Flashback Friday: Preventing Alzheimer’s with Lifestyle Changes and Diet

Flashback Friday: Preventing Alzheimer’s with Lifestyle Changes and Diet
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Lifestyle changes could potentially prevent hundreds of thousands of cases of Alzheimer’s disease every year in the United States. And the role of the Mediterranean diet in preventing and treating dementia.

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It is safe to say that Alzheimer’s disease research is in a state of crisis. For the past two decades, over 73,000 research articles have been published, yet little clinical progress has been made. The reason a cure may be impossible is because lost cognitive functions in Alzheimer’s disease patients are due to fatally damaged neuronal networks, and dead nerve cells cannot be brought back to life. Consequently, replacement with new brain cells—even if it were technically possible, cannot be done without creating a new personal identity. They may live, but is it really a cure if their personality is lost forever?

Developing drugs that try to clear out the plaques from advanced degenerated brain tissue makes about as much sense as bulldozing tombstones from graveyards in an attempt to raise the dead. Even if drug companies figured out how to stop further disease progression, many Alzheimer victims might not choose to live without recognizing family, friends, or themselves in a mirror.

Thus, prevention of Alzheimer’s may be the key. Just as a heart attack or brain attack (stroke) can be significantly prevented, one can think of Alzheimer’s dementia as a ‘‘mind attack.” Mind attack, like heart attacks or strokes, needs to be prevented by controlling of vascular risk factors like high blood pressure and cholesterol, controlling that chronic brain hypoperfusion, the lack of adequate blood flow to the brain over the years before the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, which means a healthy diet, physical exercise, and mental exercise.

Here’s the potential number of Alzheimer’s cases that could be prevented every year in the United States if we could just reduce diabetes rates 10%, 25%, because diabetes is a risk factor for Alzheimer’s. And so is high blood pressure, depression, not exercising your body, smoking, and not exercising your brain. Altogether, a small reduction in all these risk factors could potentially prevent hundreds of thousands of devastated families.

If modifiable factors such as diet were found conclusively to modulate the risk of AD to the degree suggested by this research, then we would all indeed rejoice at the implications.

Up to half of Alzheimer’s cases may be attributable to just these 7 risk factors, and that’s not including diet, just because there are so many dietary factors that they couldn’t fit them into their model, but they acknowledged that diet might be another important modifiable risk factor for AD. In particular, there is growing evidence that dietary patterns, such as the Mediterranean diet, are associated with lower Azheimer’s risk, as well as slower cognitive decline, but which constituents of the Mediterranean diet are responsible?

The traditional Mediterranean diet is a diet high in intake of vegetables, beans, fruit, and nuts, and low in meat and dairy. When they tried to tease out the protective components, fish consumption showed no benefit, neither did moderate alcohol consumption. The two critical pieces appeared to be vegetable consumption, and the ratio between unsaturated fats and saturated fats, essentially plant fats to animal fats.

In studies across 11 countries, fat consumption appeared to be most closely correlated with the prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease, with the lowest fat intake and Alzheimer’s rates in China to the highest fat intake and Alzheimer’s rates in the United States. But this is grouping all fats together.

Harvard researchers examined the relationships of the major fat types to cognitive change over 4 years among 6,000 healthy older women, and found that higher saturated fat intake was associated with a poorer trajectory of cognition and memory. Women with the highest saturated fat intake had 60 to 70% greater odds of worst change on brain function. The magnitude of cognitive change associated with saturated fat consumption was equivalent to about 6 years of aging, meaning women with the lowest saturated fat intake had the brain function of women 6 years younger.

What if one already has Alzheimer’s, though? Previously, this group of Columbia University researchers reported that eating a Mediterranean-style diet was related to lower risk for Alzheimer’s disease, but whether a Mediterranean diet—or any diet for that matter—is associated with the subsequent course of the disease and outcomes had not been investigated, until now.

They found that adherence to the Mediterranean diet may affect not only risk for Alzheimer disease but also subsequent disease course: Higher adherence to the MeDi is associated with lower mortality. And the more they adhered to the healthier diet, the longer they lived. Within 5 years, only 20% of those with high adherence died, with twice as many deaths in the intermediate adherence group, and in the low diet adherence group, within 5 years, more than half were dead, and by 10 years, 90% were gone, 80% were gone, or less than half. And by the end of the study, the only people still alive were those with higher adherence to the healthier diet.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Flood G. via flickr. This image has been modified.

It is safe to say that Alzheimer’s disease research is in a state of crisis. For the past two decades, over 73,000 research articles have been published, yet little clinical progress has been made. The reason a cure may be impossible is because lost cognitive functions in Alzheimer’s disease patients are due to fatally damaged neuronal networks, and dead nerve cells cannot be brought back to life. Consequently, replacement with new brain cells—even if it were technically possible, cannot be done without creating a new personal identity. They may live, but is it really a cure if their personality is lost forever?

Developing drugs that try to clear out the plaques from advanced degenerated brain tissue makes about as much sense as bulldozing tombstones from graveyards in an attempt to raise the dead. Even if drug companies figured out how to stop further disease progression, many Alzheimer victims might not choose to live without recognizing family, friends, or themselves in a mirror.

Thus, prevention of Alzheimer’s may be the key. Just as a heart attack or brain attack (stroke) can be significantly prevented, one can think of Alzheimer’s dementia as a ‘‘mind attack.” Mind attack, like heart attacks or strokes, needs to be prevented by controlling of vascular risk factors like high blood pressure and cholesterol, controlling that chronic brain hypoperfusion, the lack of adequate blood flow to the brain over the years before the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, which means a healthy diet, physical exercise, and mental exercise.

Here’s the potential number of Alzheimer’s cases that could be prevented every year in the United States if we could just reduce diabetes rates 10%, 25%, because diabetes is a risk factor for Alzheimer’s. And so is high blood pressure, depression, not exercising your body, smoking, and not exercising your brain. Altogether, a small reduction in all these risk factors could potentially prevent hundreds of thousands of devastated families.

If modifiable factors such as diet were found conclusively to modulate the risk of AD to the degree suggested by this research, then we would all indeed rejoice at the implications.

Up to half of Alzheimer’s cases may be attributable to just these 7 risk factors, and that’s not including diet, just because there are so many dietary factors that they couldn’t fit them into their model, but they acknowledged that diet might be another important modifiable risk factor for AD. In particular, there is growing evidence that dietary patterns, such as the Mediterranean diet, are associated with lower Azheimer’s risk, as well as slower cognitive decline, but which constituents of the Mediterranean diet are responsible?

The traditional Mediterranean diet is a diet high in intake of vegetables, beans, fruit, and nuts, and low in meat and dairy. When they tried to tease out the protective components, fish consumption showed no benefit, neither did moderate alcohol consumption. The two critical pieces appeared to be vegetable consumption, and the ratio between unsaturated fats and saturated fats, essentially plant fats to animal fats.

In studies across 11 countries, fat consumption appeared to be most closely correlated with the prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease, with the lowest fat intake and Alzheimer’s rates in China to the highest fat intake and Alzheimer’s rates in the United States. But this is grouping all fats together.

Harvard researchers examined the relationships of the major fat types to cognitive change over 4 years among 6,000 healthy older women, and found that higher saturated fat intake was associated with a poorer trajectory of cognition and memory. Women with the highest saturated fat intake had 60 to 70% greater odds of worst change on brain function. The magnitude of cognitive change associated with saturated fat consumption was equivalent to about 6 years of aging, meaning women with the lowest saturated fat intake had the brain function of women 6 years younger.

What if one already has Alzheimer’s, though? Previously, this group of Columbia University researchers reported that eating a Mediterranean-style diet was related to lower risk for Alzheimer’s disease, but whether a Mediterranean diet—or any diet for that matter—is associated with the subsequent course of the disease and outcomes had not been investigated, until now.

They found that adherence to the Mediterranean diet may affect not only risk for Alzheimer disease but also subsequent disease course: Higher adherence to the MeDi is associated with lower mortality. And the more they adhered to the healthier diet, the longer they lived. Within 5 years, only 20% of those with high adherence died, with twice as many deaths in the intermediate adherence group, and in the low diet adherence group, within 5 years, more than half were dead, and by 10 years, 90% were gone, 80% were gone, or less than half. And by the end of the study, the only people still alive were those with higher adherence to the healthier diet.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Flood G. via flickr. This image has been modified.

Doctor's Note

My mom’s mom died of Alzheimer’s. It is worth preventing at all costs.

