Memory & Brain Support

  1. Protect your brain and fight dementia with delicious snacks

    The "forbidden" treats that can fight dementia

    You know what I hate about diets? It's probably the same thing you do -- that when it comes right down to it, most diets aren't really diets.

    They're lists. Specifically, lists of don'ts.

    Don't eat this... don't eat that... and definitely don't even try that other thing. By they time they're through with you, there's nothing left at all worth eating.

    Today I'm going to correct that, because some of the foods you love -- including the very foods you've been told to avoid -- aren't just acceptable "cheats" in my diet.

    They're essential parts of it.

    And two "don'ts" in particular just might help protect your brain and prevent dementia.

    The first is walnuts.

    Even mainstream docs will admit that walnuts pack some healthy fats. But they'll also warn you to keep away from them because it's easy to get too much of those fats.

    Plus, nuts are loaded with calories.
    If you're trying to lose weight, they'll say, you need to limit the calories and fat so pass on the nuts.

    But nuts can be a healthy part of a diet, even when you're trying to lose weight. And now, the latest research finds the antioxidants in walnuts can protect your brain as you age and may even help prevent Alzheimer's disease.

    Mice fed walnuts daily had improvements in memory and learning skills, and lower levels of anxiety. They also had lower levels of oxidative damage in the brain caused by beta amyloid, the protein linked to Alzheimer's.

    As a result, eating walnuts regularly might help prevent the disease, delay the onset or slow the progression.

    And it doesn't take much to get the benefits. The mice got the equivalent of about 1-1.5 ounces of walnuts a day -- or just the right amount for a snack.

    The study focused on walnuts, but other nuts come with healthy fats, minerals and antioxidants so feel free to mix it up. (Just avoid candy-coated, honey-roasted, caramel-covered and other sugared-up nut treats.)

    Now, let me turn another "don't" into a "do."

    You like chocolate, right? Of course you do. Everyone does -- and while chocolate does contain sugars and other stuff you don't need, cocoa is loaded with terrific antioxidants, especially the kind that can protect your brain.

    In one new study, healthy people over the age of 50 given a special drink packed with cocoa flavanols such as epicatechin saw major improvements in their memory.

    There's catch to this study, and it's a pretty big one: They used huge levels of these nutrients, so much so that you'd have to eat about seven chocolate bars a day to get that amount yourself, and that's definitely way too much.

    I recommend taking a mixed approach: enjoy a square or two of a quality dark chocolate per day, and get the rest of these nutrients from a quality antioxidant supplement as well as other natural sources such as green tea, black grapes and blackberries.

    You'll even find some of those flavanols in wine.

    There's one diet that allows you to enjoy all these "don'ts" and more -- and it's just about the healthiest one on the planet. It's the Mediterranean lifestyle filled delicious healthy fats, and even allows for nuts, chocolate and wine.

    Not coincidentally, the diet is also proven to protect the brain and slash the risk of dementia.

    Even better, it'll give your heart a bulletproof jacket, cutting the risk of heart attack and even stroke.

    Ready to get started? Read this free report from my House Calls archives to learn more.

  2. Cold sore virus linked to Alzheimer's disease

    Could your cold sore really lead to dementia?

    Some people think there's nothing more embarrassing -- nothing quite as humiliating -- as a cold sore. It's like wearing a huge sign announcing to the world that you're infected with the herpes virus.

    But what's happening on the outside is nothing compared to what might be going on inside your body.

    The herpes simplex 1 virus has been linked to conditions much worse than cold sores, including a higher risk of dementia. And now, the latest research makes the link again, finding that being infected can double your risk of Alzheimer's disease.

    That's alarming news if you've ever had a cold sore.

    But don't panic, either. After all, some 80 percent of the population either has this virus right now or will eventually get it.

    The key is to keep it dormant, since studies show more active infections are more likely to raise the risk of Alzheimer's. And you can take action today to do just that, helping to ensure that you never have to suffer the brain-damaging side effects of an active herpes infection.

    If you're prone to getting cold sores, that means you have the infection -- and for that, I recommend increasing your intake of L-lysine, the detoxifying amino acid found in legumes, fish and poultry.

    But while those foods are certainly an excellent way to get some of what you need, you won't get enough to fight off the herpes virus.

    Take a supplement.

    During an outbreak, take a 1,000 mg two or three times a day between meals. And to prevent outbreaks, take about half as much. Over time, you should find the outbreaks hit less frequently.

    Eventually, you may be able to avoid them altogether as the virus goes dormant.

    For more on the herpes virus, including prevention and the best ways to limit outbreaks if you're infected, see my book, "Prescription for Natural Cures."

