used the Paleo ladies testimony to help with the mitochondria foods, but didn’t use her meat logic and don’t believe the whole legend of mankind thing.

          I have gotten away from almost all of my supplements, except B12, Omega 3 and D3, all of which you need, but you need enough B3, and Magnesium and Selenium and Iodine, too, though food for those.

          I am thinking about going back on CoQ10 and Melatonin and NT Factor. I think they were helping.

          1. When I say that you “need” B3, B12, Omega 3 and D3, Magnesium I mean that there are studies for those things for brain health.

            It has been over a year since I started looking it up, so forgive me if I have to say, “Do your own homework, in case my broken mind is forgetting something.”

            1. I left out hyperbaric oxygen, because that one seemed risky to me, but people were having good results with it.

              It just reminded me of the “side effects” list on a medicine package.

              1. The visualizing is the thing you might skip and I should have added in meditation, but with stroke recovery, they did studies that people improved faster with visualization and they did a study where one group visualized and one group did rehab and that visualization group had a big gain. I can’t remember how much, but the whole point is that it is your brain that is broken and visualizing and sleeping are places where you can tell your brain what to assign your neurons to based on what you are trying to get back.

                I am not going to give you the hundreds of PubMed things I read, but I will give you this from Flint Rehab, which is one of the places, which talks about how many repetitions it takes for a stroke recovery patient to get function back, based on the brain being what needs to get new neurons.

                I liked alternating between the scientific articles and places like this, which are using it.


                1. I would suggest writing down the things you lost with the concussion and having clear goals and approach it as if you had a stroke, because there are a lot more resources for approaching stroke recovery through brain plasticity than there are for concussion.

                  I bought a Micropulse ICES, because I was looking for things to stimulate nerves to the brain, and I couldn’t figure out Direct Currents that well and the NASA guy who invented it said that it was more powerful than Current and I couldn’t afford TMS.

                  He has a Brain Gauge, too, but I was spending so much on organic foods and supplements that I didn’t get that.

                  Eat organic and get rid of the aluminum toiletries are a few of the main things with brain issues.

                  Dr. Greger has a RoundUp video. It causes glutamate toxicity in the brain and some people believe it messes with the gut. Also watch MSG and things like that. Avoid foods, which have ingredients, which look like chemicals.

                  If you aren’t fully vegan, watch out for cheeses with aluminum.

                  1. I forgot, you can probably go to a chiropractor to do the whole stimulate the nerves to the brain part.

                    If you are a self-hacker, you should read PubMed articles about TMS and which nerves they used and things like that.

                    I say it, because I am a self-hacker, but I am aware that I read every PubMed article I could before I did anything and the logic for which nerve to the brain and which type of device to use and where to put the electrodes has some tricky things in it.

                    There are risks and I know that the self-hacking community most of them have already spent a small fortune at doctors and didn’t get their brains back before playing with gadgets.

                    But there genuinely are things you have to know.

                    The researchers found out things by experimenting and sometimes stimulating a nerve on the left side of the brain had an opposite effect to stimulating the nerves on the right side of the brain, etc.

                    I am a committed self-hacker and I know I may make a lot of mistakes, but have been progressively getting better, but brains and eyes are tricky things.

                    I bought a vie light, a cold laser, the micropulse ices, a blinking gamma light, I added in the gamma sound waves, not really based on research, but because the light might not reach the whole brain. I bought infrared bulbs and I am still working on healing my thyroid naturally, because thyroid is important for brain healing, too. I dealt with the toxins in my house and still ponder structured water, and am trying essential oils, because my friend is selling them and I haven’t tried lemon balm and I haven’t tried saffron yet, but the thing I decided watching the Parkinson’s video by the drug company, is that they think all of these brain conditions are injuries to the brain, possibly from not having enough blood flow to the brain, so using things, which increase blood flow to the brain and using things, which help Alzheimer’s and stroke and Parkinson’s seemed like the way to go for me.

                    I am not sure how to underline that and put enough exclamation points on that there are risks to self-treating and that I am a self-hacker and you have to make your own decisions about everything.

            2. Start with going to YouTube and watching the documentary “The Brain That Vhanges Itself”

              Then go to TED Talks on YouTube and watch Brain Plasticity and neurogenesis and things like that.

              Also watch Dr Barnard on Alzheimer’s, because you need to not get confused by the high fats doctors.