Up to half of Alzheimer’s cases may be attributable to just those 7 risk factors, and that’s not even including diet, because there were so many dietary factors that they couldn’t fit them into their model.

So far these are some of the videos I’ve done on dementia prevention and treatment:

There’s been an explosion of research on the Mediterranean diet recently, and since this video was originally published, I have a series of videos out about it:

Here’s more on dietary factors in cognitive decline:

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

 

161 responses to “Flashback Friday: Preventing Alzheimer’s with Lifestyle Changes and Diet

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  1. The broad conclusions of this video continue to be supported by recent research findings. For example, this study published a few days ago found that a healthy lifestyle greatly reduced dementia rates even in people with high genetic risk for dementia

    ‘A total of 196 383 individuals (mean [SD] age, 64.1 [2.9] years; 52.7% were women) were followed up for 1 545 433 person-years (median [interquartile range] follow-up, 8.0 [7.4-8.6] years). Overall, 68.1% of participants followed a favorable lifestyle, 23.6% followed an intermediate lifestyle, and 8.2% followed an unfavorable lifestyle. Twenty percent had high polygenic risk scores, 60% had intermediate risk scores, and 20% had low risk scores. Of the participants with high genetic risk, 1.23% (95% CI, 1.13%-1.35%) developed dementia compared with 0.63% (95% CI, 0.56%-0.71%) of the participants with low genetic risk (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.91 [95% CI, 1.64-2.23]). Of the participants with a high genetic risk and unfavorable lifestyle, 1.78% (95% CI, 1.38%-2.28%) developed dementia compared with 0.56% (95% CI, 0.48%-0.66%) of participants with low genetic risk and favorable lifestyle (hazard ratio, 2.83 [95% CI, 2.09-3.83]). There was no significant interaction between genetic risk and lifestyle factors (P = .99). Among participants with high genetic risk, 1.13% (95% CI, 1.01%-1.26%) of those with a favorable lifestyle developed dementia compared with 1.78% (95% CI, 1.38%-2.28%) with an unfavorable lifestyle (hazard ratio, 0.68 [95% CI, 0.51-0.90]).

    Conclusions and Relevance Among older adults without cognitive impairment or dementia, both an unfavorable lifestyle and high genetic risk were significantly associated with higher dementia risk. A favorable lifestyle was associated with a lower dementia risk among participants with high genetic risk.’
    +++++++++++++++++++++++
    https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2738355

  2. Coincidentally, I just commented the other day on another study on cognition in the aged that was published recently.

    “ADELAIDE, Australia — Nuts have always been viewed as a healthy snack and great source of protein, but new research suggests that a steady, hardy diet of nuts can also sustain mental sharpness and cognition as we age.

    Conducted at the University of South Australia, the study found that consuming more than 10 grams of nuts per day led to improved mental functioning and thinking, and better memory and reasoning. The study consisted of 4,822 Chinese adults aged 55 or older.”

    https://www.studyfinds.org/daily-dose-nuts-key-to-staying-sharp-in-old-age/

    https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s12603-018-1122-5

    And 10 grams of nuts isn’t that much … about 1/3 oz.

    But as Barb pointed out when I first posted this the other day, the effect may not be as pronounced, if one is already eating a WPF diet.

      1. Thanks, Tom and Hal.

        This is a topic I am obviously so interested in.

        And, Barb, Dr. Ornish’s study is the one I am really waiting for, but I do know that the Adventists is another study where nut intake is one of the things linked to their longevity and, Barb, that is even for Vegans.

        They aren’t perfectly Whole Food Plant-Based, but they are the top of the longevity standard and they have less than 5% Alzheimer’s and are surrounded by communities which are very high in Alzheimer’s.

        1. Hal, you finding a study where I can do 1/3 of an ounce of nuts, that is a game-changer for me.

          I know I have to lose weight as one risk factor and I haven’t been and I have a very short list of what might have caused me to not lose weight and nuts and avocado are on that list.

          I believe I have lost a little weight since going off of my latte and the nuts and avocado, but how much depends on what time of day I weigh myself (I am testing that because I have a huge change day to night – maybe even 8 pounds. That makes it hard to know what is weight loss and what is my normal scale swing. I am going to be trying another scale to see if it is my body which has the weight change within a day or if it is the scale.)

          What I am going to say is that the high weight is 8 pounds below where I started 2 years ago. The low weight is 8 pounds below that and that didn’t show up until this week, but after seeing it as if I lost 8 pounds, the next time I stepped on the scale, I was up 6 of those pounds and the next day I was down again and then I was up again. Such a big swing that I would almost not know if I lost anything at all, except I never get back up to the weight I was 2 years ago.

          1. Deb, That daily weight change sounds like it could be your scale. I had an inexpensive scale once and the weight reading would change depending how I stepped on it! Another factor could be your state of hydration. Maybe some days you are more hydrated than others.

          2. Hi Deb,
            Weigh yourself first thing in the morning before you eat or drink anything. That way, the daily fluctuations will be kept to a minim. Also weigh yourself in the same type of clothes each day too. If you have a fatty liver, your body will be working on that so you will see very small amounts of weight loss, but don’t worry, once the body has healed that enough, provided you are sticking to a good WFPB diet the weight will then fall off. All the best for your new slim trim and terrific figure.

            1. Thanks, Tom.

              Yes, and I agree with every sentence you have said.

              I looked at scales and many of them people said if they move the scale or stand on it with their feet in a different position, it can change by 4 pounds or so.

              Eventually though if I don’t lose weight eating salad and beans and oil free dressing something will be wrong.

              I think I have lost 2 to 3 pounds since I started supplementing the iodine and D3 again.

              It is hard that it is an 8 found swing.

              1. Hi Deb,

                You may want to have your thyroid levels checked. If your thyroid function is abnormal, this can affect your weight. Have your doctor do a full Thyroid panel.

                Another thing that seems to help with weight-loss is intermittent fasting. The goal would be eating for eight hours and then no food for 16 hours. But you can always start 12 on, 12 off and work your way up. And if you are done eating at least three hours before bedtime, your body has time to digest more efficiently.

                Best of luck,
                Fawn

      2. I’m not aware of any human studies on this although the Okinawan traditional diet, which was a WFPB diet including less than 4% of total calories from anaimal foods, was only 6% fat.

        There have been animal studies of course but not really of WFPB diets. However, they might provide a pointer since standard mice chow is high fibre (eg ‘
        ;Regular chow is composed of agricultural byproducts, such as ground wheat, corn, or oats, alfalfa and soybean meals, a protein source such as fish, and vegetable oil and is supplemented with minerals and vitamins. Thus, chow is a high fiber diet containing complex carbohydrates, with fats from a variety of vegetable sources.’
        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2394560/)

        ‘”C57BL/6J mice were fed with a HF diet (60% kcal/fat) or control diets (15% kcal/fat) for 27 months. One-half of the mice on the HF diet developed obesity (diet-induced obese (DIO) mice), whereas the remaining mice were diet resistant (DR). At 8 months of age, both DIO and DR groups had increased hyperglycemic response during a glucose tolerance test, which was normalized in 16-month-old mice. At this latter time point, all groups presented similar performance in cognitive tests (Morris water maze and inhibitory avoidance). The survival curves of the HF and control diet groups started to diverge at 15 months of age and, after 27 months, the survival rate of mice in the DIO and DR groups was 40%, whereas in the control diet group it was 75%.”
        Source:
        ‘High saturated fat and low carbohydrate diet decreases lifespan independent of body weight in mice’
        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3922950/

        There was another interesting mouse study published in 2014:
        ‘The team put mice on 25 different diets, altering the proportions of protein, carbohydrates and fat. The mice were allowed to eat as much food as they wanted to more closely replicate the food choices humans make.
        “The healthiest diets were the ones that had the lowest protein, 5 to 10 to 15 per cent protein, the highest amount of carbohydrate, so 60, 70, 75 per cent carbohydrate, and a reasonably low fat content, so less than 20 per cent,” Professor Le Couteur said.
        “They were also the diets that had the highest energy content.
        “We found that diluting the diets to reduce the energy intake actually made the animals die more quickly.”
        The mice that ate a high-carbohydrate, low-protein diet lived about 50 per cent longer than those on the low-carb diet.”
        http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-03-05/low-carb-diet-may-shorten-your-life-study-finds/5299284
        http://www.cell.com/cell-reports/fulltext/S2211-1247(15)00505-7
        http://www.cell.com/cms/attachment/2032903762/2049230860/mmc2.pdf

        I’ve not seen any studies suggesting high fat low carb diets promote healthy longevity – apart from the PURE studies of course but they essentially compare people in wealthy Western countries with people in poor countries eating poverty diets based on refined carbs who don’t have access to good quality health care or even clean water. All the keto low carb hype seems to be based on specious reasoning citing short term improvements in biomarkers in particular circumstances. However, since the guy on the Twinkie diet also improved his biomarkers on his diet, I don’t place a lot of faith in those sorts of arguments that such diets are actually healthy. I’d concede though that they are probably healthier than the SAD.

