1. Dementia could be caused by ‘leaks’ in blood-brain barrier

    Arm your brain against dementia

    This could be the biggest breakthrough in Alzheimer's research in years -- a major piece of the puzzle that could help us spot the earliest warning signs and stop it dead in its tracks.

    And it starts with your brain's natural defense system, the blood-brain barrier.

    That's what allows oxygen and nutrients in your blood to enter the brain AND keeps out any toxins. And for the most part, it works like a charm.

    But sometimes, a "leak" allows toxins to come rushing in -- and since those toxins (especially metals) often play a key role in neurodegenerative diseases such as dementia, it's no surprise that a new study that finds seniors in the early stages of Alzheimer's have more leaks in their blood-brain barriers.

    The biggest damage happens in the gray matter of the cortex -- the very region where toxic proteins accumulate in dementia patients.

    But you can repair the leaky pipes in your brain with three safe, natural, and inexpensive tools that have already been proven to help protect the brain from dementia.

    Get started on making these changes today, and you might never have to battle cognitive problems tomorrow:

    1) Probiotics: When you take an antibiotic, it can wipe your own supply of gut bacteria clean -- and it could stay depleted or out of balance LONG after you've stopped taking it. Some studies even show it's never the same again! Take a probiotic supplement to restore the bacterial balance in your gut -- because a study on mice found that their blood-brain barrier started to crumble when they were wiped of their gut bacteria, but it tightened up again when the good bugs had been replenished.

    2) Vitamins B6, B12, and folate: These three are absolutely essential to brain function, and they can play a key role in strengthening the blood-brain barrier... especially in the folks most at risk for Alzheimer's disease, like folks with high levels of inflammation and mild cognitive impairment. After taking a supplement with these three nutrients in a 2003 study, they saw improved function in their blood-brain barriers and slowed progression of their cognitive impairment. Blends containing these have also been shown in other studies to help slow the "brain shrink" and to improve cognition in folks in the early stages of cognitive decline.

    3) Thiamine: Boosting your intake of this B vitamin could help strengthen your blood-brain barrier. Sometimes, you'll find it in the same blend that has the B6, B12, and folate I just mentioned but your doctor can tell you how much of these nutrients you need and the best ways to get them. Avoid alcohol, which can block thiamine so it doesn't get used the way it should.

    Finally, be sure to protect against those tiny "microbleeds" in the brain that you can't see or feel... but that can double your risk of dementia. Learn more on how to stop them right here.

  2. Cerebral microbleeds linked to dementia

    Is your brain leaking?

    It can drive you nuts when you're trying to get some sleep at night -- the Chinese water torture of a slow leak in the bathroom sink, echoing through your quiet home.

    Drip... drip... drip...

    But there could be another leak that you CAN'T hear -- and you won't even know about until it's too late.

    Some 1 in 5 seniors have what's known as "cerebral microbleeds," which is the slow drip, drip, drip of blood right into your brain.

    For years, the mainstream has claimed these bleeds are so small that they're nothing to worry about in most cases -- just a common sign of getting older and not necessarily any kind of risk.

    I never bought that line.

    No good could possibly come from blood leaking into your brain, and the latest research shows why: That slow drip could be your first -- and maybe only -- warning sign of one of the most devastating diseases of old age.

    It could lead directly to Alzheimer's disease.

    Don't worry too much; in a moment I'll share the secret to fixing those leaks and sealing up your brain tighter than a drum -- because the vast majority of microbleeds share a single cause.

    And it's one you can repair almost immediately.

    First, let's take a closer look at just what's on the line here.

    The new study finds that the slow leak of blood does serious cognitive damage, leading to lower scores on brain tests over six years and DOUBLING the risk of dementia overall.

    Bigger bleeds and more of them lead to even bigger risks, and bleeds in different parts of the brain cause different types of damage.

    For example, microbleeds in the lobes will slam your all-important executive function, slow your ability to process information, and damage your memory. Bleeds in other parts of the brain will mess up your motor speed and information processing.

    OK, like I said earlier, I'm not trying to scare you -- I'm here to HELP you, and if you have any reason to be concerned your doc can check for microbleeds with an MRI exam.

    Since there's no radiation involved, the only real risk of the test is the cost.

    But you don't have to spring for an MRI to cut your risk of springing a leak; as I mentioned earlier there's a single common cause responsible for the lion's share of those bleeds.

    It's medication.

    Specifically, it's blood-thinning drugs -- especially aspirin -- that can increase the risk of microbleeds.

    While some people may need those meds, the majority of people who take them shouldn't be on them at all. Even the FDA has said aspirin shouldn't be used for "primary prevention" (as in, preventing a first heart attack).

    Obviously, don't stop taking your meds without speaking to your doctor first.

  3. Disease fighting health benefits of almonds

    Almonds can help fight off major disease and keep blood sugar under control, according to multiple new studies.
  4. Mild cognitive impairment doubles death risk

    Even mild cognitive impairment can increase your risk of an early death, according to new research. Fortunately you can protect your brain, and slash your risk, with supplements
  5. Chelation removes blockages in carotid arteries

    Clogged arteries, especially a blockage in the artery in your neck, can increase the risk of cognitive problems. Chelation could help clear those blockages, while removing dangerous metals from your body.
  6. Brain protecting benefits of green tea

    Green tea can protect the brain, helping the different regions to communicate with each other and enhancing your cognitive function, a new study finds.
  7. Test for Alzheimer’s disease

    A new blood test being pushed for dementia is so inaccurate that two-thirds of the people who test positive will never get the disease.
  8. Drug side effects make you feel worse

    Drug given for many common conditions can actually worse other common diseases, a new study confirms.
  9. Senior moments not mild cognitive impairment

    Memory lapses or "senior moments" might feel like warning signs of dementia, but they're not. Four of five seniors who experience them will never develop the disease.
  10. Get fit or boost dementia risk

    Poor fitness in middle age can quadruple your risk of dementia in your senior years, according to new research.
  11. Advanced glycation end products

    Grilling, frying and charring meats can produce a substance that damages the brain and may even cause cognitive decline.
  12. A brisk walk can grow brain cells

    A regular brisk walk can help brain cells to grow and may even prevent dementia, a new study finds.
  13. DDT linked to Alzheimer's disease

    Nearly 80 percent of us have been exposed to the pesticide DDT -- and new research finds that exposure could boost your risk of Parkinson's disease.
  14. Reverse ‘brain shrink’ with fish oil

    The omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil can slow the brain shrink that comes with age – and maybe even slow cognitive decline along with it.
  15. Moderate drinking can speed cognitive decline

    Two drinks a night can age the brain and speed the onset of cognitive decline, according to a new study.
  16. Cardiovascular disease boosts dementia risk

    Heart disease and other heart problems can increase the risk of dementia, at least in women, according to new research.
  17. Too much insulin can damage the brain

    Too much insulin can damage the brain and lead to memory loss -- which is why diabetics are especially prone to dementia.
  18. Get fit to protect memory

    A little bit of fitness goes a long way toward brain protection, improving memory by as much as 25 percent, according to new research.
  19. Benefits of exercise prevent depression

    A little exercise today can help prevent depression tomorrow, according to a new study.
  20. Hardening of the arteries boosts dementia risk

    Hardened arteries can damage the brain and boost your risk of memory loss and dementia.

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