Alzheimer’s disease has become an epidemic in the U.S. Are common ordinary foods the real culprit? Neurologist Dr. David Perlmuller, author of the book Grain Brain, believes your diet has major implications for your Alzheimer’s risk. He is also editor in chief of a brand new Harvard-based journal called Brain and Gut. He believes brain dysfunction is rooted in a flawed diet, especially our modern-day high-grain diet. Those diets high in sugar and carbs, along with those low in fat, are devastating to the brain. These diets tend to lead to Alzheimer’s disease.
Research from Mayo Clinic shows diets rich in carbohydrates are associated with an 89% increased risk for dementia while high-fat diets are associated with a 44% reduced risk. Women given cholesterol-lowering statin medication have a 44% increased risk for becoming a type 2 diabetic per a study in the Archives of Internal Medicine.
Is Alzheimers Preventable?
Dr. Perlmutter has the theory that Alzheimer’s is preventable and more importantly, it’s reversible. That is an astounding theory that I would love to believe in.
While a majority of health care officials have warned that saturated fats are bad for you, there’s little doubt this inappropriate fat phobia has had a lot to do with the Alzheimer’s epidemic. Dr. Perlmutter has for a long time been speaking of the benefits of saturated fat and further states that saturated fat is your friend. In elderly individuals, those in the highest level of blood cholesterol have about a 70% risk reduction for becoming demented. These are good for the heart and the immune system. Cholesterol is the precursor of vitamin D, progesterone, estrogen, testosterone and cortisol. All statin drugs are definitely damaging.
A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2013 demonstrated that even mild elevation of blood sugar (105-110) was already dramatically associated with an elevated risk for becoming demented. Fasting blood sugar level should be under 92 and that the ideal level is 70-85 with a maximum of 95. Fat (or ketones) is now called a “brain superfuel” and produced by your body by metabolizing your fat.
Surprisingly, intermittent fasting can really help jumpstart your body into burning fat instead of carbs as its primary fuel. Examples of the right type of fats to eat is as follows:
- Avocados- organic
- Butter (grass-fed organic)
- Raw organic dairy
- Organic pastured egg yolks
- Coconuts and coconut oil
- Unheated organic nut oils
- Raw organic nuts
- Grass-fed organic meats
The human requirement for carbs is zero and well beyond the sources of calories that we take in, food is information.
Aerobic exercise is a powerful epigenetic player. Exercise also reduces free radical production and inflammation. Exercise has been shown to turn on a brain growth hormone called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (DFNF). Your brain can both regrow neurons and even rewire itself to “work around” the damaged areas. Recommendations are tumeric, monitoring your Vitamin D level, optimizing your gut health, measuring your gluten sensitivity and fecal transplantation. A brain healthy diet will benefit Parkinson’s disease, Migraines, Seizure disorders, Autoimmune disorders and Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
Take control of your health by how and what you eat. Your priority should always be to search for those organic products and follow the recommendations for exercise. Let’s all take back the control of our lives to strive for happier, healthier futures.
Dr Fredda Branyon