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Cognition: Whom Do We Believe?

From eNewsletter August 17, 2020

DID YOU KNOW that when analyzing foods ranked by kilogram of carbon dioxide emissions, scientists were surprised that turkey, chicken, tomatoes, and broccoli emitted the same amount? Conventional lamb and beef were first and second, but as you can tell, the issue of carbon emissions from food is extremely complicated. STAYING SAFE AMIDST A PANDEMIC

Continue with extra immune support until summer of 2021. SARS-CoV-2 knows no boundaries and does not discriminate. Besides, SARS-CoV-2 is not the only virus we fight. There is influenza (flu), norovirus (stomach flu), adenovirus (common cold), and four other coronaviruses (common cold), among others. Prevent and Fight Coronavirus 2.0 is our must-read protocol.


COGNITION: WHOM DO WE BELIEVE?

Steve and Bonnie: Recent data for cognitive disorders have been all over the map.


For example, the number of commercially insured Americans aged 30 to 64 years who were diagnosed with early-onset dementia or Alzheimer disease jumped 200% from 2013 to 2017, according to a new report from the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Dementia diagnosis rates increased 373% among adults aged 30 to 44 and 311% among those aged 45 to 54 years.


Another example: American baby boomers scored lower on a test of cognitive functioning than did members of previous generations, according to a new study from Journals of Gerontology: Social Sciences.


Yet, how can this be when a study in Neurology, examining changes in the incidence of dementia in a huge population dataset from Europe and North America between 1988 and 2015, found a 13% decline per decade over the past 25 years.


Until there is a consensus, here are what research-backed paradigms we think you should follow to assure you are doing what is necessary preventively. Many of the results of the following research were tabulated and decades-long tracking.


Carotenoids

Higher intake of total carotenoids (red, orange fruit and vegetables) was associated with substantially lower odds of moderate or poor cognitive function after controlling for other dietary and nondietary risk factors and total energy intake over a 28-year period. Beta carotene, alpha carotene, lycopene, and lutein + zeaxanthin all had a positive association, according to The Journal of Nutrition study.


Early Life Choices Impact Cognition

A study and editorial in JAMA Neurology waxed poetic about the association of early-life cognitive enrichment from positive diet and lifestyle choices with lower risk of Alzheimer Disease and cognitive decline. The study was performed locally at Rush University. Part of the headline of the editorial discussed "An Opportunity to Transform the Therapeutic Landscape Through Transdisciplinary Collaboration." Whoah, could the allopathic world be extending an olive branch to the integrative world? Let's hope so because we agree that optimal lifestyle choices at a young age is paramount for beneficial cognition later.


Exercise

Researchers in Journal of Alzheimer's Disease have mapped brain changes after one year of aerobic workouts and uncovered a potentially critical process: exercise boosts blood flow into two key regions of the brain associated with memory. Notably, the study showed this blood flow can help even older people with memory issues improve cognition.


Flavonoids

According to a study in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, long-term dietary flavonoid intake lowers the risk of Alzheimer disease and related dementias. Participants were free of cognitive disorders at the start of the study and were analyzed 20 years later. Those with the highest intakes of flavonols, anthocyanins, and flavonoids had a lower risk of cognitive disorders relative to individuals with the lowest intakes. A great reason to consume fruit, veggies, and targeted grains and flavonoid supplements.


Lithium

Researchers in Journal of Alzheimer's Disease have shown that, when given in a formulation that facilitates passage to the brain, lithium in doses up to 400 times lower than what is currently being prescribed for mood disorders, is capable of both halting signs of advanced Alzheimer's pathology, such as amyloid plaques and of recovering lost cognitive abilities. We can tell you from your Pure Genomics screening if you could benefit from lithium microdosing.


Cognitive Risk Factors

Modifying 12 risk factors over a lifetime could delay or prevent 40% of dementia cases, according to an updated report by the Lancet Commission on dementia prevention, intervention and care presented at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference 2020.


Twenty-eight world-leading dementia experts added three new risk factors in the new report: excessive alcohol intake and head injury in mid-life and air pollution in later life. These are in addition to nine factors previously identified by the commission in 2017: less education early in life; mid-life hearing loss, hypertension and obesity; and smoking, depression, social isolation, physical inactivity and diabetes later in life (65 and up).


Weight

As a person's weight goes up, all regions of the brain go down in activity and blood flow, according to a new brain imaging study in Journal of Alzheimer's Disease. According to the authors, this seriously impacts brain activity for many other psychiatric and cognitive conditions as well.


HIGH SCHOOL PERSONALITY AND DEMENTIA RISK

This article is reserved for NCI Well Connect Members. You can get this article by signing up here. You can get our free eNewsletter by signing up at the top of our website.

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