Archive for November, 2014
This delicious food has a hard protective shell – much the way the brain has a skull. Its ‘meat’ is divided into two halves – the brain has two hemispheres. It’s covered in furrows – the brain is also covered in furrows. It contains approximately 68% beneficial fat – the brain contains about the same amount of fat.
Does it follow that this food will be good for your brain? It sounds unscientific, but reasoning by analogy actually has a respectable medical history. And it turns out, sometimes it’s on target. It sure is when it comes to this food. . .
Announcing a New Special Report
from the Publisher of Cancer Defeated
How Joe Healed His Osteoarthritis
and Canceled His Double Knee Replacement
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If you or someone you love suffers from chronic joint pain, then you know relief never comes fast enough or stays as long as you hoped. And often it never comes at all. Day-after-day pain is not just an inconvenience. It gets in the way of everything you want to do in life.
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You may have guessed I’m talking about walnuts.
Ancient scholars believed a walnut looked like the brain so it must be good for the brain. Modern science confirms they were right, although their reasoning gives a modern scientist fits.
Walnuts are now considered an important food for maintaining cognitive health — and may even protect against Alzheimer’s (they definitely protect against cancer, but I digress).
Brain Benefits in Animal Research
A recent study found that mice genetically susceptible to Alzheimer’s showed significant improvement in learning when given a walnut-enriched diet for nine months. They also experienced improvement in memory and motor skills as well as a reduction in anxiety compared to control mice that weren’t fed walnuts.
Lead researcher Dr. Abha Chauhan said, “These findings are very promising and … add to the growing body of research that demonstrates the protective effects of walnuts on cognitive functioning.”
This study was a follow-up to previous research by the same team that found walnuts protect against free radical oxidative damage caused by toxic amyloid beta proteins that are implicated in dementia. The earlier study concluded that a walnut rich-diet would reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
Other animal research suggest walnuts improve balance and coordination and are associated with substantially reducing an enzyme called acetylcholinesterase that highly damages brain function. This enzyme is found at higher levels in people with Alzheimer’s.
Brain Benefits in Human Research
Most human research has focused on the walnut’s benefits to the cardiovascular system. However, these in themselves are also advantageous to the brain, because heart disease increases the risk of cerebrovascular disease, stroke and mild cognitive impairment.
One study examined the cognitive benefits among 447 men and women aged 55 – 80 who were at high cardiovascular risk. Looking at a number of food components common to a Mediterranean diet, the researchers found that walnuts were associated with better working memory. Other nuts did not have the same benefit.
Other studies have confirmed that upping your nut intake in general — and walnuts in particular — will improve your processing speed, memory, cognitive flexibility and function.
Walnuts Have Multiple Beneficial Ingredients
Researchers speculate that the benefits of walnuts come from multiple factors. They are rich in components that contain antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. These protect against neuron damage and death.
Out of a list of 1,100 foods with antioxidant properties, walnuts ranked 2nd. Only blackberries packed a bigger antioxidant punch.
Walnuts are also excellent sources of polyunsaturated fatty acids that are highly beneficial to the function and health of the brain.
Walnuts also contain vitamin E, folic acid, melatonin, polyphenols, flavonoids and a number of other brain-healthy components.
A recent review of the role of walnuts in maintaining brain health concluded, “Taken together this evidence suggests that the integration of walnuts into a healthy diet could be an effective means of prolonging health spans, slowing the processes of brain aging and reducing the risk of chronic neurodegenerative disease.”
The good news is that the brain-healthy rewards of eating walnuts come from only eating a handful a day. Research suggests eating just 6 or 7 will give you tremendous brain as well as cardiovascular benefits. Eating more won’t necessarily be any better for you.
This must be one of the simplest, easiest and tastiest ways to keep your brain functioning at its best.
Lee Euler, Publisher
If you’ve ever lived in an old house where you flip a light switch and nothing happens, or light fixtures flicker off and on unpredictably, then you know how frustrating it can be to deal with old, bad wiring.
As you age, your brain can be just as frustrating.
Much of your ability to remember important facts and maintain your daily activities depends on the connections between your brain’s neurons. Keeping with the electric analogy, if the gaps are too wide or the signals too weak, the connections fail.