  3. Turmeric can help brain stem cells

    Common curry spice is like fertilizer for your brain It's kind of funny when you think about it. While the drug industry wastes billions trying to create meds that don't work, some of the most potent substances on Earth are hiding in plain sight. Just take a look at turmeric, a spice commonly used in curries and other Indian foods. We know this stuff can cross the blood-brain barrier. It does it so effectively that people who eat a lot of curry actually have a slight discoloration in the brain because the spice is also a potent pigment. Continue reading →
  4. Good circulation can protect against cognitive decline

    Heart health again linked to brain health Want to protect your brain? Start by taking care of your heart. Like a good marriage, the two need each other. But the one who really "wears the pants" in this relationship is the heart -- and now, a unique new study shows how good blood vessel function and heart health can help keep you sharp as a tack, while poor function just might start the slip into cognitive decline. Continue reading →
  5. Eating fish can grow your brain

    Grow your brain with fish Bigger isn't always better. But when it comes to your brain, you want it to be as big as possible -- because the more gray matter you have, the better your cognitive function. There's no drug that can grow brain cells or even prevent them from dying off. But there is something else that can do the trick -- a safe and natural habit I hope you have already. And if you don't, it's not too late to get started. Continue reading →
  6. Cognitive decline boosts stroke risk

    One more reason to never ignore cognitive decline Many older folks facing cognitive decline never bother to mention it to a doctor. Some are afraid they'll get bad news, like a dementia diagnosis. But many just assume that cognitive decline is a normal part of aging. It's not. Continue reading →
  7. Exercise can prevent dementia

    Cut your dementia risk in half If there was a new drug on the market that could cut the risk of dementia in half, you can bet millions of people would swallow it -- and most wouldn't care about the risks or the cost. But there is something you can do right now to prevent this life-wrecking disease, and it won't cost you or dime or put you at risk for anything. All you have to do is get moving. Continue reading →
  8. Fish oil can keep dementia at bay

    Fish oil offers mega brain and body benefits I'm not the type to follow trends. But when it comes to fish oil, I proudly swim with the school -- because there's a good reason it's become the best-selling supplement in the nation. It works. It works on so many levels I could write a book just on the benefits of fish oil, and maybe one day I will. But today, I want to update you on some of the latest cutting-edge science on the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil. Let's start with your brain. Continue reading →
  9. Healthy habits can slash Alzheimer's risk

    Simple steps can prevent Alzheimer's It's one of the most common concerns I hear from my older patients: how can I prevent Alzheimer's disease? Even my healthy patients worry because they've heard from the media that there's nothing you can do about it -- that it's bad genes, bad luck or both. It's like being out in a lightning storm with no place to take cover. Continue reading →
  10. Walking can ease Parkinson's

    What every Parkinson's patient needs to do Too many Parkinson's patients hear the diagnosis and just give up. They fall into a downward spiral of depression, and many become so withdrawn they rarely leave their homes. But don't give up, and don't give in. Do just the opposite -- get up and get out, because new research confirms what I tell my own patients: A daily walk can help slow the progression of the disease and improve your quality of life. The key is to start as early as you can, because the biggest benefits go to patients with the mild to moderate symptoms that mark the first stages of the disease. And if you walk just three times a week, you can see improvements by just about every possible measure. Continue reading →
  11. Sugar can cause memory loss

    Eating sweets can rot your brain Sugar rots teeth. But it also rots something far more important: your brain cells. Diabetics have a higher risk of dementia because of their sky-high blood sugar levels -- but you don't have to be a diabetic yourself to suffer from the brain-rotting damage of sugar. Even slight elevations in blood sugar can cause memory problems. I've warned you of this risk before, and new research confirms that these all-too-common sugar spikes can actually damage the brain by shrinking your hippocampus. Continue reading →
  12. Poor heart health can lead to memory loss

    Brain protection starts with the heart "Hearts and minds" is more than just a cliché. It's a perfect description of what goes on in your body, too -- because the strength of one is directly related to the health of the other. That's why I always tell seniors concerned about brain health and cognitive decline to focus on the heart first -- and now, new research shows I've been taking the right approach all along. The healthier your heart, the less likely you are to suffer from learning problems, memory loss and other warning signs of cognitive decline. Continue reading →
  13. Vitamin D can slow Parkinson's

    Vitamin D can slow the cognitive decline that often comes with Parkinson's disease and may even help relieve some of the physical symptoms.
  14. Pesticides block aldehyde dehydrogenase

    A dozen commonly used pesticides can increase your risk of Parkinson's disease, new research finds.
  15. Sitting can rot brain cells

    Spending too much time with your meat in a seat can damage critical brain cells, new research confirms.
  16. Dealing with depression using fish oil

    A new study on senior women shows again that the omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil can help ease depression.

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