Did you know that so-called "incurable" neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease can be slowed, if not also partially reversed? Regeneration, after all, is the default state of the human body.
This may sound all the more surprising when you consider that over 1,000 clinical trials have been performed, and billions of dollars expended, in order find an effective solution, without any significant progress in reversing the underlying trajectory of the condition.[i]
In fact, some of the very same patented chemicals approved by the FDA to "treat" the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, e.g. donepizl (trade name Aricept), are chemically related to insecticides, chemical weapons and venom, and are notorious for greatly increasing the risk of seizures in those to whom they are prescribed.
Back in 2006, a study published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) found that a class of compounds found within turmeric known as curcuminoids enhance the amyloid-beta uptake of macrophages within Alzheimer’s disease patients. Amyloid-beta (Abeta) plaque is found in unnaturally elevated levels in neurodegenerative disorders such as AD, and is believed to contribute to the underlying disease process.[ii]
In the study, researchers treated the macrophages of six AD patients and 3 controls by curcuminoids and measured the Abeta uptake. The results were as follows:
After treatment of macrophages with curcuminoids, Abeta uptake by macrophages of three of the six AD patients was significantly (P<0.001 to 0.081) increased.
Immunomodulation of the innate immune system by curcuminoids might be a safe approach to immune clearance of amyloidosis in AD brain.
While these two studies are amazing, they are not novel. In fact, we have identified 30 studies in total which show the potential value of curcuminoids in Alzheimer’s disease prevention and treatment. These study abstracts can be viewed in full on our Alzheimer's disease page.
Curcumin is, in fact, only one of several natural compounds and/or therapeutic modalities with promising anti-Alzheimer’s activity. Others include:
Coconut Oil (MCTs): Alzheimer’s disease is associated with a pathological decrease in brain glucose, the brain’s principal source of energy. In 2006, a study was published in the journal of Neurobiology of Aging, involving subjects with mild cognitive impairment who were given an oral dose of medium chain triglycerides. When tested 90 minutes later, subjects showed increased cognitive performance, believed to be associated with increased ketone bodies and their brain-metabolism enhancing effects.[iii]
Alpha-Lipoic Acid: A 2007 study published in the Journal of Neural Transmission found alpha-lipoic acid "dramatically lowers" disease progression in Alzheimer’s disease patients who received 600 mg a day for 12 months.[iv]
B-Complex: A 2011 study published in the International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry found B-complex to slow cognitive and clinical decline in people with mild cognitive impairment. The researchers noted that homocysteine is a risk factor for AD and that B vitamins may slow brain atrophy by suppressing homocysteine accumulation. [v]