And when your neural network weakens, so does your thinking and memory. Here’s what to do when the sparks aren’t quite making the leap from one contact to the next. . .
Google listed “Paleo” as the most-searched diet of 2013 and I couldn’t be happier.
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To Your Good Health,
Al Sears, MD
Challenging mental tasks can encourage the brain to maintain its neural networks and even make them stronger and more complex. And if you’re willing to make the commitment, you can begin developing better brain circuits today for a better memory tomorrow.
The Language Connection
While you may have seen or heard advertisements by companies offering brain games and exercises that are supposed to help your brain stay young, research has demonstrated one particular intellectual exercise that improves your brain’s structure and function.
Learn a new language.
A study at Penn State shows that mastering a foreign tongue strengthens the connections in your brain.i
“Learning and practicing something, for instance a second language, strengthens the brain,” says researcher Ping Li, who teaches psychology, linguistics, information sciences and technology. “Like physical exercise, the more you use specific areas of your brain, the more it grows and gets stronger.”
The Penn State study involved 39 people whose only language at the start of the project was English. Over the course of six weeks, about half of these people studied Chinese. The ones who were most adept at Chinese after a month and a half possessed a brain network that displayed more robust connectivity than the people who didn’t study a language or who were less proficient in their new Chinese vocabulary.
The researchers measured the strength and direction of the connections they found in the people’s brains using fMRI scans – functional magnetic resonance imaging. This type of scan reveals changes in how oxygenated blood flows in relation to the activity of the brain’s neurons.
The scans showed that the people who were learning Chinese experienced better-functioning brains.
“A very interesting finding is that, contrary to previous studies, the brain is much more plastic than we thought,” says Li. “We can still see anatomical changes in the brain [in the elderly], which is very encouraging news for aging. And learning a new language can help lead to more graceful aging.”
Aside from learning a smattering of Chinese, you can also strengthen your brain by learning to multitask, according to researchers at the University of Montreal.ii
In this study, the scientists found the best way to train your brain was by “modulating” your attention – paying more attention to one task and just a little to another before altering your focus. Don’t merely try to pay equal attention to two tasks simultaneously.
In other words, the researchers report, first you can devote about 80 percent of your mental attention to one job and 20 percent to another. Then you modulate by switching most of your attention to the second task and reducing the attention you pay to the first one.
Research into these kinds of exercises demonstrates that your brain can be reformed and rewired in a physical, measurable way. You shouldn’t passively accept that your mental abilities are fixed. You can improve, strengthen and mold your brain. If you give that a try, you can avoid short circuits and keep your memory shining bright.
Lee Euler, Publisher
In Texas it’s illegal to possess, sell, transport or cultivate it. In Colorado it’s legal to do all these things (with restrictions). Where you live determines whether you can legally use this substance.
Whether you should do so is something to consider because its active chemicals are said to be potent brain antioxidants and anti-inflammatories. They are also reported, by some experts, to promote the growth of new neurons, improve memory and learning, and slow brain aging. Some researchers believe active ingredients in this plant could prevent or treat Alzheimer’s disease.
On the other hand, there’s a wealth of conflicting evidence. It might damage your memory and cause depression or schizophrenia. It all depends….
The Ancient Memory-Boosting
Secret of Chinese Emperors
A note from Lee Euler
Our best-selling book Awakening from Alzheimer’s featured an ancient Chinese secret for boosting memory. Now I’m happy to tell you we have a recommended source for this supplement if you wish to try it.
I’ve been taking it myself, and I can feel the results. I’m thinking faster and more clearly than I have in years. This is definitely not one of the supplements where you take it and “nothing happens.”
So, what is this stuff? In ancient China, the emperor was believed to be the son of heaven. One of the perks of the job was that he was the only one allowed to eat a certain medicinal mushroom that was said to give him “nerves of steel and the memory of a lion.”
Now modern science has confirmed this mushroom’s remarkable benefits. If you’d like to reap the benefits for yourself click here now…
As you may have guessed already, the plant I’m talking about is marijuana (cannabis).
Well, you have to admit it’s a natural treatment. . .
Cannabinoids are a class of chemicals found in marijuana that activate cannabinoid receptors in various organs of the body, but mainly in the brain. These receptors regulate various processes including memory, mood and pain sensation – brain functions that are activated by internal body processes, but – it turns out — can also be turned on externally.
