Sharon's take: Clinical Nutrition Perspective on Cognitive Decline
June is Alzheimer's Disease (AD) awareness month. The thought of any cognitive decline or even "brain fog" can cause significant anxiety, and not just because we fear the loss of qualities that make us, "us," but because we feel helpless in the face of it.
But are we really helpless? Recent research suggests otherwise! While we do not have a complete understanding of what causes cognitive decline, promising early studies indicate that a multi-pronged approach can stem its progression or even reverse the symptoms. One protocol, developed and tested by Dr. Bresden at UCLA, focuses on optimizing metabolic parameters, as with any chronic manageable disease.
The Bresden premise is that the combined effect of many tactics is key; his protocol employs 36 potential levers, customized according to specific needs of the patient, including1:
- Reduce inflammation with an anti-inflammatory diet and supplements
- Understand and optimize nutrient levels including: B12, B5, D3, K2, antioxidants, Zinc:Copper ratio and more
- Improve gut health
- Include cognitive enhancement elements such as omega-3 fatty acids
- Optimize hormone balance
- Address any heavy metal toxicity and sleep disturbances identified
- Enhance the body's own clean-up mechanisms, by incorporating a 12 hour fast overnight
- Reduce stress, possibly by yoga or meditation, and incorporate regular exercise
The good news is that these steps will reduce your risk not just for cognitive decline, but for many chronic diseases - they may already look very familiar to you!
Now, where to begin? A good start is to schedule an overall integrative health evaluation that includes assessing your functional status for key nutrients and other genetic or predictive parameters - if you have this in place, you are already ahead of the game! The next step is to optimize a food, lifestyle, and supplement plan specific to your needs.
Schedule your nutritional consult today to learn more about how to reduce the risks and to enjoy vibrant health, today.
- Bresden DE. Reversal of cognitive decline: a novel therapeutic program. Aging. 2014: 6(9): 707-717.