          1. Thank you Fumbles! Really interesting! Near the end of this thread I posted a link to the description of the study Dr Ornish and others are conducting on a whole food low fat diet using a control group, all meals provided. The various types of information rhey are gathering will make this a very interesting study the impact of nutrition on mild cognitive impairment.

    1. Hal, I believe that. My mother was getting bad couldn’t remember anything. She started eating almonds and mixed nuts and her memory seemed to have got a lot better. Not like it was when she was younger but great compared to how bad it had gotten.

      1. David, Glad to hear the nuts helped your mother. I do eat a variety of nuts in small amounts each day.

        In fact, Dr Greger has a video on the fact that eating a variety of foods is better than concentrating on large amounts of any single food.

        1. Yes although it’s perhaps worth remembering that 69% of the calories in the traditional Okinawan diet were provided by sweet potatoes so there’s presumably a balance here. It suggests that we can base our diet on one or two staples as long as we get sufficient variety in say the remaining 30%?

  3. The bbc ran a couple of articles on the topic of dementia recently. One, a study of 200,000 also showed decreased risk of dementia for those adhering to positive lifestyle habits. The risk in actual terms changes from 18 to 11 per 1000 people. There is a short video with some good pointers.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/health-48963215

    This article touches on the difference in risk of dementia for women vs men, and why that might be.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/articles/cp03zwze47zo

    1. So they think it is the genes.

      Interestingly, the risk factors for males and females are different for Parkinson’s.

      Anemia is women biggest risk factor for that by far and estrogen is what protects women from developing it as quickly as males do.

      I already forgot males risk factors for it, but I was thinking TumorNecrosis Factor 2 being a factor for women or anemia or estrogen maybe.

      Lots to look up.

        1. Diet soda or coffee could be interfering with iron.

          Interestingly, coffee is protective because of the caffeine but it can cause anemia in women and low hemoglobin is a big risk factor for mortality.

          I am not sure if coffee would have a gender difference or not.

          Nuts being helpful would have this as one mechanism

          1. Caffeine is protective and caffeinated coffee can be protective but only if it doesn’t cause anemia and raise homocysteine levels.

            1. What interests me is the fact that women have anemia maybe in both Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s and anemia is related to elevated homocysteine.

              So both might be homocysteine?

              But estrogen is protective for a while in Parkinson’s….

              Not in Alzheimer’s?

              Vegans get Alzheimer’s when they don’t supplement B12? Not Parkinson’s?

              Selah

              1. Vegan contributes to Alzheimer’s if they don’t supplement

                Is it the same for Parkinson’s?

                Vegan has been shown as protective with Parkinson’s protecting the dopaminergic neurons from neurotoxins by things like induction of heat shock proteins and it also aids blood brain barrier transport of L-dopa.

                For the WFPB see the autism and broccoli dprouts mechanism (which has helped my brain considerably)

                For the Keto crowd eating calorie restriction can accomplish some of the same things.

                For the questions category:

                Are the non supplementing vegan males getting Parkinsons or Alzheimer’s?

                For the women who have anemia

                what is the difference between the anemic women who get Parkinson’s versus Alzheimer’s?

                And if the none-supplementing vegans aren’t getting Parkinson’s, why?

  4. The Mediterranean diet is not a low fat diet. Mediterranean diets tend to have a moderate amount of fat, but most of it comes from healthy fats.

  5. OFF TOPIC. I apologize. Can someone please tell me what the anticipated changes are to the Daily List. I’ve not been able to find it. Thanks. (I want to be sure I include them sooner rather then later— I’m too old to wait.

  6. I do wish Dr. Greger would investigate Dr. Bredesen’s work (I have a Clinical Nutritionist friend who’s been working with this program and reports very encouraging results).

    1. I doubt you’ll see Dr Gregor talking about Bredesen given Bredesen’s focus on ketogenic eating and his allowance of small amounts of animal protein. It’s more important for Gregor to perpetuate his cherry picking of the data to support veganism than to actually present the best ways to improve one’s health.

  7. Dr Dale Bredesen has been able to reverse Alzheimer’s by systematically addressing multiple risk factors. He uses a ketogenic diet with low saturated fats and 11-16 hours between dinner and breakfast. That’s the diet I now follow to improve my health and to avoid Alzheimer’s.

    1. When speaking with my friend (who’s intimately associated with the Bredesen program), there’s testing to determine the types of therapy and lifestyle changes that are particular to the individual; regarding keto, apparently some patients get it and others don’t – and it’s often not a constant program, but they move the patients just over the borderline into ketosis and, based on the individual profile, shift them out again. To me it makes sense that it’s individualized.

    2. Herb,

      Dr. Bredesen uses way more than Keto diet and intermittent fasting and that part of the diet is about blood sugar and insulin, which Whole Food Plant-Based improves better than Keto does and people from both diets use Intermittent fasting, but for women it can cause glucose tolerance issues and even for men, if the people aren’t highly compliant, they will be worse off because they will be more sensitive to carbs than people who are not Keto because lowering saturated fats is how to reverse Type 2 Diabetes by healing the Pancreas.

      1. Dr. Bredesen threw out a wide net and Dr. Greger is covering a lot of it topic by topic.

        For instance, everybody, including Dr. Bredesen talks about lowering Homocysteine, which vegans can have the lowest possible levels, if they supplement with viable B12 and eat their greens.

        Honestly, it is Dr. Greger, not Dr. Bredesen who taught me how to know how much B12 I need to lower my Homocysteine and Dr. McDougall taught me that I need to eat plant-foods for the folate part or I could have a really bad problem caused by the fact that the body can’t digest enough of it and if we don’t get rid of it, that causes problems. I want to call it a folate storm, but I don’t know that he used the word, “storm” am I might be borrowing that term from “glutamate storm”

        1. Dr Bredesen didn’t mention that supplementing vegans tested at the lowest levels.

          I don’t remember him talking about the saturated fats and showing the blocked arteries either.

        2. Deb,
          What is considered to be ideal levels of homocysteine and B12?

          Mine appear to both be high normal. Would stopping B12 supplements lower both? I find a lot of variance in what are considered normal ranges. I think you are informed on the topic as is Marilyn Kaye. Thanks!

    3. Herb

      Your claims are deluded. So are Bredesen’s for that matter. Bredesen’s claims haven’t been rep;licated by anyone else or investigated using RCTs. He’s just another MD chasing big bucks by blowing up his personal treatment approach in an unscientific manner and making extravagant claims about it.

      bredesen even claims that higher cholesterol is protective when it comes to Alzheimer’s because ther is an association between low cholesterol and the disease. Of course there is, Alzheimer’s causes low cholesterol.
      ‘“RESULTS:
      Cholesterol levels in men with dementia and, in particular, those with Alzheimer disease had declined at least 15 years before the diagnosis and remained lower than cholesterol levels in men without dementia throughout that period. The difference in slopes was robust to adjustment for potential confounding factors, including vascular risk factors, weight change, alcohol intake, and use of lipid-lowering agents.
      CONCLUSION:
      A decline in serum total cholesterol levels may be associated with early stages in the development of dementia.”
      http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamaneurology/fullarticle/793179

      If low cholesterol increased Alzheimer’s risk. then people whose cholesterol is lowered (by statins or diet) would have increased risk. They don’t. If anything, they have lower risk. Also if low cholesterol were a risk factor, you would expect populations with average low cholesterol levels like Africans would have higher Alzheimer’s rates than populations with higher average cholesterol levels like African Americans. They don’t
      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3212027/

      In fact, high cholesterol in mid-life is a recognised risk factor for Alzheimer’s eg
      “An association between cholesterol and the development of AD was suggested in the early 1990s and ever since, an increasing amount of research has confirmed that there is a link between cholesterol and the development of AD. A high cholesterol levels in mid-life is a risk for AD and statins, i.e., cholesterol-lowering drugs, reduce this risk.”
      http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0047637405002381

      There is an association between low cholesterol in older people and Alzheimer’s. But declining cholesterol is likely to be a pre-clinical indicator of Alzheimer’s rather than causal. Certainly there is reason to believe that “an alteration in cholesterol metabolism could play a pivotal role in early stages of AD.”
      http://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2006/073976/abs/

      Of course, there are plenty of saturated fat and cholesterol loons out there who want to believe Bredesen and ignore the bulk of the evidence. They represent a lucartive market. Most ketogenic diets seem to be built on saturated fat and ‘Of all the different types of fatty acids, the findings are most consistent for an increased risk of cognitive decline with a higher intake of saturated fatty acids.’
      https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0197458014003546

      it is simply risible when keto diet advocates accuse Greger of cherrypicking – this is such blatant gaslighting that I doubt if anyone can key in such claims without rolling on the floor with laughter. Greger’s views on lifetyle and diet risk factors are mainstream and consistent with the evidence. Yours are not whicjh is why I wrote that you are deluded … whether you have been gulled by others or have happily pulled the wool over your own eyes is irrlevent I suppose. But keep doing what you are doing and you are setting yourself up for gonitive decllne and dementia.
      https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/alzheimers-disease/in-depth/15-simple-diet-tweaks-cut-alzheimers-risk/art-20342112

      Incidentally, Greger promotes Whole Food Plant Based (WFPB) diets which may or may not contain small amounts of animal foods.