Among the substances that can turn on these receptors are certain cannabinoids. There are over 60 such compounds in marijuana.
It’s important to note that not all cannabinoids are intoxicating. In fact, most of them aren’t, including some of those that appear to have the greatest medicinal power. These are being extracted to treat cancer successfully, and likewise may turn out to be potent treatments for dementia, too.
Cannabinoids Protect Against Inflammation
Researchers in Spain compared brain tissue from people who had died with Alzheimer’s disease with people who did not suffer from dementia but had died at a similar age. The investigators found the functioning of cannabinoid receptors was dramatically reduced in the diseased tissue. These patients would have lost the cannabinoids’ protective properties.
In rodents injected with beta amyloid proteins – the sticky brain tangles that are the hallmark of Alzheimer’s – the researchers found that giving the animals cannabinoids improved their mental functioning. The presence of amyloid activated an immune response and caused inflammation. However those given cannabinoids showed no immune response or inflammation.
Lead researchers Dr Maria de Ceballos said, “These findings that cannabinoids work both to prevent inflammation and to protect the brain may set the stage for their use as a therapeutic approach for Alzheimer’s disease.”
Removes Plaques from the Brain
Research published in 2013 suggested for the first time how cannabinoids might slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. In this study, the scientists found the problem was not the formation of plaques caused by amyloid proteins. It was the inability to clear them. Cannabinoids are able to escort the disease-causing proteins out of the brain and thus might keep plaque levels low in healthy people.
One particular cannabinoid called cannabidiol was found to dramatically improve memory in mice with Alzheimer’s. In the words of lead researcher Tim Karl, “It basically brings the performance of the animals back to the level of healthy animals.” Reports I’ve seen say that cannabidiol does not produce a “high.”
A recent study published by scientists at the University of South Florida found that very low doses of another compound in marijuana called THC may slow down or stop Alzheimer’s progression. THC is intoxicating – it’s the ingredient most craved by pot users.
Lead researcher Dr Chuanhai Cao said: “THC is known to be a potent antioxidant with neuroprotective properties, but this is the first report that the compound directly affects Alzheimer’s pathology by decreasing amyloid beta levels, inhibiting its aggregation, and enhancing mitochondrial function.”
Previous research found that boosting THC increased an enzyme in the hippocampus that’s important for learning and memory. This does not constitute proof that THC actually boosts memory – and in fact there’s evidence to contradict any such idea.
Bad for the Young – Good for the Old
Dr Gary Wenk, professor of neuroscience at Ohio State University believes that the use of marijuana to slow or prevent Alzheimer’s certainly has some good science behind it.
Perhaps most impressive is the fact that the brain produces its own cannabinoids that protect the brain from harmful toxins and mutant proteins such as beta amyloid. Stimulating the brain’s own cannabinoid system might reduce the risk of memory loss and dementia, suggests Dr. Wenk.
How can marijuana both cause and prevent memory loss? Some researchers believe it may be a matter of dosage, with very low doses being protective while high doses damage the brain.
Dr Wenk believes whether a user gains or loses memory is a function of age. When you are young any dose of cannabinoids will impair the brain. In middle or older age, the same dose has a reverse effect and will most likely slow down the development of dementia.
Recent research in this area offers interesting possibilities for new treatments, but the fact is that virtually all research has been limited to laboratory and animal studies. Human beings are not rats, and there is still much to learn about how cannabinoids affect the brain.
Until we understand more and there is solid research on people, I don’t recommend smoking pot. I would like to see more research on the non-intoxicating among the 60 or more cannabinoids. Cancer research on these promising chemicals is accelerating, and maybe dementia studies will follow soon.
Lee Euler, Publisher
Georges Bourbaki noticed that his memory was deteriorating. He was no longer able to recall what was once familiar to him. So he decided to do something about it.
A few weeks later, all signs of cognitive decline had disappeared.
How did he do it? Keep reading. . .
Is this the end of Alzheimer’s?
On December 13th of 2013 Oxford researchers stumbled onto a natural treatment for Alzheimer’s that patients are calling a “Godsend”.
It slashes symptoms better than any drug on the market…
And one lead researcher describes it as the first treatment that “actually works.”