              1. Also I mentioned gadgets which either stimulate the nerves to the brain or increase the blood flow to the brain, but if you go to stroke studies, you will see more and there are cheaper hacks of everything if you are poor.

                For instance, there is a cheap sinus version of the vie light for $25 which is a similar wavelength and there are infrared lights for $7.

          2. Deb,

            That was excellent. Thanks so much for taking the time to write. Say as much as you want, I’ll read it all!

            I am curious, what paleo foods do you eat? Do you use dairy or eggs? Is there a link for the paleo video of the woman whose diet you mentioned you followed.

            I would like to be paleo but i have bad reactions to fish and shellfish, as well as eggs and dairy. Poultry does nothing for my energy, Neither does red meat.

            Any suggestions based on that appreciated.

            Interesting.y, I fasted once or twice and got good energy, as well as increased clarity.

            I find that sunshine, ocean swimming in warm ocean water, seem to help me a bit with energy and mood.

            Stress and anxiety are a huge difficulty for me. Hard to manage. They seem to produce depression. Not fun.

            Can I ask, what form of B12 you take?

            I am experimenting with apple cider vinegar right now. I don’t know.


        2. Sorry if I wrote a book.

          My mind is improving, but I still have problems processing things like I shouldn’t share every single thing.

          Mostly, don’t give up.


          At a basic level are all just brain injuries.

          The Parkinsons video said that stroke had a higher percentage of damage than Parkinson’s.

          They said that stroke was 80% damage and Parkinsons was 50% or something like that.

          Concussion is a genuine issue, but if they can reverse strokes and Parkinson’s and help Alzheimer’s at all, concussion is easier than those.

          There is a chiropractor from Boston on Youtube who had a stroke where he was paralyzed and couldn’t see properly or eat properly and couldn’t talk and he did brain plasticity and was back in practice 4 years later. I think he was driving after 2 years.

          So who are we to settle for less than that if it is just walking out a process with hyper nutrition and diligence.

        3. Hi Nan- If you are still currently an athlete, you may find this information helpful: If you are trying to maintain optimal brain health post-injury and not currently an athlete, many of the same concepts of nutrient dense foods with plant based omega 3’s (flax, walnuts) will likely be your best defense against sequela of prior injury. I do not have any particular studies to point you to regarding concussions but I will bring this question to the health support team.

          1. kristi,

            thank you. i am allergic to flax and walnuts, chia, hemp, things like that.
            and the vegan DHA pills thin my blood too much, noticeable, even when taking in small dosage. darn! kind of left wondering if some animal foods in moderation might be necessary, all this considered. any more suggestions i welcome.
            thank you again.

  10. I’m a fainter when I get ill, which is super rare….. OR, get this.. if I hit my funny bone..NOTHING funny about a face plant in a grocery store.

    The other night, my first cold in 6 years and for up in the night and KNEW to just crawl as I felt queasy … then I just lay in the cool, tile floor. This new advice is fabulous for me A set of squats while singing a song and I’m good to go. :-)

  11. Coincidence or not ?
    Sometimes I feel queasy or nauseous and if I play my saxophone most times it stops ….. Your using a lot of muscles when playing a saxophone and putting them under a lot of stress , especially abdominal .

    1. I must add to my post that the problem is if your feeling a bit queasy is that your not exactly in the best frame of mind to do something physical or blow your horn (saxophone) , so you have to dig in .

  12. The article states “. . . it is most often triggered simply by vasovagal reactions, such as standing (because blood pools in our legs) or . . .”

    Does this mean people who make a living working in front of keyboards and screens shouldn’t be using standup desks and instead stick to the seated desk environment experience?

      1. @Deb I think its feasible to use standup desk + treadmill combination if you are participating in conference calls, reading or doing light keyboard/mouse interaction. For anything where you are highly engaged in keyboard/mouse interactions I would think the constant bobbing up and down from walking on treadmill would make for a pretty inefficient and frustrating experience.

    1. No need to get back to sitting all of the time! Just try to include some movement in your arms or legs periodically during your standing day. A few high knees or standing wall pushups every hour or two will keep the blood circulating. If you find that you develop swelling or discomfort in your lower legs, compression stockings can help as well.

  13. I have been a “fainter” since I was a very young child, maybe as early as 4 or 5. Every time I went to the doctor’s office to get an injection, I passed out. It was all about the needles. Even if I saw someone else get a shot, I fainted. Recently, I read an article similar to this one above that suggested squeezing a tennis ball. So now when I go to the doc, I have a tennis ball in my purse! When I’ve had to get a shot, I pulled out my tennis ball and squeezed! It WORKS!