      1. Oh dear, ‘gonitive’ = cognitive.

        Even the mention of ‘keto diets for general health and preventing Alzheimer’s’ makes me lose fine motoer control because I’m shaking with laughter. And it doesn’t help that it’s difficult to see through the tears of laughter.

        by the way if you are determined to do keto, you should carefully control the types of fats that you consume. The AHA’s scientific advisory on dietary fats and cardiovascular disease is a good source of information. So is the World Health Organization’s scientific consensus papero n dietary fatty acids

        https://www.ahajournals.org/doi/full/10.1161/CIR.0000000000000510
        https://www.who.int/nutrition/publications/nutrientrequirements/fatsandfattyacids_humannutrition/en/

      2. Boy I struck a nerve didn’t I?

        So I’m the one who is deluded even though something like 15 doctors and scientists published a study last year – see link below- in a major journal documenting significant improvements in 100 patients with cognitive difficulties/AD using the Bredesen protocol. And the abstract concludes by urging an RCT be conducted.

        Would you please write to the families of all the 100 patients and tell them that they are deluded and that they really did not improve and that they are being treated by a charlatan.

        How many patients improving would it take for you to acknowledge reality? 500,000, or perhaps every single A.D. patient in America? I suspect that no number of patients and no set of studies would convince you as you’re apparently only looking for evidence that supports your preconceptions.

        You’d rather hold onto your quasi religious beliefs about what diets work and which ones don’t than to fairly evaluate the most promising and dramatic intervention for AD patients in the world.

        How sad.

        And it’s an absolute scandal that Dr. Gregor has as far as I can tell never once mentioned this study or anything else about this protocol. I guess it’s more important to be an idealogical vegan then to actually follow the evidence wherever it may lead.

        Yours truly

        ‘deluded’

        https://wellmax.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/reversal-of-cognitive-decline-100-patients-2161-0460-1000450.pdf

        1. Yes, deluded. I provided links to the scientific studies showing the links between saturated fat consumption, cholesterol and Alzheimer’s. You have ignored them all of course.

          You on the other hand are basing your beliefs on Bredesen’s claims and case studies of people, some of whom who did not have Alzheimer’s. No randomisation, no controls, not even a common diagnosis for all the patients.

          For all we know, too, there may have been thousands of similar patients but Bredesen et al cherry picked the 100 with the best results. How can we know?

          And it is not even clear which if any of the shotgun treatments applied were responsible for the reported benefits..

          If this is the strength of evidence that you are hanging your hat on, then I have to say that you must be very trusting. And angry, given your remarks.

          Those allegations you make about ‘cherry picking’, ‘vegan agenda’ and ‘religious’ are typical of the keto/saturated fat/cholesterol sceptics who realise that they are unable to provide convincing arguments based on solid scientific evidence and therefore resort to gaslighting, insults and claims that anecdotes and case studies are more important than any number of well-designed methodologically rigorous studies to the contrary.

          1. You don’t point to even one RCT just association studies which are completely irrelevant anyway as they relate to prevention and not treatment. Yet you critique this study because it’s not an RCT. Nice!

            You dismiss 100 case reports as I knew you would based on not much more than hand waving. You are apparently so much more knowledgeable than the scores of doctors and researchers who peer reviewed and published this analysis.

            Perhaps a trial would show that his approach is not effective. But if and until that happens to dismiss this evidence completely is utterly irresponsible particularly when there are no other large scale RCT’s showing any substantial benefit for those suffering from cognitive impairment or AD.

            1. Herb

              “association studies which are completely irrelevant anyway as they relate to prevention and not treatment.”

              Since you were the one who wrote that you were eating a keto diet to avoid Alzheimer’s, I fail to see how they are irrelevant responses to your posts..

              In any case, using this very same argument, your claims are ‘completely irrelevant’ as you put it since the video you are commenting upon is about preventing Alzheimer’s with lifestyle yet your posts are about Bredesen’s claims to have reversed Alzheimer’s. Such accusations on your part therefore give the appearance of gaslighting.

              Just as doess your accusation that I claim to know more than the 20-some doctors who authored this paper. In fact, the paper doesn’t claim anywhere I could see that a keto diet is good for general health or will prevent Alzheimer’s. You on the other hand appear to think that high blood cholesterol and diets high in saturated fat are health-promoting when national and international professional bodies (and health authorities around the globe) unambiguously state that they are not eg
              https://academic.oup.com/eurheartj/article/38/32/2459/3745109
              https://www.ahajournals.org/doi/full/10.1161/CIR.000000000000051

              I have already posted links to studies showing that dietary saturated fat is linked to cognitive problems, as is blood cholesterol in mid-life, so no need to repeat them here.

              As for Bredesen’s claim to have reversed Alzheimer’s I am sceptical. For one thing, we don’t know how many of the 100 patients actually had Alzheimer’s. The article does not tell us.

              For another thing, how do we know which of the many interventions was the one or ones responsible for the reported improvements? For example, Patient 3 ‘was treated with the personalized program described previously[1], which in her case included bio-identical hormone replacement, restoring insulin sensitivity with a mildly ketogenic, plant-rich diet, regular exercise, and stress reduction; enhancing her microbiome with probiotics and prebiotics; reducing systemic inflammation with omega-3 fats; enhancing vitamin D and vitamin K2; enhancing methylation with methyl-cobalamin and methyl-tetrahydrofolate; and brain training.’ How can anyone conclude from this that keto diets prevent and/or reverse Alzheimer’s?

              For a third thing, it may even possibly have been none of them and the benefits came from
              . the placebo/Hawthorne effect
              . time the great healer
              . unreported changes in patients’ medication by Bredesen and his colleagues since some drug side effects are known mimic dementia and
              cause cognitive/memory etc symptoms.
              https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5753993/
              https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0169463

              We just don’t know what other variables changed.

              This is one reason why case studies are considered one of the weakest forms of evidence along with personal testimonials.

              it’s therefore not surprising that mainstream medicine has not embraced Bredesen’s claims.

              Finally, it may also be worth noting that none of the authors of that article disclosed any financial conflict of interest. Given that Bredesen has monetised his protocol and the other doctors/authors using his approach also have a financial stake in its success since they purchased software, training etc from Bredesen’s company, there does appear to be a financial conflict of interest which should be publicly acknowledged.

    4. Herb,

      Low saturated fats and low cholesterol are important Factors, but Keto isn’t better than Whole Food Plant-Based.

      If you look at the Adventists and The Nurses study, and other nations where it was nkn-existant even with the genetic risk factors, the places with the lowest rates are not keto.

      They are low saturated fats and cholesterol and high fiber and things like that.

      1. The Adventists are the community I recommend you look at because The Sherzai’s are working with thousands of people in 2 communities – one with fewer than 5% of the population getting Alzheimer’s and one with high rates of Alzheimer’s. The 2 communities are next door to each other and those cases are being monitored for decades.

        1. There are so many places around the world where Whole Food Plant Based results in very low levels of Alzheimer’s and low levels of all the other diseases.

          Dr Ornish has a unified theory because the same first reverses all of these Western diseases.

          He was able to reverse heart disease, and cancer with the same dietary principles which reverse type 2 Diabetes.

          I don’t believe there are any Blue zones with longevity which the populations are Keto. Not one.

          I could be wrong, but I don’t think so.

          1. There isn’t either a global or historical basis to think Keto is better.

            They know more about Alzheimers by looking at the nations than they do by a few case studies.

