Reducing Risk of Alzheimer’s Disease with Diet and Fish Oils

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Alzheimer’s is an awful, degenerative disease. If no one in your life has ever been affected by it, consider yourself lucky. It has hit pretty close to home for me in the last couple of years; watching someone, once vibrant and loving, turn into a different person is heart-wrenching.

However, there may be some hope in preventing Alzheimer’s disease. A new study in the journal Neurology is reporting that a diet rich in marine derived omega-3 fats and vitamins B, C, D and E dramatically lowered the risk of reduced brain volume, memory loss and risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Certain lifetsyle factors such as education and blood pressure, combined with a healthy diet, lowered the risk of brain shrinkage by almost 40%. Shrinking brain volume is associated with the development of many forms of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease.

Dr. Gene Bowman, from the Departments of Neurology and Public Health and Preventive Medicine at the Oregon Health and Science University, and his team of researchers studied 104 elderly people with the average age of 87. They found that the vitamins and nutrients you get from eating a wide range of fruits, vegetables and fish can be measured in blood biomarkers and have a direct impact on brain shrinkage, memory and cognition. 

According to Dr. Bowman, “It is very exciting to think that people could potentially stop their brains from shrinking and keep them sharp by adjusting their diet…I’m a firm believer these nutrients have strong potential to protect your brain and make it work better.”

These are such simple measures to perhaps prevent such a debilitating disease. Consider supplementing with some of these key nutrients, especially omega-3’s and vitamin D, since many of us lack sufficient quantities in our diet. Contact a nutrition advisor at Village Green Apothecary if you have questions.

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January 2012
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