    1. That is cool, Trena!

      My mother used to be so good at distracting us while the doctor was preparing for the shots.

      She would ask us questions, which took a thought process half a second before the shot to just change our focus.

      That worked.

  14. I used to feel faint, but only when having blood drawn. I have had so many blood draws in my later years that I have gotten used to it and no longer feel faint. But I have fallen several times because my legs literally quit working. It is always quite sudden. I have no warning at all. My hands and arms also become weaker. My neurologist tells me that it is related to low blood pressure affecting parts of my brain that control my extremities. I have to be on diuretics and other heart medications that lower my blood pressure. Drinking more water seems to help, but is no guarantee. I have never hit my head, but the day may come when I do. I use a walker mostly in the hope that I will be able to break my fall if I fall. Getting old ain’t for sissies………..

    1. I looked up natural ways to increase blood pressure and articles talked about things like

      Crossing the legs while sitting increases blood pressure – which may be a variation of what Dr. Greger just talked about to avoid fainting.

      They also said things like eat smaller meals and eat more frequently and watch for nutritional deficiencies and allergies.

      Don’t change positions too rapidly. Don’t stay in one position too long, particularly while standing.

      Don’t lift heavy objects.

      Don’t stay in too hot of baths or showers or whirlpools for too long.

      It is interesting that so many of us had it happen from low blood pressure.

  15. This video could be featured in doctors’ waiting rooms or emergency rooms where patients and their families are waiting for their appointments. It would also be a practical addition to the training for nursing students as well as Emergency Medical Technologists (EMT’s). Great information!

  16. I have POTS and have fainted more times than I can count, resulting in dozens of er trips. All they say is “how are you conscious with blood pressure this low?”
    The answer was a vegan diet, increasing my salt and water intake, and weight lifting.
    I went from fainting at least once a week to not fainting in 2+ years

  17. I looked up to see if there was a link between low blood pressure and Alzheimer’s and there is one.

    The brain is one of those issues where the famous doctor science goes all over the place.

    Having the London study where vegans die of Alzheimer’s and trying to integrate understanding of that with Dr. Barnard’s studies and Dr. Amen’s brain scans and MIT’s gamma pulsed light turning on the microglia and something else, which talked about wanting the microglia not to be activated….

    Yes, it is one of those logic loop topics with all sorts of opposing theories.

    As opposing as possible, but I have chosen to believe the WFPB studies and testimonies versus their studies and testimonies, but I caught a few of Dr. Amen’s testimonies and they are healing brains, too, and I have to not choose a belief system about it until I understand why one side eats way more fat and it gets healthier and one side cuts out fat and they have five times fewer Alzheimer’s cases and that side is the blood flow to the brain theory.

    Nights are hard for me and it has been harder, because people like my house contractor and vet both have cancer and other people have strokes and my precious auto garage owner died of a heart attack and my uncle has dementia, but his only living child has cancer and I am watching grandparents and parents and adult children die.

    I went to one funeral of a relative’s wife and what struck me was that there were no older adults in the receiving line, just twenty something year olds. They did an after funeral gathering and where there used to be a big spread of food at events, they had a box of coffee and some donuts.

    Have any of the rest of you gotten to the age where it gets very real, yet?

    Most of my friends and family going keto and I might have gone there trying to get the fats into my brain, but I threw up the coconut oil and don’t like fats. It feels like a, but for the grace of God go I moment in my life and having brain problems at night and not sleeping makes me vulnerable and so does the SAD reality.

  18. Tonight, I was trying to learn about yeast histone deacetylases, because of the MIT research with inhibiting HDAC2 enzymes to reverse Alzheimer’s in mice. Yes, I don’t understand a single sentence, except “yeast” is that saying something fungal is happening or something like that? Can I lower my yeast levels maybe as a way to try out what they are trying to do? (Laughing, I already bought a $40 pulsing gamma LED light for one of my self-test studies, but I look at this and they might as well be speaking Klingon. I am honestly in awe of what doctors learn. Genuinely respect it.)

    “Based on their homology of accessory domains to yeast histone deacetylases, the 18 currently known human histone deacetylases are classified into four groups (I-IV):[11]

    Class I, which includes HDAC1, -2, -3 and -8 are related to yeast RPD3 gene;”

    Okay, I learned the letters of the enzymes and, so far, I can put the word “yeast” next to it and histone sounds like histamine.