            I am not putting Dr Bredesen down and I use several things from his list, but the Sherzai’s have been walking with communities of so many people with documented Alzheimer’s and dementia and so many people who have a lifestyle which genuinely was protective against it.

            Dr Greger will be sharing his views on both intermittent fasting and keto pretty soon.

            1. Where I am going to agree with you is that he reversed brain problemS in people and made up a list of things to look at, but most of that list has nothing to do with Keto and Tom is right that the people weren’t properly diagnosed and it was case studies not a double blind study.

              Dr Ornish is the one I am waiting for and I am hoping that he keeps track of a lot of data like blood pressure and Diabetes and homocysteine , etc.

              Dr Ornish can we request good lab reports?

              1. Herb,

                I am not against Dr Bredesen.

                I had such a major brain break down about 7 years ago. I had my brain shatter to pieces and lost such touch with reality and was having hallucinations and night terrors and inverted day for night and was totally out of my mind.

                Even my dearest friends started blackballing me. I got lost for an hour driving to my best friends house and said and believed and did such ridiculous things that it is too humiliating to talk about a lot of it.

                I failed the peanut butter left nostril test is the closest I can get to claiming it was Alzheimers.

                I can’t claim any disease. I can only list what has improved my brain and some of my list comes from Dr Bredesen and some comes from Dr Greger and some comes from Dr MacDougall and some comes from Dr Barnard and some comes from Dr Fuhrman and some comes from places like Vie light and infrared research and Micropulse ICES and most of all PubMed.

                1. I had such a major brain break down about 7 years ago. I had my brain shatter to pieces and lost such touch with reality and was having hallucinations and night terrors and inverted day for night and was totally out of my mind.

                  Even my dearest friends started blackballing me. I got lost for an hour driving to my best friends house and said and believed and did such ridiculous things that it is too humiliating to talk about a lot of it.

                  I failed the peanut butter left nostril test is the closest I can get to claiming it was Alzheimers.
                  —————————————————————————————————–
                  Deb, contact the site below and take a computer-based test ~ once every 6 months. They may even ask if you are willing to do an MRI.

                  I’m on there because it helps them gather information on the brain through your response time in various tests… over time.

                  (But you might want to refuse the MRI, as I have. ‘-)

                  https://www.brainhealthregistry.org/

                  1. I had my brain shatter to pieces and lost such touch with reality and was having hallucinations and night terrors and inverted day for night and was totally out of my mind.
                    ———————————————————–
                    Coulda been worse… “Green Snakes on the Ceiling” worse. ‘-)

                    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Kb_5_X0EOg

                    1. Lonie,

                      You are absolutely right. It could have been so much worse.

                      While I was going through it, I was thinking about all of the schizophrenic and autistic young people who I know and there is a wheelchair community nearby and so many of them can’t communicate almost at all and so many people have such hard lives.

  8. What about environmental toxins? My current understanding is that there’s a measurable amount of protective microglial mobilization in response to environmental toxins too small for the nasal filtering to trap.

    1. Yes, aluminum is part of it and I did the 12 weeks of 1 liter of Fiji water (silica) per day to get it out of my brain and it got rid of hallucinations and night terrors.

      I was so happy.

        1. Tea is a topic I am learning about because it helps lower glutamate and it stops the formation of beta-amyloid.

          And I am looking at the failure of calcium buffering systems.

          I am low in Magnesium probably most of the time and when I hear too much calcium is causing problems my first thought is let’s increase magnesium.

          I am not a science person, and I am just learning things one sentence at a time.

          But calcium and glutamate are 2 things causing damage is what I am meditating on as I think about tea.

          1. I have read other concepts which I am trying to figure out.

            N-methyl D-asparate receptor plays a pivotal roe in synaptic plasticity, which is also related to neurotoxicity.

            And how tumor necrosis factor is linked with AD. By a year from now, I might understand more of the science, but tumor necrosis factor just became interesting.

            1. So TNFR2 would be maybe a potential mechanism for turmeric?

              So inflammation is from TNFR1 and that would relate to Alzheimers and Butyrate modulates the production of it.

              Butyrate is good bacteria from plant food like beans and berries and intact grains

              1. One of the reasons I wonder is that they say women get Alzheimer’s more and men get Parkinson’s and I found that women have TNFR2 deficiency which works in concert with the gut microbiome to cause demyelinatibg autoimmune.

                Could that be why women might get it more?

                1. I think I could have been on the right track using the high doses of broccoli sprouts for whatever brain problems I have.

                  Heat Shock Proteins are involved with all of it. They were talking about mechanisms and said that animal studies support the view that modulating the levels of Heat Shock Proteins could prove beneficial for the treatment of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Huntington’s, ALS, prion disease and we already have the study with Autism. That is very cool. I chose the right study to keep doing.

                  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK6495/

                  To me, the turmeric study and the broccoli sprout study and the blueberries and lutein foods are the ones I am doing all Summer long and there has been an improvement.

                  1. I went back to the Broccoli sprout and Autism video and started looking up the mechanisms and Alzheimer’s and wonderfully, it was there.

                    MTor drives Alzheimer’s and may be a therapeutic target.
                    https://nutritionfacts.org/video/best-foods-for-autism/

                    Heat Shock Proteins may be a mechanism to help.

                    Inflammation and the whole Tumor Necrosis Factor 2 process

                    The oxidative stress

                    Mitochondrial dysfunction

                    I LOVE that video. I nominate it for a future FlashBack Friday so that people with every kind of brain problem can eat a whole bunch of broccoli sprouts and celebrate that they cross the blood-brain barrier.

        1. Lida, depends on where you live. Some places have adequate boron in the soil, and so in foods grown there.
          One clue is if people in your area tend to have joint, arthritis type problems. This is common in up to 95% of people in areas with low boron. Areas with high level boron in soil and water have very few issues.
          And, of course, we need boron to build bone, so it helps prevent osteoporosis.
          Where I live is such an area, so I do supplement with Now brand boron from calcium borogluconate. That is the type that was used in the studies. I take 3-6 mg. (1-2 capsules) a day.
          If you don’t like to swallow capsules, you can open them and put it on a spoon. It’s pleasant tasting, (at least to me).

          1. Marilyn,
            I have no clue about the soil in my area other than it is heavy clay. I do have osteopenia and would certainly like for it not to progress to the osteoporosis that plagued my mother. If there are no caveats to taking the boron supplement you mentioned I would like to try it. Thanks very much for your help.

  9. What influence does sugar have on the development of Alzheimer’s? Both my parents died with/of dementia. In the home my mother lived for the last year of her life, the caregivers spoke about dementia as Diabetes 3.

    1. Chris,

      Diabetes is part of it and that is why Whole Food Plant-Based being able to heal people of T2D and lower the blood sugar of T1D is so valuable. Saturated fats clogging arteries is part of it. Aluminum in the brain is part of it. High Homocysteine is part of it – vegan with supplementation, plus eating vegetables helps that. Not sleeping at night and not having the brain cleaned up is part of it. Not having enough gamma waves is part of it. Not getting enough Vitamin D is part of it. Having the wrong Copper to Zinc ratio is part of it.

      There is a whole list of contributing factors.

  10. ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE CAN BE REVERSED!

    And I think the above statement will be proved out before the end of this decade.

    But you will be unlikely to learn how, here. Reason is I think NF.o has a study bias.

    And just maybe, that is understandable. After all, people come here to learn about WFPB eating.

    They don’t want to hear how a molecule called TIMP2 may be a powerful tool to pull someone with early stage Alzheimer’s back from the abyss. Or how it has been discovered that Naringinen can facilitate the removal of the a-beta and tau waste from the brain… especially if used in accord with sleeping on one’s side to further facilitate the removal of the waste via a channel of spinal fluid that runs along the outer limits of the brain.

    Some of these I’ve known about and practiced for a number of years, but the truly enlightening information is still a few years away from proof positive and then medical community acceptance.

    Yes, prevention is the best policy and we should all do EVERYTHING possible toward that status. But don’t approach it as if you or someone you know with early signs are doomed. Maybe the cures will be available before you or they cross some unknown threshold from which there may be no return.

    1. Lonie,

      It can be reversed during certain stages of the process.

      Dr. Ornish is doing a study of reversing it just using his diet right now and he said that he isn’t allowed to talk about it yet, but that it will be positive improvement.

      Mentioned in this video is that it is possible to even use brain plasticity to improve function, but they believe that there is a point of no return once a certain amount of the structure of the brain are gone and nerve cells die.

      Before that, a whole bunch of things can be reversed and he has a Turmeric study for instance, where people had amazing results.

