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Food and Alzheimer’s prevention

What we eat every day is a main source of health, and our natural disease killer.

The best way known to prevent Alzheimer’s and other brain diseases is to have a healthy lifestyle. It includes great nutrition (with nutrient-dense foods- high in minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants, low in sugar and toxins); regular aerobic exercise (especially when you enjoy it); good sleep (in a routine and truly restful); and being happy (doing what you love, building healthy relationships, and managing stress).
It is essential to be aware that lifestyle is constant, habitual, and built throughout our lives. Thus, start with one of its areas and improve – you will definitely see results with consistency.
On this post the main goal is to share information about how to use food in our favor. As the father of medicine Hippocrates said once: “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” Today, learn about some foods that are great for the body and for the mind. These are exceptional foods, great for Alzheimer’s disease prevention but also for overall health.

 

 

The Brain Foods

1.Blueberries

The anthocyanins and flavonoids found in blueberries are polyphenols that act as powerful, natural antioxidants and anti-inflammatories, so they help protect the entire body from free radicals and inflammation. Studies have shown that diets rich in blueberries significantly improved both the learning capacity and motor skills of aging rats, making them mentally equivalent to much younger rats. It is not fully understood how these plant nutrients affect the brain, but it is likely that the polyphenols improve nerve connections and stimulate cell repair. Make sure you implement your diet with some blueberries.

 

2. Wild Salmon

This and other deep water fish (mackerel, sardines) are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, which are an essential part of brain structure and function. This fatty acid can lower blood levels of beta-amyloid, a protein related to Alzheimer’s. A Columbia University study found that the more Omega-3 fatty acids a person eats, the lower their blood beta-amyloid levels. The recommended is about 8oz per week.

 

3. Nuts and Seeds

There are so many different options of flavors,presentation and ways to use these amazing foods that no one can get bored! Walnuts, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, Brazil nuts, filberts, almonds, cashews, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, hemp seeds, flax seed, as well as nut butters (without sugar) and tahini. Almonds and Hazelnuts are two of the most concentrated sources of vitamin E available, and vitamin E intake is generally associated with less age-related cognitive decline. Walnuts are the top nut for brain health. They have a significantly high concentration of DHA, a type of Omega-3, which has been shown to protect brain health in newborns, improve cognitive performance in adults, and prevent or ameliorate age-related cognitive decline. DHA is also related to neurogenesis, the regeneration of neurons.

 

4. Avocado

Healthy unsaturated fats in avocados help keep your brain cell membranes flexible, according to Kansas State University. A study published in the October 2012 issue of the “Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology” found that monounsaturated fatty acids helped protect nerve cells in the brain known as astrocytes, which provide support to information-carrying nerves. Its monounsaturated fats also help in lowering the blood pressure, associated with brain health. Enjoy it in your guacamole, a green avocado smoothie or as a side.

 

5. Spinach, Kale, and other Leafy Greens

Full of antioxidants and fibers. The antioxidants protect your cells against free radical damage, either the naturally produced in our bodies or the one obtained from external stresses. Fibers are essential for the gut microbiome health (known to influence in all processes of the body), and they help in maintaining blood sugar levels, strongly related to brain diseases. There are many creative ways of including these great vegetables in your diet, and they do taste delicious!

 

 

6. Cocoa or Dark Chocolate

Research already shows that the cocoa in dark chocolate, which contains flavonoids (a plant compound that helps with the body’s circulation), can help combat heart disease. Also, flavonoids may help slow down the effects of dementia. Its is known to have powerful antioxidant properties, and it stimulates the production of endorphins, which helps improve mood. Always prefer chocolate 70% or more in cocoa. Enjoy with moderation for anything that has sugar or just freely enjoy it in unsweetened recipes!

 

Implementing good foods not just as part of a diet, but as part of a routine and leisure is the key to the healthy lifestyle we all look for. Start with small steps and build the best version of yourself!

 

Resources

Web MD 

Huffpost

BrainHQ

SFGate

Posted in: Alzheimer’s, Health, Nutrition, Uncategorized

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Dr. Perlmutter’s Life Plan for Health and Disease Prevention

The Neurologist and New York Times Best Selling Author, Dr. David Perlmutter presents his 35-year long research findings about how to prevent major diseases, such as Alzheimer’s, depression and cancer, generally a result of wrong widespread concepts.
He explains how basic lifestyle changes play a major role in adapting the human body to its natural health and potential.  Learn how a low-carb, high-fat diet coupled with aerobic exercise and hormone balance can give you optimum health and longevity.

