Supplements That Can Aid the War Against Alzheimer’s and Dementia

Supplements That Can Aid the War Against Alzheimer’s and Dementia

Published by Wonder Laboratories on Nov 30th 2023

November is recognized as Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month, but even though we are now headed into December, it’s never too late to talk about this insidious disease which affects so many people, not just those with the disease, but loved ones facing the task of caring for them. In consideration of this, we discuss some of the lifestyle factors which can help prevent, or precipitate, an Alzheimer’s diagnosis. Then, we will look at some supplements that science has shown having the potential to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

Health Factors and Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s Disease is a progressive brain disease most common in people over 65. There is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, but there are medical treatments which can slow the progression of the disease.

The onset of Alzheimer’s is often predated by mild cognitive impairment (MCI), or dementia, usually characterized by difficulty remembering newly-learned information. The average lifespan of an individual who has received an Alzheimer’s diagnosis is another 4-8 years. As Alzheimer’s progresses, further symptoms include disorientation, deepening confusion over places and events, behavioral and mood changes, and worsening memory loss.

The physiological causes of dementia and Alzheimer’s has to do with the breakdown of brain cells. The two foremost mechanisms of breakdown are the buildup of beta-amyloid proteins between nerve cells and the tangling of tau proteins within cells.

Certain lifestyle habits can help reduce the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s. These include:

  • Supporting your heart health by mitigating obesity and high blood pressure
  • Eat a healthy diet low in fat and high in fruits and vegetables, e.g. the Mediterranean diet
  • Stay socially engaged all your life, and engage in meaningful activity with others
  • Engage in regular physical exercise, to encourage blood flow to the brain

Supplements to Reduce the Risk of Alzheimer’s and Dementia

The intake of various vitamins, nutrients, and herbs could benefit the body in ways which reduce the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease. Here are some of the supplements which are most likely to do just that.

Vitamins C & E are two crucial vitamins that, when taken together, could reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s. Multiple studies have examined the relationship between these vitamins and Alzheimer’s. One large study with more than 4,000 participants conclusively found that supplementing with both vitamins C and E together reduced the prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease, as well as a reduced incidence of new cases. These vitamins are helpful because of their combined antioxidant effect, which helps preserve the health of cellular membranes and organelles.

Vitamin D supplementation is potentially helpful for preventing Alzheimer’s disease, merely on account of the fact that vitamin D deficiency is often linked to the disease. Supplementing with vitamin D could be a worthy addition to other measures to prevent the disease.

Resveratrol is an antioxidant present naturally in some foods, and extracted and often made available in the form of an oral supplement. Scientists have long believed that resveratrol can benefit the brain such that it reduces risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Recent research shows that taking resveratrol does slow the progression of Alzheimer’s in those who already have it.

Omega-3 fatty acids, namely DHA and EPA (the most common omega-3s in supplements), are linked to a potentially reduced risk of dementia and cognitive decline. DHA is the most prominent omega-3 fatty acid in the brain, found in the fatty membranes between nerve cells. These fatty acids can help protect nerve cell membranes, as well as reduce inflammation.

Phosphatidylserine is a lipid and part of what constitutes the membranes surrounding nerve cells. There is some scientific evidence supporting the notion that taking phosphatidylserine in supplement form can protect brain cells from degeneration. Soy-derived phosphatidylserinecould help reduce the risk of dementia and cognitive decline in the elderly.

If you or a family member are at risk for dementia and conceivably Alzheimer’s disease, then you should consider how these supplements could help prevent it. Talk to your healthcare provider before taking one of these supplements.

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