      These words he was reading were from a study.

      1. but they believe that there is a point of no return once a certain amount of the structure of the brain are gone and nerve cells die.
        ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–
        I’ve seen it postulated that neurons once thought dead may only be dormant. ITBT, (If that be true) then reperfusion via increased oxygen through a repaired blood supply transport could re-awaken a demented brain.

        1. Yes, Lonie,

          I watched a Big Pharma video on a Parkinson’s drug and they felt that Alzheimers and Parkinson’s damage was just damage like any damage to the brain and that even just increasing oxygen and blood flow to those areas does show that some of the neurons would work. I think there is a TED talk on it.

          But they are talking about the fact that the really dead ones are dead and it is hard to get plasticity.

          If you look at the stroke community, people like Bob Dennis capitalize on the plasticity window and gain function beyond where he started pre-stroke, but most people don’t succeed.

          They need so much repetition and something like TMS or LLLT or Hyperbaric Oxygen plus tons of repetition.

          Hard for Alzheimers after a certain point of damage.

          1. The Parkinson’s drug helped increase angiogenesis.

            What I remember from a year and a half ago is that I had some symptoms like the brain problems, which I wanted to increase angiogenesis and some symptoms like a lump on my breast and eczema on one nipple which I was learning all about anti angiogenesis.

            Laughing.

            Yes, it is enough to confuse someone with brain issues so much that they may either fall apart mentally or gain brain plasticity from the crazy process.

    2. More recent info about carrying out the trash from the brain, the link below is about the findings that one protein may do the job.

      https://neurosciencenews.com/autophagy-aging-14529/

      “Cells dispose of harmful “trash” through autophagy, a normal and necessary process in which aggregated proteins and dysfunctional structures are handled. If any part of this fails, waste builds up inside cells, eventually killing them. According to a new study from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, as cells age, their ability to shed harmful refuse declines. The findings suggest that the deterioration of autophagy in aged neurons—cells that never replicate and are as old as the bodies they inhabit—could be a risk factor for a suite of neurodegenerative diseases such as ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.”

  11. Thanks Dr. Greger for including this important topic in a flashback Friday. Terrific job in my opinion. When I was in Medical School in the early 70’s Alzheimer’s Disease was rare… clearly something has changed. So it seems like something in the environment has changed. Neal Barnard, President of PCRM, wrote a book entitled, Power Foods for the Brain. He goes through all the factors and there are many but he seemed to conclude based on correlation that it was certain metals thats entry into the brain was facilitated by saturated fat and cholesterol. These metals were iron, copper, zinc and aluminum. Dr. John McDougall wrote two newsletter articles… see June 2004 and June 2017 issues… laying out a convincing case for Aluminum. I’m not sure “reductionistic” science will provide a definitive answer. The best we can hope for is better population studies. Dr. Greger alluded to the limits when he mentions the challenges of teasing out all the dietary factors. Since Aluminum is something our bodies don’t need it seems wise to avoid. For the sources of aluminum in the environment see the NF.org video, Aluminum in Vaccines vs Food. Since Alzheimer’s is responsible for 60-75% of dementia it seems best to use the precautionary principle and avoid aluminum. Of course eating correctly can reduce the risks of vascular dementia aka “multi stroke” dementia and Parkinson’s. as well. One of the issues I have with all the recommendations is the lack of “proportion of variance” explained. In other words the relative importance of factors in the prevention and reversal of chronic conditions. A more straightforward example would be type 2 diabetes… aerobic exercise has been shown to improve but not “cure” type 2 diabetes. As explained in NF.org video’s, What causes insulin resistance & the spillover effect links obesity to diabetes it is the fat in the diet and fat on the body that is mainly responsible for type 2 diabetes. For now my recommendations for individuals interested in lowering their risk of AZ is to avoid saturated fat and aluminum. However the science keeps coming so you need to keep up by subscribing to NF.org and revisiting old video’s as new issues come up in your journey.

    1. Dr. Don, thank you for post. Chemist here. Boron competes with absorption of aluminum. Just as bromine in bread, fluorine in water, compete with iodine.

  12. If you are at risk of any mental disease than move out and go to the place where insects are alive and doing well . In Toronto and around there are no bees, wasp,
    June beetles, and on and on…you name it.
    Of course limiting the fats is going to help, because
    fats concentrate a lot of pesticides, herbicides, .?.

    1. If you are at risk of any mental disease than move out and go to the place where insects are alive and doing well . In Toronto and around there are no bees, wasp,
      June beetles, and on and on…you name it.
      ———————————————————
      Ant, it’s getting to where there are no places to hide it seems.

      Here where I live (wide open spaces) there seems to be way fewer insects leading to fewer birds, lizards, horned toads etc. There’s a producing oil well about a football field and a half SW of my property.

      There’re other wells in the area but we often have wind to do a natural air exchange, so I’m not sure the voc’s from the oil well(s) are the problem.

      I’m a firm believer in the effect solar flares and solar winds have on the earth, so I wouldn’t be surprised to learn someday that we are being affected by something out of our control such as that. My home was built during the 1960s so no off-gassing insulation installed. But by the same token, it allows air exchange with the outside.

      I personally turn on an air ionizer occasionally to scrub the air.

  13. I am going to put a first-person comment here and say that my brain has improved so much using this site.

    The poor moderators will know firsthand that when I first came here, I was having night terrors and hallucinations and mental confusion and social anxiety and executive function problems.

    Sorry for all of the long posts from a terrified mind.

    The things which worked for me:

    Healing my blood sugar. I used going off of animal products and oil and refined carbs and sugar.

    Lowering Homocysteine By supplementing B12 and eating plant foods for folate. (I have twice now had blips with less viable forms of B12 and I am back to Cyano and one of those blips I ended up with hallucinations again, but they went away by changing forms. Methyl by itself is not reliable. Don’t do it by itself.)

    Sleep helps a lot when I can do it, which still doesn’t always happen, but, boy I can see a difference when I get sleep.

    Superfoods have helped a lot. High doses of Kale, Turmeric, Blueberries, Broccoli Sprouts, Saffron, Rosemary

    Nuts and avocado also seemed to be helping, but I have those on hold for weight loss. I am going to be doing the 1/3 of an ounce of nuts. I don’t know how to do it with avocado.

    The Broccoli Sprouts healing social anxiety has helped more than social anxiety and since I have been upping the level of the greens and cruciferous and berries and have been getting turmeric, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon daily, I see a bigger difference in executive function and that helps with overall functioning, too.

    The Binaural beats and Micropulse ICES and Nasal light and Infrared lights have helped. Getting enough gamma has helped, but it was alpha and broccoli sprouts which healed my social anxiety and the more I research the more fascinating the whole Alpha, Beta, Delta, Gamma, Theta.

    A lot of brain problems are associated with too high or low of those wavelengths in certain sections of the brain and I am still learning and playing, but the difference is so huge.

    I feel like if I could solve for sleep and have a little less stress that I might genuinely totally heal my brain.

    It is hard to solve for stress when so many bad things are happening, but I feel like I am still doing okay and that is pretty encouraging.

    1. The Fiji Water really helped.

      Taking Vegan Omega 3’s and zinc now and then, helps me to feel like I am touching more of the bases.

      I tested so low on the brain gauge that I know that I had serious damage.

      There has been much improvement over the past 4 months.

      I think the brain plasticity is helping.

      The games like Luminosity and Kid’s math and logic games feel like wasting time and I really think they are wasting time, but trying to learn science and nutrition I feel like have improved my cognitive function considerably.

    2. It is hard to solve for stress when so many bad things are happening
      ——————————————————————————————-
      Deb, if I may offer a suggestion… instead of combating stress, why not offer the body ways to diminish its effects.

      Can’t really offer anything proven off-hand other than remembering seeing a product referred to as Super Stress B Complex, suggesting that B vitamins help with stress. (I have this product on my medicine table but seldom take it… because I read it contains nicotinamide rather than nicotinic acid. I’ve read that nicotinamide may interfere with the NMN I’m currently taking.)

      1. Thanks, Lonie,

        I am trying to eat my B Vitamins as much as possible and I am taking Omega 3’s both based on studies I read back at the beginning of this whole process.

        Magnesium is suddenly something I am more worried about after logging my food at Sparkpeople and that might genuinely help.

        I will tell you that I took the Brain Gauge test today. A month after the last time and I am still testing so low.

        My TOJ score is still 5 and I still test so low on time passing.

        It feels like I need to work on those two areas one at a time.