Below is part of the article The Grain Brain Whole Life Plan With Dr. David Perlmutter posted by Lauren Bryant at the Wellness Force website (wellnessforce.com), accessed in May 1, 2017.

THE GRAIN BRAIN WHOLE LIFE PLAN WITH DR. DAVID PERLMUTTER

  • The Grain Brain Whole Life Plan With Dr. David Perlmutter Wellness Force Radio

 

“Our dietary choices play a major role in determining whether we are going to live into our 80s and 90s and even beyond with a good, functioning brain, or like 50% of people who live to be age 85, we will experience brain decline in the form of Alzheimer’s which is a preventable disease.”- Dr. David Perlmutter

 

When we think about brain health, we don’t think that our gut has anything to do with it. However, the fact is that the gut and free radicals have everything to do with how our brains function as we grow older.

Neurologist and New York Times Best Selling Author, Dr. David Perlmutter has witnessed the damaging effects that a poor diet can have on our brains. Today is perfect timing with the launch of his new book, The Grain Brain Whole Life Plan, as he shares why we are vulnerable to develop brain degenerative disease and how we can take matters into our own hands in order to live long, healthy lives with a bright mind that is free of illness.

 

MAKE THE CHOICE TO HAVE A HEALTHY BRAIN

Even if a relative of yours was diagnosed with a brain degenerative disease such as Alzheimer’s, you have the amazing opportunity to make lifestyle choices to ensure your brain’s health.

Factors such as sleep, nutrition, stress levels, free radicals and exercise can impact your health, but you can also take advantage of them to improve your wellness and lower the chances of brain decline.

 

CONNECTING WELLNESS AND GUT HEALTH

 

“It’s a bit humbling to recognize that mood is regulated by our gut. Not only through the process of controlling inflammation, which is a cornerstone player in depression, but that around 90% of our levels of dopamine and serotonin are not manufactured in the brain. They’re mostly manufactured in the gut.” – Dr. David Perlmutter

 

Approximately 90% of the human body’s total serotonin is located in the GI tract, where it is used to regulate intestinal movements.

If the gut is leaky and we lack serotonin, it can be linked to feelings of depression. In a study with probiotic yogurt, researchers found a dramatic change in brain function and mood in the test subjects that ate the yogurt compared to those who did not.

 

BUILD A HEALTHY GUT

At this moment, there is a diverse community of healthy, gut bacteria living inside of us. If any harm comes our gut’s way, it can increase the chances of having a leaky gut. This leaky gut can lead to inflammation and degenerative diseases including:

  • Alzheimer’s
  • Parkinson’s
  • Diabetes
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Cancer

The right way to eat food, is to focus on following a diet that helps reduce the chance of a leaky gut and inflammation from happening inside the body.

 

DO YOU HAVE A LEAKY GUT?

In today’s world, we should assume that it is likely that we all have somewhat of a leaky gut. We would have to take a test or participate in a study to know for sure by having an LPS level done in a lab.

There’s a higher chance that you have a leaky gut if you have an inflammatory condition such as:

  • Depression
  • Early onset Parkinson’s
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Joint issues
  • Skin inflammation
  • Autism

What can you do to heal your leaky gut?

To help heal your gut, remove any offensive agents that may be harming it such as any overuse of:

  • Antibiotics
  • GMOs
  • Over production of free radicals
  • Drinking chlorinated water
  • Artificial sugars and sweeteners
  • Acid blocking drugs
    • Proton pump inhibitors
    • Non-steroid and anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Stress

To heal our gut, we need to stimulate and increase the diversity of the organisms that live inside of the gut by exercising and eating foods that are rich in pre-biotic fiber that helps nurture our gut bacteria:

  • Mexican yam/ jicamo
  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Leek
  • Dandelion greens
  • Kimchi
  • Kobucha
  • Yogurt
  • Fermented vegetables

 

THE TRUTH ABOUT SUGAR AND GLUTEN

 

“Inflammation caused by sugar consumption can lead to diabetes and quadruples your chances for Alzheimer’s Disease.” – Dr. David Perlmutter

 

For decades, we’ve been told that gluten and sugar is good for our health and that fat is bad. However, recent research has shown that this is the exact opposite.

