Brain diseases are horrible, especially alzheimer’s. It not only robs you of your precious memories and eventually your ability to function at all, but it also wreaks havoc on family and friends. If you’ve ever experienced this, you’ll definitely want to learn everything you can on how to reduce your risk of alzheimer’s disease.
Science is progressing with respect to cures, but so far there is no definite treatment.
There are, however, many natural remedies that are quite promising. And one of these is apples. That’s right! As it turns out, your grandmother’s warning to eat an apple a day may have been more on point than once thought.
In fact, new studies show that drinking apple juice just three times a week can help reduce risk of Alzheimer’s disease and heart problems.
The Science Behind Apples
Apples are full of antioxidants that are known protect your brain cells against oxidative stress, a damaging process linked to Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative disorders.
Researchers from Cornell University in New York state, “On the basis of serving size, fresh apples have some of the highest levels of [the antioxidant] quercetin when compared to other fruits and vegetables and may be among the best food choices for fighting Alzheimer’s.” (1)
Researchers at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell also showed the amazing effects of apple juice on Alzheimer’s disease. Their study found that apple juice consumption is linked to a lower production of beta-amyloid plaque, also called “senile plaque,” which is commonly found in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease. (2)
According to the lead researcher, Dr. Thomas B. Shea, apple juice may prevent the decline of a specific neurotransmitter known as acetylcholine, which, like other neurotransmitters, transmits messages to nerve cells and is crucial for good memory and proper brain health.
Other studies show that people with Alzheimer’s, and where acetylcholine is increased in the brain, Alzheimer’s is slowed. (3)
In a 2006 study, 21 people with Alzheimer’s, who were between the ages of 72-93, were given 4 ounces of apple juice twice a day for one month. Results showed that drinking apple juice just three times a week, could reduce risk of Alzheimer’s by an incredible 75 percent. (4)
How To Reduce Risk of Alzheimer’s Disease And Remedy It
While apples can definitely help prevent alzheimer’s, when the memory loss and confusion has already set in, natural doctors and nutritionists suggest a more powerful combination on top of the apples to combat the deterioration caused by this disease.
1. High Dose Vitamin and Minerals
One study conducted at the University of Hawaii, showed that there was an 88 percent improvement in vascular dementia in men who were taking both vitamin C and E. (5)
Other studies show that the B vitamins play a big role in mental decline. In fact, one study revealed that vitamin B treatment slowed brain shrinkage over 2 years. Another study showed that taking B vitamins can reduce grey matter atrophy in the regions of the brain that are known to be susceptible to Alzheimer’s-related degeneration. (6)
An additional study published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry that involved 6,000 people, showed that those with the highest total intake of vitamin B3 (niacin) were significantly less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease. It additionally revealed that niacin from food was inversely associated with Alzheimer’s risk and a slower rate of cognitive decline. (7)
2. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is quickly becoming a “cure all” because it is shown to help with so many health issues. When it comes to Alzheimer’s disease and mental decline, however, the ketones produced from eating this oil, provide fuel to the brain that is thought to be beneficial for people with dementia or Alzheimer’s. Coconut oil contains 66 percent medium chain triglycerides (MCTs), which your body can easily and quickly convert into ketones. (8)
One of the biggest advocates of coconut oil for Alzheimer’s is Dr. Mary Newport. She authored prominent case study purporting the profound benefits of ketones and how they help fight Alzheimer’s disease. (9)
Newport claims she was able to reverse her husband’s advanced Alzheimer’s (that was not improved with drugs) using fresh virgin coconut oil containing MCTs (medium chain triglycerides), which your liver can easily convert to molecular energy enhancing ketones. She suggests taking a tablespoon of pure cold pressed coconut oil a minimum of twice a day to reverse advanced Alzheimer’s.
Another theory with respect to Alzheimer’s disease is that it is actually similar to diabetes. In fact, some are even calling Alzheimer’s “Diabetes 3.”
Researchers have known for some time that your brain uses glucose as its primary fuel for energy. But new studies have revealed that your brain actually manufactures its own insulin in order to convert glucose in your blood into fuel or energy. (10) When your brain’s ability to produce insulin decreases, it literally begins to starve.
Researchers believe this is exactly what happens to Alzheimer’s patients—their brains start to atrophy, leading to impaired functioning and eventually loss of memory, speech, movement, and even personality.
Interestingly, we already know that diabetics over 65 have a 125 percent increased risk for Alzheimer’s disease, so scientists are now looking seriously at the link between the two diseases as both are related to insulin resistance. (11)
This is where coconut oil comes in. The ketones produced from eating coconut oil can supply the energy (fuel) not being manufactured by the brain in those with Alzheimer’s.
Studies on the effects of coconut oil on the brain are ongoing. One such study began in 2013 at the University of South Florida’s Health Byrd Alzheimer’s Institute. Individuals with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s are being enrolled to look at the effects of coconut oil on the disease, versus a placebo. (12)
And now, the US government is also looking for volunteers for a double blind study to look at the efficacy of coconut oil as a possible treatment for older adults with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease. (13)
Eat Organic Apples
The U.S. Department of Agriculture finds that fresh, whole apples supply about 4.4 milligrams of quercetin for every 100 grams of apple. To optimize quercetin content, it is important to also eat their pigment-rich skin.
Apples without skin contain less than half the amount of quercetin as whole apples. Apple juice typically contains less than one-tenth the amount of quercetin in a whole apple. (14)
Also make sure to eat organic apples to avoid exposure to harmful pesticides.