But in America almost no one is talking about it…
Until now. One renowned doctor is releasing full details on this new game-changing Alzheimer’s treatment in this stunning free video.
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Mr. Bourbaki, a non-fiction writer from Germany, achieved such a remarkable result after he began to use a medical device which he wore on his head for 30 minutes each day.
The device creates a rapid succession of magnetic impulses that stimulate the brain. It is a form of therapy called repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS).
Since enjoying such great success himself, Georges has become a tireless campaigner for the treatment.
Over 80% Improvement in Dementia Patients
Also in Germany, Dr Oliver Seemann has employed rTMS to treat more than 200 patients suffering from Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. He says he sees improvement in over 80% of his patients – four out of five.
“In particular, this treatment had a positive effect on language skills, cognitive abilities, concentration and attention as well as general well-being in most patients. In some cases, it resulted in markedly increased social interest with improved ability to establish contact.”
It’s already well established that rTMS affects the working of the brain. But using it to improve memory or treat dementia is a recent idea that’s been tested in several studies.
In a small preliminary study, Italian scientists found that rTMS produced an 11 percent improvement in the ability of Alzheimer’s patients to understand what was said to them. The placebo group did not experience an improvement. Even after eight weeks the improvement in the rTMS group was still evident.
30% Fewer Mistakes on Memory Recall Tests
In another study, carried out at Northwestern University in Chicago, 16 healthy volunteers aged 21 – 40 were shown photos of human faces. At the same time a few unrelated words were spoken to them. They were asked to remember this face/word pairing.
Prior to this they underwent MRI scans to pinpoint exactly which part of their hippocampal region was responsible for storing memories, because its location can vary by up to a centimeter among people.
Although a magnetic field is not able to penetrate the hippocampus because it lies too deep, it can be indirectly stimulated by another region close to the surface of the skull.
After the memory test, this area was stimulated with electromagnetic pulses for 20 minutes a day for 5 days for the active group while others received sham treatment.
Results showed that those receiving rTMS performed far better on the memory recall tests, making 30% fewer mistakes. The benefits were still apparent 24 hours later.
Study leader Professor Joel Voss said: “We show for the first time that you can specifically change memory functions of the brain in adults without surgery or drugs…This non-invasive stimulation improves the ability to learn new things. It has tremendous potential for treating memory disorders.”
The precise mechanism is still being studied but the electromagnetic pulses are believed to generate electrical charges in the nerve fibers of brain cells. The increased activity helps the brain to function better.
The NeuroAD Chair
A high technology piece of furniture called a NeuroAD chair has been developed to treat those with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s. Patients sit in the chair while specific areas of the brain are stimulated with magnetic pulses.
At the same time a screen in front of the patient gives him or her tailored cognitive tasks to perform. This combination is believed to work better than either alone to improve brain function, helping the brain form new neural connections. It has already proved effective in trials carried out in the USA and Israel.
Although safe, painless, non-invasive and with no contraindications, the NeuroAD chair is at the time of writing (October 2014) available only in Europe.
Lee Euler, Publisher
Recent research has identified some specific brain benefits you can reap by consuming dark chocolate. And get this: They found that eating dark chocolate is not just a moderate fix. The antioxidants in chocolate may be able to turn back the brain-aging clock by 20 to 30 years.
It’s a startling discovery.
And it means for some people, chocolate might actually fix memory difficulties that crop up when they get older. Keep reading for the details. . .
The Secret of Enzymes Plus an Odd Fact:
Most Health Foods are a Waste of Money
By Lee Euler
You can take vitamins, minerals and antioxidants by the handful and still suffer poor health. Now we know why. Our diets lack a vital food—a type of nutrient that even some alternative doctors don’t know about. I’m talking about enzymes.
Thanks to enzyme supplements, a mother’s lifelong migraines disappeared, and a man with “terminal” kidney cancer was alive and well 15 years later. In fact, a great many cancer patients beat the disease and are still alive today thanks to enzymes.
Enzymes are a key part of most alternative cancer treatment plans. More important: Even if you’re healthy today, taking enzymes is something you can and should do now to prevent not only cancer, but also heart disease, pain and diabetes and many other ailments.
Enzyme supplements are among the top-selling pain-relievers in Germany and they’re even used by the German Olympic team. As for us older folks, research indicates that enzymes improve circulation and can outperform blood-clot and blood-thinning drugs. (Good-bye, warfarin!)