        There is a book called the woman who changed her brain and she made up exercises for improving brain plasticity.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uk1ZpxuYic8

        I don’t know how to exercise TOJ, but eating fresh fruits and vegetables all Summer long until the Fall is one of the strategies for the fact that I don’t have a sense of time passing.

        I have decided to try to estimate short periods of time – something like 30 seconds to 60 seconds and to just do the process over and over and over until my brain understands that I want it to keep track of time. Days of the week and dates will be next, but I have to start somewhere and short periods of time are easiest because I can see how far off I am.

        I find the Brain Gauge frustrating. Mostly, in real life, I see my brain healing, but I still am getting a 5 on TOJ and not much better on time passing.

        Learning things has helped better than brain games. Watching thousands of Dr. Greger videos has connected the neuronal pathways of my brain and now watching cooking videos may help with the executive function of that process.

        But not grasping that if I leave work at 7 pm and drive to Whole Foods and it takes me 25 minutes to get there and a half hour there and 25 minutes to drive home and that means that prepping for dinner and eating is happening at a later time and people who don’t have a sense of time passing need to use a compensatory logic to understand what is going on. I think seeing that I really don’t have a sense of time passing has helped me to know that I better use other parts of my brain to help things out.

        No improvement in 4 months in 2 of those areas and only 60% plasticity is what the reality is, but I am getting more strategies.

        I feel like I also need to keep trying to smell things with my left nostril, even though I can’t.

        My brain has a memory of smell and I feel like if they can get people to see with their tongues, I am going to keep trying to get back my sense of smell and time and whatever TOJ was again. Yes, I have to learn what it is again, but reading PubMed is another thing which genuinely is helping my brain.

        It just doesn’t show up on the Brain Gauge, so I have to have my own gauge of information apart from that.

        I healed social anxiety almost entirely and that doesn’t show up on the Brain Gauge either.

        There is a new gadget though which is coming out which can show you whether your emotions are happy or sad or angry. It reads the brain signals and there is one already out where you could do things like run your “smart home” with your brain waves, and I suspect that would be excellent for getting control over your thinking.

        My concern with it is that it might stop the executive function process even more.

        If I only had to think and have my drapes open, I think my brain would get more passive at telling my hands to brush my teeth.

        I use that because 50% of people don’t brush their teeth twice a day, so it is a real example and I know a mother of an autistic young man where he won’t brush his teeth at all unless she lifts his toothbrush into his hand and she has done the math of whether to let his teeth rot or how to motivate him or what rewards to remove, but it is such a big issue and 50% of people don’t brush their teeth twice a day and he is one of them.

          1. Marilyn,

            Thank you so much!

            I love him and I am a big believer in Brain plasticity.

            Especially gadget assisted brain plasticity.

            My gadgets are all things which improves brain plasticity.

            Intermittent fasting increases brain plasticity, which is what interests me about it
            most.

            I only test 60% plasticity on the brain gauge and that is one number which frustrates me.

            I might try acupuncture to see if I can improve it.

            Another thing I have been taking is serrapeptase, which I believe by faith is cleaning up misguided proteins, but watching this video, I still need the plasticity.

  14. This article is poorly written and difficult to read. Where is the list of the “seven factors” mentioned several times? Please give a numbered list. And please rewrite the sentence containing “10%, 25%” to be clearer.

    1. Okay, I was watching a video, but I went to the transcript and will agree that people who are reading the transcripts are particularly getting ripped off.

      Here are the 7 risk factors:

      In order from highest of the biggest impact to lowest of the biggest impact

      Physical Inactivity
      Depression
      Smoking
      Hypertension
      Midlife Obesity
      Cognitive Inactivity
      Diabetes Mellitus

      So, Sugar/Insulin is the least of the big ones.

      So, what are the other mechanisms, which are more often involved?

      Circulation / blood flow
      Decreasing inflammation
      Oxygen in blood/circulation again, toxins
      Blocked arteries/stress/heart risk factors
      Brain Plasticity – having larger neural pathway involvement.

      Obesity is on here, but is that sometimes sugar and sometimes circulation?

      I am not saying it as someone who is losing weight.

      I am saying it because people control their Diabetes long before losing weight on WFPB and I would be in that category. My brain has improved so much and my weight hasn’t, but all of the high blood sugar symptoms went away and so did my cold toes and fingers, even with being cold in the bad weather we had up to the first day of Summer, it was never cold fingers or toes. It was cold because it was cold and rainy and breezy out.

      1. Or should I say it this way:

        I lowered saturated fat and cholesterol so much and I used gadgets which increased my circulation and I got rid of my sugar problems, but didn’t lose all that much weight.

        PEMF increases circulation a lot. So does Infrared and Low-Level Laser Therapy and massage and acupressure. I have all of those, plus a nasal light and they all do increase circulation and oxygenation in the blood.

        Does lowering inflammation and increasing circulation and lowering homocysteine and improving blood sugar and insulin regulation get you anywhere on this list?

    2. Bhami

      You are very confused.

      This isn’t an article, it is a video. Also you need to read the scinetific studies which Dr Greger quotes in the video to obtain the further details you want

      if you want articles to be rewritten, you need to take this up with the the authors of those articles or the editors of the journals in which they were published. Dr Greger does not have the power to rewrite other people’s journal articles.

      Also, the 7 risk factors are clearly shown on the screen eg go to the 2.05 mark in the video.

  15. what about the role of curcumin/turmeric for prevention and slowing the progression of AD and Parkinsons? It was thought that high turmeric consumption might be a reason for low prevalence of AD and Parkinsons in Indian subcontinent. Wasn’t sure if there were specific double blind studies to confirm this?

      1. Lida, the test for B12 is not reliable. The better test is for Methylmalonic Acid.
        Also if your RDW is high, or your MCV is low that can indicate inadequate B 12.
        Of course homocysteine can be high due to inadequate B6 and/ or B9 (folate).
        Actually since all the B vits work together, low amounts of one can mean low absorption of others.
        Just taking B12 does not help for some people.

        1. Marilyn,
          Thank you. My doctor doesn’t seem to be monitoring my health adequately. I will ask her to investigate further and ask for the Methylmalonic test. I became alarmed after reading about the dire consequences of B12 levels being too high as well as homocysteine levels.

          1. Lida, I’m posting this article from the NIH. Hope it will help you discuss the issue with your doctor.
            From what I understand, it isn’t high B12 that is really the problem. It is that having it read high indicates something is causing that.
            Scroll down in the article to the conclusion, that high B9 or B12 isn’t associated with reduced mortality.

      2. Lonie,

        No matter what, it is the Homocysteine you want to lower.

        Folate from foods is the next thing.

        Dr. McDougall has a video on why it is important that the Folate be from foods.

        We have an enzyme which can’t metabolize the nonfood Folate that well. Then, it ends up not being metabolized and that causes a mess.

        If you absolutely can’t find foods with Folate, I think you can metabolize tiny amounts of it, but most supplements have way too much.

        1. Deb,
          This may have been meant for me?
          I do eat so many of the foods rich in folate so it’s a mystery why my homocysteine level is not lower.

          1. Lida,

            Sorry about the name swap.

            I didn’t sleep a wink last night and still haven’t slept.

            A relative was in a motorcycle accident, but once again God was merciful. Only broken bones and lots of cuts and bruises.

            Two young men around me, one a relative and one a friend’s son both got in motorcycle accidents the year before last and they both ended up with very long recovery processes. So far, it has been an extra merciful process that nobody was speeding on the motorcycles. Cars pulling out of parking lots didn’t see them. This rider is an old guy and I was really worried about the whole blood thinner thing, but all is well.

            1. Okay, so you have enough Homocysteine and you eat a lot of Folate.

              Somewhere in the middle of my looking things up today, something raised Homocysteine and I am thinking it was coffee.

              1. Deb,
                I do drink one cup of coffee in the morning only and have done so for more years than I care to admit! I can’t believe that could be responsible.

                1. Dehydration is one thing.

                  Ibuprofen is one.

                  It is hard to figure it out.

                  It is usually B12 and Folate as where you start, but dehydration, prescription meds, ibuprofen, coffee, alcohol, thyroid function, kidney function, Diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis are the types of things I have been reading.

            2. one a relative and one a friend’s son both got in motorcycle accidents the year before last and they both ended up with very long recovery processes.
              ————————————————————-
              An aunt who lost her oldest son in an intersection accident calls them “Murdercycles.”

              1. Lonie,

                When I was young, I thought they were really cool.