Healthy fat is good for both the body and brain function, but gluten and sugar (including artificial sugar and sweeteners) can cause our insulin levels to spike which leads to inflammation in the body.

In fact, according to Dr. Perlmutter, artificial sweeteners were created to help people control the amount of sugars in their diet, but still be able to taste something sweet. Unfortunately, artificial sugars and sweeteners can dramatically increase a person’s risk for obesity and diabetes.

Take your health into your own hands by making good choices and eating foods that minimize free radicals. Eat healthy and avoid any sugary drinks, high gluten foods, and anything labeled “sugar free” or “contains artificial sugars.”

 

THE BEST SOURCES OF HEALTHY FAT

There’s a lot of taboo hanging around the words, “fat” and “fatty food.” However, healthy sources of fat are great for our bodies and important for our brain’s health.

According to Dr. Perlmutter, the brain is already made up of a lot of saturated fat and even human breast milk is 50% saturated fat. If you want to ensure that you follow a healthy diet, use the Ketogenic and Mediterranean diets as a good model to follow.

The best sources of healthy fats include:

  • Extra virgin olive oil (organic)
  • Fatty fish with DHA
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Avocado
  • Grass-fed and free-range meat

Olive oil particularly is good source of polyphenols that act as antioxidants and nurture the gut bacteria. This source of healthy fat provides both mono and unsaturated fats for our brain cell building blacks.

When you follow a Ketogenic or Mediterranean based diet, but add extra amounts of olive or cocnut oil, your cognitive function can improve dramatically.

 

A DIET TO HELP PREVENT ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE

To better understand your body and gene makeup, there are numerous services available from companies that offer biometrics tests including:

The sooner you better understand your genes and if there is a chance for you to have an inflammatory disease, the sooner you can take action to fight against it.

Depending on our dietary fat composition, there is a risk of dementia or Alzheimer’s Disease, but it can be handled by following a diet that includes food that is high in healthy fats.

As mentioned before, we should be eating more nuts, seeds, olive oil, and avocado. Monosaturated fats such as almond oil, almond butter/nut butter, an oleic acid in sunflower oil can help prevent degenerative brain disease.

However, we should avoid canola oil, vegetable oil, corn oil and other modified oils in our diets. These are the unhealthy oils that can lead to excess free radicals, and harm our body and brain function.

 

BUILD A HEALTHY BRAIN WITH AEROBICS

If you want to build a healthy brain, change your diet, but also increase the amount of aerobic exercise. Working out helps to turn on BDNF (Brain-derived neurotrophic factor) which serves as a growth hormone for the brain and helps increase the number of memory cells throughout our lifetime.

People who exercise regularly can reduce their chances for Alzheimer’s Disease by 50%!

One of the best things you can do to help your brain stay healthy is to include aerobic exercise for 20 minutes every day.

 

6 KEY FACTORS FOR A WHOLE LIFE PLAN

According to Dr. Perlmutter, there are 6 key factors and goals that take place in creating a whole life plan for a healthy brain and gut:

  • Reducing and controlling inflammation
  • Turning the body into a fat burning machine
  • Balancing levels of bacteria
  • Balancing hormones and increasing leptin sensitivity
  • Taking care of our genes
  • Balancing our life

ABOUT DR. DAVID PERLMUTTER

Dr. Perlmuter is a Neurologist and Fellow of the American College of Nutrition who received his M.D. degree from the University of Miami School of Medicine where he was awarded the Leonard G. Rowntree Research Award.

He is the author of: The Better Brain Book and the #1 New York Times Bestseller, Grain Brain, and Brain Maker, also a New York Times best seller. He is recognized internationally as a leader in the field of nutritional influences in neurological disorders.

Over the past 35 years, Dr. Perlmutter has been interviewed on many nationally syndicated radio and television programs including 20/20, Larry King Live, CNN, Fox News, Fox and Friends, The Today Show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, Like with Kelly and Michael, Montel Across America and The CBS Early Show.

The cornerstone of Dr. Perlmutter’s unique approach to neurological disorders is founded in the principles of preventive medicine. He has brought to the public awareness a rich understanding that challenging brain problems including Alzheimer’s disease, other forms of dementia, depression, and ADHD may very well be prevented with lifestyle changes including a gluten free, low carbohydrate, higher fat diet coupled with aerobic exercise.

