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Alzheimer's Onset

What Are We Going To Do With Grandpa?

 By Dr. Doughman, PhD and Gene Wolf

 

1) Grandpa does not have Alzheimer’s yet, but like the setting sun, his short-term memory is not what it used to be. Like grandpa, all of us look forward to our golden years. What a tragedy to spend those years in a mental fog.

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2) Because of a John’s Hopkins Health Alert, I’ve started taking appropriate levels of omega-3 DHA (docosahexaenoic acid).According to the Health Alert 1,000 mg/day DHA alone could help prevent up to 70% of Alzheimer’s cases. Now we’re asking everyone we know and we’re asking you: “Are you getting enough DHA each and every day?”

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As we get older we increasingly fear Alzheimer’s…

·When we see family and friends suffer from this disease,

·When we see the impact this disease places on the caregivers,

·Because 90% of Alzheimer’s cases are NOT linked to genetics,

·Because we don’t know exactly what triggers Alzheimer’s,

·Because Alzheimer’s case numbers have doubled in the past 40 years and it’s on track to double again.

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In 1999, the Framingham Study, showed trial subjects with low plasma DHA levels were at greater risk of being diagnosed with dementia. Separate studies indicate patients with dementia have lower brain and plasma DHA levels. Doctors consistently state that diet and lifestyle are the first consideration for dementia and its prevention. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recognizes proper DHA levels are essential for healthy structure and function of the nerve cells in the brain throughout life. Should we consider DHA as a way to help us and to help Grandpa?

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Based on postdoctoral research while at the Department of Nutrition at UNC, I developed our recommended program for Omega-3 DHA Therapy supplementation using DHA produced from golden microalgae oil. This product / therapy is the first optimized DHA product designed for lifelong heart and brain health.

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Golden microalgae oil is superior to fish or krill oil because it is organically pure, and is a more concentrated DHA form of omega-3. That means you need fewer capsules for achieving optimal DHA plasma levels. Fish don’t make omega-3s; in nature the organism that captures sunlight to create DHA is golden microalgae. This patented oil is approved by the FDA and is labeled as safe for infants and pregnant mothers. Plus at high levels, DHA can be more effective for lowering triglycerides or preventing cognitive deficiencies than many drugs.

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Sadly DHA is critically lacking in our American diet. DHA acts as more than just a fatty acid, today it is needed more than ever as one of life’s essential building blocks. Currently this plant-based DHA source is being used in Phase III clinical trials for early dementia onset treatments.The current trials involve 2000 mg/day DHA for 18 months. Early research results are exciting and docosanoid research is just getting started. My recommendations are to mirror this study program today or to take at least 1000 mg/day DHA as a preventative. It’s a safe natural product and finally something that can ease our fears.

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Age related cognitive diseases might be preventable. Consider that only 10% of Alzheimer’s cases are linked to genetics, a condition that causes a variant in a key brain cholesterol transporter. That means at least 9 out of 10 cases may be preventable. Recent studies from the Swedish medical university Karolinska Institutet using dementia markers also seen in people show mice given a high fat, high sugar, and high cholesterol diet for nine months develop preliminary signs of Alzheimer's Disease. Does this mean a fast food diet induces Alzheimer’s? Not conclusively, but what it might say is that additional levels of good fats, omega-3 / DHA is good for protecting physical health. At a minimum, protective fats should be increased and because DHA is 97% of the omega-3s in the brain one should start with DHA.  DHA - The Essential Food For Thought!

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In our country, nutritional supplements are about the only practical way you can achieve optimal DHA plasma levels (6-8%). Although taking fish oils is better than taking nothing, DHA is only a minor part of fish and fish oils. Golden microalgae oil is the best way to get DHA, since the body can use DHA to make the other omega-3 forms as needed. DHA is the only omega-3 you need. It’s a food with no known reactions with medications, there are no side effects, you can’t get too much, and it doesn’t thin the blood. DHA is incorporated and used by every cell in your body. What you don’t need you burn as energy.

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The dietary measures we take today can increase the reserve of DHA for long-term benefits. Can prevention be linked to something as simple as balancing the essential fats in the body with a DHA routine? It may be the best answer to the question: ‘What are we going to do with Grandpa?’

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What else can we do?

·Exercise Both Your Body and Your Brain. It has long been documented that physical exercise can benefit the body, brain, and soul in so many ways. Studies have found that people, who regularly work crossword puzzles and brainteasers like Sudoku, significantly extend the time their brains stay sharp and memory is maintained.

·Be Social. Staying involved in your community, helping others, and generally staying involved in the world around you is shown to be another way to keep your brain sharp and alert.

·Strive to Learn. You should never stop learning and challenging yourself mentally. Every class you take, no matter how old you are, and every new activity or idea you undertake, exercises your brain and increases the chance it will keep working well for many years to come.

Scott Doughman, PhD, researcher and founding member of Source-Omega developed the Omega-3 DHA Therapy™ and the clinical omega-3 microalgae oil product PURE ONE™ the first Optimized Omega-3 containing 300 mg DHA + 10 mg EPA per capsule.PURE ONE™ is available online at www.source-omega.com or at the Great Earth Vitamin Store in Chapel Hill’s Meadowmont Village, call 919-338-8168.


Most Alzheimer's cases are not genetic, only about 10%.  Lifestyle and dietary measures are the number one preventative that could benefit up to 90% of the adult population 30 years of age and over by helping to prevent the beginnings of onset and the continued rate of decline progression.
 
Ms. Shroud, a 61 year old social worker and group newsletter editor in Manitowoc, Wis., used to joke that her husband forgot their 11th anniversary.  She however never forgot important events and dates, especially with a strong memory like hers.  Now ask her about their upcoming 40th wedding anniversary and Ms. Shroud pauses, then looks to her husband to help remember the date.   Alzhiemer's is currently considered a highly preventable disease in many cases.  As we age, our neurons can shorten and lose contacts.   We need to nurture our brain health like our heart health, maintaining constant integrated living strategies that continue to expand our horizons.  We need to teach the proverbial “brain” new tricks.  New learning and experiences may be more important than memory recall skills for exercising the muscle between the ears.

Most of us would be happy just to keep our mental recall from waning with age – a process that seems to start disturbingly early.   If you are over 30, experts say you are on your way and that your memory could be slipping.   Scientists now know that much of the decline in recall of most individuals represents slowing recall, not slipping or memory loss.  

A much better understanding of the underlying mechanisms of brain function with age is helping to prevent both the onset and rate of cognitive decline.  First among these preventive measures is eliminating Omega-3 deficiencies.  This alone may help reduce up to 70% of Alzheimer’s disease onset, according to a Johns Hopkins Health Alert.

Johns Hopkins Health Alert 

Many doctors and researchers are more interested in broad natural prevention efforts as the rate of Alzheimer's cases continues to increase.   Crossword puzzles are good for keeping the crossword puzzle skills sharp, but this does not overlap into other brain functions.   Drugs do not yet offer a solution.   An active, dynamic, low stress, nutrient rich lifestyle is the best solution.  Use it or lose it, is not quite true either.  Re-enriching life with broad experience, while including products like Pure One™, and controlling cholesterol health are important.  Plant sterols versus animal sterols is a huge focus right now.  Pure One™ has 250% more of the Omega-3 DHA than fish oil.

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