Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Exercise prevents Alzheimer’s TWO ways....

Today's Post:  Tuesday, 1-15-2013

We already have known that regular exercise, particularly walking, interval cardio, and strength training -- plus taking the omega 3, DHA, prevents brain shrinkage because such exercises cause your body to release BDNF which grows new nerves and brain cells.

So, if some of your brain cells go offline due to the underlying damage that results in beta amyloid build up and that causes Alzheimer’s disease, your total network may still be large enough to not lose performance that much and your body may even replace some of the damaged nerves.

1.  The news!

What if regular exercise prevented the damage too!? 

If it did, people who exercise would show less beta amyloid deposits than people who don’t.

Exercise does lower amyloid build up!

I get an email from Dr David Blyweiss called Advanced Natural Medicine. I recently got one that had this:

"Research finds that adults who are more active and get plenty of exercise have less buildup of beta-amyloid than those who are sedentary.

It even helps people who carry the gene variant (APOE-e4) that puts them at greater risk of Alzheimer's."


(This may be because the damage that causes the beta amyloid that is linked to blood sugar being too high and may be linked to lack of blood supply. 

Regular exercise, particularly vigorous exercise every week, turns down and helps turn off high blood sugar. 

And regular exercise directly turns off one of the main causes of heart disease by reducing your blood levels of small particle LDL.  That, helps your brain cells get better blood flow and get rid of cellular debris.)

2.  We have already posted that taking curcumin supplements daily from the spice turmeric with black pepper has tested to lower the blood levels of tau protein which is now thought to cause the damage and beta amyloid build up AND doing so directly or by lowering inflammation and boosting your immune system helps clear beta amyloid build up. 

(Eating curried foods with turmeric and black pepper also works.  But even people who like curried foods may not want them every day.)

Taking turmeric also lowers LDL cholesterol and inflammation to help keep your blood vessels clear.

3.  There is some evidence also taking 3,000 to 5,000 iu a day of vitamin D3 makes taking turmeric work better.  And, doing so  keeps you healthy in many other ways!

4.  Dr Blyweiss lists other ways to prevent dementia and prevent mental decline in that email that I’ll list and comment on.  (Then I’ll add some other things you can do after that.)

a) “Stimulate your brain. …. Research shows people who do more reading, writing and game playing have less amyloid protein in the brain.” 

Searching the net for information, taking courses of any kind, & getting tutoring also work.

In fact, learning to play a musical instrument or a second or third language seems even more effective.  (Those who do that not only prevent mental decline and build up their brain’s total network, a recent study also found their brain nerves work faster!)

AND, even though it feels easy because you have done it since babyhood, conversing with people takes massive brain power and lights up your brain like a Christmas tree.

One of the reasons that people who socialize regularly have less mental decline is they are better able to deal with stress.  BUT, talking with people gives you far more mental stimulation than you may have known it does.  And that effect may be even more important.

Also, such mentally active people develop larger neural networks that can sustain more damage without causing performance drop off of their brains.

b)  “Supplement with N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) and alpha lipoic acid (ALA).

These two glutathione precursors help reduce oxidative damage caused by excess amyloid beta and tau proteins. They also help remove mercury and other metals that may be affecting your brainpower. I recommend 500 mcg of NAC and 50 mg of R-alpha lipoic acid (the more potent form of ALA).” 

200 mg a day of the less expensive alpha lipoic acid is also helpful.

AND, taking 500 mg a day of NAC has been shown directly to make mental decline less likely!

c)  “Cut down on sugar and carbohydrate intake. Mayo Clinic researchers have found people 70 and older who eat food high in carbohydrates have nearly four times the risk of developing mild cognitive impairment. The danger also rises with a diet heavy in sugar.”

Do even more than he recommends here. 

Eliminate drinking soft drinks both regular and diet. 

Virtually never eat foods made with refined grains.  (That does take some effort since refined grains are in so many breads, buns, snacks, and desserts.)

Even with 100% whole grain foods, eat them less often and/or with health OK oils and protein foods to lower their glycemic impact.

Never eat or drink things that contain high fructose corn syrup.  Don’t use agave or the main artificial sweeteners.

And, cut back dramatically on how much regular sugar you eat.

The average American has been eating or drinking 7 Tablespoons of sugar a day while 3 to 5 a week is pushing your body’s ability to deal with it well!

Doing that AND regular vigorous exercise every week both cuts down on blood vessel damage from type 2 diabetes and inflammation AND prevents circulation drop off by keeping your blood vessels clear and healthy.

It also helps you to be far less fat!!

5.  Cut way down on pro-inflammatory foods.

a) These include ALL the cheap oils made mostly from GMO crops that are high in omega 6 oils.  Soy, corn, safflower, and canola oils are in this group. 

b)  Eat protein foods from natural sources such as wild caught fish, beans and lentils, raw nuts that have not been cooked in oil and salt, and eggs and meat from animals 100 % grass fed or pasture fed only.

c) Or, when eating protein foods from grain fed animals, eat the leanest most fat trimmed meats and poultry from you can and not very often; & use nonfat &/or lowfat dairy.

The grains fed to chickens and cattle etc result in fats with up to twenty times too much omega 6 oils and excess fat and saturated fat AND contain bioconcentrated pesticides and herbicides form the grains!

d)  Eat foods raw or steamed or sautéed at moderate heat with extra virgin olive oil, or boiled, or cooked in a slow cooker.  And avoid eating fried, deep fried, grilled, or other foods, particularly protein foods.  (Do cook meats; but many cruciferous vegetables give you the most cancer prevention when eaten raw.)

Foods cooked at high temperature, both vegetables and meats, it’s recently been found increase your rate of aging and boost inflammation.

e)  Aim for 1500 mg a day but not a lot more of salt.  Salt intake above 2500 mg a day increases inflammation and damages the inside of your blood vessels.

6.  Make sure to take B complex vitamins particularly including vitamin B12.  People who are low in them develop mental decline that can even look like Alzheimer’s disease.

7.  Be sure to include strength training at least twice a week in your exercises even if you are a woman.  Senior citizens who do so develop less mental decline overall and far less decline in their ability to manage and organize things.

The exercise itself with its growth hormone release is important for preventing overall mental decline.

But because strength training involves going through a set of different exercises and counting the repetitions, it also exercises your ability to manage and organize things and does so every week!

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