                Brain Games had a video on the difference between very young people, tweens and older people in how their brains process and they showed the young people an images of sharks and asked whether it was safe to swim with them and they said, “Not safe” and they showed old people images of sharks and they said, “Not safe” and they showed tweens sharks and they all argued with the logic and gave rationales where those stupid older people didn’t know it was safe.

                Yeah, I have joined the older people generation and I hate them.

                One little mistake and you lose the ones you love.

                They are harder to see for the cars out there and it is too easy to drive them too fast and there is no protection.

                1. I used to love adventure and risk-taking things. Though not the extreme sports way.

                  Even the lower risk ones have risk and the older you get, you use a different set of weights and measures.

                  I have been hot air ballooning and the person flying us had to land us in a tree and slingshot us into a fence, rather than the highway on the other side of the fence.

                  Would I go hot air ballooning again? Yes, but not in this State.

                  I have done hang gliding, but I would not go off of many of the mountains people go off.

                  I remember watching a video and a man was learning how to do it and he crashlanded about 50 times on the bunny hill and the very first time he landed on his feet, he celebrated and said, “Now, I am ready for the mountain.”

                  That is the young brain.

          2. Thyroid is one.

            Are you getting iodine regularly and enough D3 and selenium and zinc and B vitamins?

            Also, I just read that calcium and iron can throw it off, so are you taking any supplements which can throw it off?

                1. Serotonin is another thing, which is linked and can be helped with food and Dr. Greger has a video on that, too.

                  It was interesting reading about it because we know that depression is linked to inflammation, but I had never read that 1/3 of depressed people are deficient in folate to the point of having high homocysteine.

                  Though they said that it might be that high because the study was on inpatients and more severe depression.

                  It is above my head.

                  What I can say is that I am learning enough now that I can understand a lot more of the concepts.

                  But I am still a science newbie and once they put statistics and big language in, it gets above my head fast.

      3. Hello Lida,

        The B12 blood test isn’t the most reliable test and if both are high, it may be worth testing MMA to see if B12 is doing its job within the body. If that comes back normal, then the high homocysteine can be due to another issue such as B9 deficiency. If the issue cannot be resolved with nutrient supplementation, then your doctor can run further tests to help diagnose the issue.

        I hope this helps,
        Dr. Matt, ND

    1. As far as getting the genes tested, I am not going to recommend it because of the study where when people learned bad news about their genes, their hormones got worse.

      Plus, when I was reading the AHA journal it said:

      https://www.ahajournals.org/doi/full/10.1161/01.cir.0000165142.37711.e7

      The MTHFR mutations appear to be medically irrelevant, so long as an individual’s homocysteine level is normal. Therefore, it should be the homocysteine level, not the MTHFR genetic status, that is tested in patients with or at risk for blood clots, atherosclerosis, or pregnancy complications.May 17, 2005

      1. I also found this interesting that Homocysteine and Tumour Necrosis Factor Alpha are things they point to as part of the development of Type 1 Diabetes.

        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15332766

        The role of homocysteine as an independent risk factor for vascular endothelial damage, and the possible link between homocysteine and tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) as two synergistic risk factors for beta-cell apoptosis in type 1 diabetes mellitus was studied. Plasma homocysteine levels were significantly elevated in all diabetic patients compared with controls and diabetic patients with vascular complications showed higher elevations. Furthermore, homocysteine levels showed significant positive correlation with the degree of microalbuminuria. TNF-alpha levels were elevated in all diabetic patients compared with controls. These results may have therapeutic implications.

      1. Lida,

        You are sweet.

        I don’t have YR here telling me that she wouldn’t want to be like me anymore.

        I made a decision today that I am going to try to learn more of the science and not just watch a few science music videos and read PubMed.

        I am going to do Kahn Academy videos next.

        I feel like I am starting to remember more of the vocabulary words, but I need to understand what happens in the body and I feel like if I learn things like that, it might help me be better at not over-commenting.

        https://www.khanacademy.org/test-prep/mcat/biomolecules

        There might be better resources, but free and short enough for me to learn something is required right now.

        1. I am in awe of every doctor who ever lived.

          If they passed tons of classes on all of this information, plus learned all sorts of diseases.

          I am overwhelmed.

          There was a researcher who put up why it is hard to starve cancer and she was showing metabolic pathways and at one point, she showed the big picture, which was so much bigger than the ones I had ever heard of.

          It was like looking at the earth from the moon.

          I don’t know what I am capable of learning, but I feel like this weekend, I started seeing what Dr. Ornish calls the unification theory or something like that. I saw the connections between Autism and Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s and Huntington’s, etc.

          I don’t know if Dr. Ornish will be someone who eventually ties it all together mechanistically, but I feel like my brain wants to do that already and if I actually understood science, I feel like I almost could jump ahead.

        2. “I don’t have YR here telling me that she wouldn’t want to be like me anymore.”
          – – – – – –

          I tried to ignore this comment, but I can’t just let it slip on by. Deb, if I may refresh your memory, a few threads back one of the posters claimed he could tell who was constipated. In his mind, it was everybody. He said we should go after every meal. (He’s writing a book about it.)

          You posted that you “do No. 2” after every meal, and again before you go to bed at night. Many times a day, in other words. The SH*T guy said I should be more like you. I responded that I did NOT want to be more like you — but this meant in the constantly-visiting-the-loo department. Capish? What we have here is a failure to communicate.

          I also once posted, “Deb, you’re a good lady.”

      2. Taurine is another one.

        You shouldn’t need to supplement that but it says that supplementing taurine lowers it, so it is something which you can try.

        1. Lowering homocysteine might make Taurine something to consider.

          I don’t believe it is vegan.

          I wonder if there is anything else which can raise taurine.

  16. I have a question not related to the topic of this video. Which is better, eating 10-15 cups of vegetables a day with 1-1.5 tablespoons of oil and 2 teaspoons of salg, or eating 0-2 cups of vegetables and neither oil nor salt?

  17. Dr. Perlmutter is hosting a video series called: Altzheimers, the Science of Prevention. https://scienceofprevention.com/alz/diabetes-alzheimers/?inf_contact_key=3688cd8ba2ff95bfb92718d6eab31927680f8914173f9191b1c0223e68310bb1
    In it several medical professionals recommend a ketogenic diet for brain health. They recommend Avocado and olive oil, which are part of the MeDi, so you would agree, but also Coconut oil, palm oil and grass fed dairy fat.
    Why is there this conflicting medical advice? You seem to recommend no saturated fat.
    Irene

  18. I would like to add that a cause for dementia may be what happens to elderly patients who cannot eat, drink or sleep for whatever reason. Three reasons i can think of are pneumonia, cholecystitis and sleep apnea. I mean a week or more of little to no sleep, little to no food and little to no water when you’re elderly would likely cause brain damage. The patients leave the hospital as different people. Hospitals do the best they can.

  19. Dear Dr Greger

    I am from England where we probably lag far behind you in the US. Very sadly my 30 year old nephew (who was a professional footballer up until his diagnosis) has been diagnosed with motor neurone disease last August. As a result of his previous fitness the onset has been slow but his voice now is starting to be affected. I have read that research into gut bacteria is being undertaken and as I had read your book a couple of years ago, it made me think that you may have some knowledge or advice on the subject. We would be very grateful to hear from you as the future devastating effects of this cruel disease for such a young individual are heartbreaking.

    Kind regards.

    Janet Codyre
    .

    1. Janet, full disclosure:

      I am not a professional in any branch of the medical profession. I do portray myself as a professional layman in the study of my own health needs and best practices.

      That out of the way, I have previously undergone a treatment of having 7 units (pints) of young blood plasma transfused into my veins. (Here’s a link to the American NIH Director’s Blog)

      https://directorsblog.nih.gov/2017/04/25/aging-research-plasma-protein-revitalizes-the-brain/#more-8243

      Of course in the mice studies they used cord blood plasma rather than just a young person’s plasma (16 to 26 YO) as they did in my treatment. I doubt seriously he could get that treatment through your govt. health care, but if he is adventurous enough and (hopefully) has some of the money he earned as a professional footballer left, maybe a trip to Italy or Germany could be a way to pay for such a treatment.

      I was nowhere near in the shape of your nephew, but I knew I wasn’t operating at my best level. I’ll never stop seeking improvement, but I do feel I have indeed improved in my thinking quite a substantial amount.

      More on how this works. After about the age of 35, proteins in our blood drastically taper off from working properly to allow instructions to be passed on to our ever-present stem cells that tell them to go to our damaged organs and repair them. The young persons’ plasma contain these young proteins that again restore the instruction phase to our stem cells and help to repair our deteriourating organs.

      Just something to think about.

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