    Yes, this might take another year, but that is okay.

    1. Laughing, on a whim, I Googled antihistamine and Alzheimer’s and there are theories about that.

      I had so many allergies that I took so many antihistamines over the years.

      When I was looking at the Radical Remission for Cancer book list of six things the people had and intuition was one of the things on the list and in one night, I found: Melatonin, Blood Pressure and Antihistamine, without understanding anything.

      1. The histamine and Alzheimer’s links led to NSAIDS and CorticoSteroids, then trying to figure it out naturally, I ended up at glutathione and read this:

        Boosting glutathione (GSH) can be accomplished by increasing dietary intake of cysteine and the GSH co-factors. Over 78,000 clinical research papers on glutathione/GSH have been published since the 1980s and they reveal that people who suffer from systemic inflammation and chronic degenerative diseases like cancer, Alzheimers, MS, Parkinsons, and the other diseases listed earlier all have one thing in common — low levels of glutathione/GSH in their body.

        Okay, NOW, I ask if I am low in glutathione, am I not as safe with the cyano prefix of B-12?

        1. When I was taking NT Factor, my B12 was 100 mcg of cyano per day.

          The NT Factor helped my brain, but I am still wondering if I make enough glutathione for that high level of cyano prefix B12.

          I remember reading studies where supplements sometimes had so much more product than on the label, and it just made me ponder.

          I don’t feel 100% confident of your B12 recommendation, because you went into just wing it mode at the point of decision.

          To me, if you have pernicious anemia, you need injections.

          If you have conditions, which are low in glutathione, maybe cyano might be a yellow flashing light supplement? Probably okay, but they might put too much of it in on top of it and if you have leaky gut on top of it, maybe a solid yellow light supplement?

          Yes, I know I don’t actually know anything, but I am trying to do the Jeopardy process of putting things in the form of a question.

          No matter what there is more evidence of damage from homocysteine and vegans in London got Alzheimer’s so take B12.

          That is my internal dialogue process right now.

          1. Honestly, there was cyano in more than one of the supplements I was taking back then and I also was wondering which form is in Nutritional Yeast and fortified cereals.

            Is it really just a non-issue?

  19. My relative who died of Alzheimer’s recently was married to an MIT grad and was at the best hospitals. I am not seeing meds work for dementia or Alzheimer’s yet. So far, dementia and Alzheimer’s meds made everybody worse. Took my grandmother off her dementia meds, because they made her more confused and agitated. Glad I did, because she was peaceful and happy and alert and laughing until the day she died, if confused.

    Rooting for Dr. Barnard.

    I bought Gerson’s cook book and re-bought How Not to Die cook book, time to try to increase variety.

  20. It is almost three in the morning. Still can’t sleep.

    Caused me to look up Melatonin and Alzheimer’s and Cancer and there are people with that theory.

    Wondering if Melatonin is something, which can be supplemented effectively?

  21. I have recently had 2 episodes of syncope, most likely heart related. I am also gluten free. I do get migraines but are treated well by ginger. My heart and arteries are in very good condition. Is there any diet, supplement, vitamin, etc that can help reduce the threat of syncope. I am a 60 year old male, ekg is normal as was a 30 day event monitor.
    thank you

  22. Hi Antonio,

    I am a volunteer with Dr. Greger. Thank you so much for your question.

    I’m not sure if there are specific recommendations reported for heart-related syncope specifically. However, some general advice can be given to anybody suffering from syncope, including ensuring adequate fluid intake, balance of electrolytes (making sure to eat fruits and/or vegetables will help) before exercise, and possibly to include a source of caffeine such as coffee or preferably, tea. Caffeine causes a slight elevation of blood pressure, which may counter some of the blood pressure lowering symptoms seen in syncope. Drinking about 2 cups of water will also cause an acute (short-term) rise in blood pressure.

    It may also help to consume a diet rich in whole, plant-foods, as these foods are less likely to cause a spike in your blood sugar, followed by a drastic drop in blood sugar, leaving one at an even higher risk of fainting. The paper I found also recommends foods high in fiber and potassium, which would also be whole plant foods, especially fruits, vegetables, and beans/lentils.

    Here is the link to the advice provided by 2 respected professionals on the topic:

    I hope this helps answer your question, and best wishes!

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