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Top 10 Ways You Can Avoid Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease
If you have ever known or cared for someone with Alzheimer’s disease, you know what a truly terrible disease this really is. People are robbed of their memory and their lives a piece at a time. They walk around confused and frequently lonely because they always seem to be looking for home, or their spouse, or their children, not knowing that those things are usually right in front of them.
Research has shown that there is a strong connection between a westernized diet and cognitive impairment or the development of dementia. We don’t mean just the everyday brain fart; we are talking about the most common form of dementia, Alzheimer’s disease.
Although researchers don’t know the exact cause or reason why people develop this disease, they do know that there is some kind of connection between certain types of foods, or lack of certain nutrients, and the development of this memory robbing disease.
Lower your risk of this terrible brain disorder by reading the top 10 ways you can help keep your grey matter safe.
1. Avoid Refined Fructose and Sugar
It has been shown in study after study that not only is sugar bad for your health, it feeds the inflammation in the brain. Ideally, you want to keep your total sugar and fructose intake to less than 25 grams each day. In one study that involved lab animals, a junk food diet high in sugar resulted in impaired memory after just 7 days! In this study, place recognition appeared to be particularly affected.
2. Avoid Gluten and Casein
Research shows that the blood brain barrier (which is like a wall that keeps things that might harm your brain outside your brain where they belong) is negatively affected by eating too much gluten. Gluten consumption can also make your gut more permeable, which, over time, can allow protein into your blood where it does not belong. This will then over sensitize your immune system, which will encourage inflammation. Inflammation of the brain is definitely one of the major causes of Alzheimer’s. Casein that is found in pasteurized dairy should also be avoided or limited, but don’t confuse this with healthy dairy fat such as butter.
3. Eat a Diet Rich in Foliates
Dark green vegetables are, by far, the best form of foliates and you should eat as many vegetables as you possibly can each and every day. Avoid foliate supplements such as folic acid, which is actually an inferior, synthetic type of foliate.
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4. Eat More Healthy Fats
Forget that old saying that eating fat will make you fat, that’s hogwash. Your brain needs healthy fats to work properly. Healthy fats include omega-3 fatty acids in fish, organic butter from raw milk, olives, virgin olive oil and coconut oil, avocados, free range eggs, and nuts like pecans and macadamia nuts. Your brain runs best on ketones, not glucose, and medium chain triglycerides that are found in things like coconut oil are a great source of ketones and, therefore, brain food.
5. Avoid and Remove Metals
Heavy metal toxicity plays a role in the development of Alzheimer’s disease. Remove dental fillings that contain metal. You should also avoid using aluminum cookware, aluminum utensils, aluminum cans or storage containers, aluminum drinking bottles, and antiperspirants that contain aluminum chlorohydrate as all of these metals accumulate in the brain.
6. Exercise Regularly
Some studies suggest that regular exercising can set off the changes in metabolization of the amyloid precursor proteins. Doing this would greatly slow down the beginning and progression of Alzheimer’s disease. Get regular exercise, even if it’s just walking for 30 minutes each day 5 or 6 days a week.
7. Avoid Flu Vaccines with Mercury
If your immune system is healthy, you don’t need a flu shot anyway, but if you have certain health problems and your doctor has recommended that you get flu shots, be sure you get one that does not contain mercury. If your doctor doesn’t have one, ask them to get you one or find another place to get your flu shot.
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8. Avoid Statin and Anticholinergic Drugs
If you are taking medication that blocks the nervous system neurotransmitters, you should consult your doctor about the options, because these drugs may cause dementia. The list includes drugs like antihistamines, antidepressants, narcotic pain relievers, sleep aids, and nighttime pain relievers. Talk to your doctor about what is in your medication and what you can take instead.
Statin drugs are viewed to be even worse as they slow down the cholesterol synthesis, which depletes your brain of neurotransmitter precursors and coenzyme Q10. This prevents the delivery of adequate levels of fat-soluble antioxidants and essential fatty acids.
9. Put Your Brain to Work
Mentally stimulating your brain by learning new things, such as a new language or a new musical instrument, has been shown to be linked with a much lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers believe that this works by building up your brain, making it stronger, and therefore, less susceptible to the lesions that are associated with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
10. Get Your Vitamin D
Low blood levels of vitamin D have been linked with Alzheimer’s disease. Besides, scientists believe that vitamin D increases the amount of chemicals in the brain and protects the brain cells. Vitamin D is a natural anti-inflammatory and has immune improving compounds, it is compulsory for the proper functioning of the immune system so that it fights the inflammation that is known to be a major cause of Alzheimer’s. Start by getting just 5 minutes of natural sunlight and then slowly increasing it until you can get 30 to 45 minutes of sunlight daily without burning. If you can’t get enough sunshine due to scheduling or where you live, consider taking about 4,000 IUs of high quality vitamin D supplements. Read also about the link of vitamin D and dementia.