They’ve even helped 9 out of 10 autistic children. A few months back I received a letter from a mother whose 7-year-old autistic son was almost completely cured after she read my Special Report called The Missing Ingredient, and then started giving him enzymes.
This letter came to me out of the blue. The mother wrote, “He has basically been nonverbal until summer 2009, he started talking one day and has never stopped!!” She adds, “The enzymes have kept my 3-year-old son, Noah’s eczema AWAY! We are truly blessed, and I believe our Lord led me to you and your book.”
How can ONE supplement possibly do all this? Just ask yourself: What if you were getting NO vitamins in your diet? You’d be very sick. This nutrient is just as important, and you’re getting almost none, if you’re like the typical American. Click here to learn more.
The researchi, led by scientists at the Columbia University Medical Center, indicates you can reverse the decline of a specific section of the brain – one that deteriorates with age — by consuming chocolate. And, in an odd quirk, it’s likely that chocolate doesn’t prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s. What it does do is prevent or reverse the normal memory loss that comes with age.
During this study, people in their 50s and 60s who consumed a drink containing cocoa flavanols, antioxidants from chocolate, significantly improved their memory skills in the span of just three months.
The Aging Brain
All of us almost inevitably lose some of our intellectual abilities with each passing year. That means that as we reach middle age, we have a harder time remembering names, misplace our car keys more often and spend more time looking for where we parked the car.
For most of us, this gradual memory decline, which actually begins in young adulthood, isn’t very noticeable until we reach the age when we’re eligible for senior citizen discounts. It’s also not the same memory problem that afflicts people with Alzheimer’s disease, an illness that entails the widespread destruction of neurons in several sections of the brain.
Previous studies have suggested, but not proven, that deterioration of an area of the brain called the dentate gyrus causes these non-Alzheimer’s, age-linked brain and memory changes. So the latest study was designed both to identify changes in the dentate gyrus linked to memory glitches and to see if flavanols from chocolate could help prevent or repair the changes.
The researchers found good evidence for both of these suppositions.
“When we imaged our research subjects’ brains, we found noticeable improvements in the function of the dentate gyrus in those who consumed the high-cocoa-flavanol drink,” says researcher Adam M. Brickman.
During the research, people consuming the antioxidants from chocolate took memory tests comparing their memory performance against people who were consuming drinks very low in those antioxidants.
The results of the tests were striking. Chocolate produced remarkable memory improvements.
“If a participant had the memory of a typical 60-year-old at the beginning of the study, after three months that person on average had the memory of a typical 30- or 40-year-old,” says researcher Scott A. Small.
As I mentioned, brain scans showed that consuming chocolate increased electrical activity in the dentate gyrus, a part of the larger memory-retaining brain region called the hippocampus. However, activity in another part of the hippocampus called the entorhinal cortex did not increase.
Since the entorhinal cortex suffers serious damage very quickly once you start to experience Alzheimer’s, the researchers believe these scanning results support the idea that normal age-related memory problems are distinct from Alzheimer’s damage. In addition, this shows that the flavanols in chocolate probably won’t prevent damage linked to Alzheimer’s.
The researchers also point out that most supermarket chocolate candy bars do not contain enough flavanols to produce much help for your brain. You have to eat dark chocolate to derive any benefits. Fortunately, word about the benefits of dark chocolate has gotten out and the stuff is available in all sizes and flavors, from orange to cherry to coconut, at stores that sell healthy food.
Unfortunately, many of these treats still have too much sugar. If you look hard you can find some that are 85% dark chocolate, but that’s about the highest. (Don’t be fooled by ingredients like “dehydrated cane juice.” It’s sugar, duh.)
I’ve solved the problem by eating baker’s chocolate, which contains no sugar at all. And before you turn up your nose, I have to tell you I’ve come to like it. As I’ve said many times, sugar is an addiction and you can wean yourself off it. While I will always love the stuff and be tempted by it, I’ve learned to enjoy food without it.
Meanwhile, the researchers at Columbia are continuing to delve into the brain benefits of chocolate. But the results of the current research are clear: Eating dark chocolate can dramatically boost your memory.
Lee Euler, Publisher