 

Posted in: Alzheimer’s, Health

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Be Heart and Brain Smart! Month of Heart Health Awareness

February is Heart Health Awareness Month!  The American Heart Association recommends that you adopt a long-term, heart-healthy “food lifestyle” and exercise.  Bonus time, once you do that, you have a double win, because these same foods will support a healthy brain.  Yes, the two are connected!  Simple smart food choices will reduce your risks for strokes and other diseases.  Strokes develop because of compromised blood flow to the brain (by a clot or hemorrhage) and despite the severity they are linked to dementia.  Brain autopsy studies on deceased individuals with dementia found microvascular infarcts, either alone or along with the plagues and tangles, such as those associated with Alzheimer’s.   With the facts on the table, it’s clear that the best defense against heart and brain disease are healthy food choices and exercise.  What are the healthiest food choices? Well, the first choice for many is the “Mediterranean diet,” but what is it really?   Let’s look at the basics.

  • Eat Mainly:Vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes, potatoes, whole grains, breads, herbs, spices, fish, seafood and extra virgin olive oil.
  • Eat in Moderation:Poultry, eggs, cheese and yogurt.
  • Eat Only Rarely:Red meat.
  • Don’t Eat:Sugar-sweetened beverages, added sugars, processed meat, refined grains, refined oils and other highly processed foods

What about exercise and its role in a healthy heart and your brain?  For starters, research backs the mind and body connection.  It appears that exercise benefits one’s cognition (reasoning and perception), particularly in areas of executive functioning, associated with improvements in attention, working memory and the ability to multitask.  So, what happens to the brain when we work out?  First, exercise triggers the production of a protein called “brain-derived neurotrophic factor” or BDNF.  This protein helps support the growth of existing brain cells and the development of new ones!  As we age, the BDNF levels decline, exercise regardless of age, increases the BNDF process.  In addition to this, blood flow which carries oxygen and feeds neural tissues, increase in brain.  So the best advice for living to a healthy old age is to eat healthy and exercise.  The good news, is that you can begin a healthy lifestyle today by making smart and healthy food choices and adding exercise to your daily routine.    Stay tune – next month is Nutrition Awareness Month, and we have tons of tips to keep you healthy – and change your life!

Posted in: Alzheimer’s

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Alzheimer’s is not just memory loss, Alzheimer’s kills

Local Alzheimer’s disease expert returns from the 30th International Alzheimer’s Conference in Perth, Australia with startling statisticsMary Demakes, Registered Nurse and President of Private Home Health Care, Inc. attended the annual conference with more than 1,500 delegates from over 60 countries.

Alzheimer’s is not just memory loss, Alzheimer’s kills.  It is the 6th leading cause of death in the US for those 65 and older.  It is the only cause of death in the top 10 in American that cannot be prevented, cured or slowed.  Today, “5.3 million American’s are living with Alzheimer’s disease including an estimated 200,000 under the age of 65.  Growth estimates suggest that by 2050, up to 16 million will have the disease,” said Mary Demakes.  “Nearly two-thirds of those with Alzheimer’s disease 3.2 million are women.   Specifically, every 67 seconds in the US, someone gets diagnosed with the disease and 1 in 3 seniors dies with Alzheimer’s or another dementia.   Yet, only 45% of the people with Alzheimer’s or their caregivers report being told they have the disease” added Demakes.   The growing Alzheimer’s crisis is helping to bankrupt Medicare with direct costs of caring for those with the disease, at an estimated $226 billion, of which Medicare bares half.

Current research offer some promise to those afflicted with the disease by providing tools to diagnose Alzheimer’s in its earliest stages.  Structural imaging studies show that the brains of those with the disease shrink significantly.  Functional imaging research suggests those with the disease have reduced brain cell activity in certain regions. Neuroimaging is among the most promising areas of research focused on early detection. Molecular strategies aim to detect biological clues prior to the disease taking a toll on the “brain structure, function memory, thinking and reasoning” www.alz.org/facts.  Current imaging technologies provide researchers with the tools for early detection, better monitoring, and a better understanding of the disease — which will in time lead to a cure.

To help combat the disease, join Private Home Health Care in sharing your story on “Why Your Brain Matters” with Maria Shiver’s “Wipe Out Alzheimer’s Challenge” at https://mybrain.alz.org/you.aspx.

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