1. Hardening of the arteries boosts dementia risk

    Hardened arteries for a harder time

    Traffic. Everyone hates it -- especially here in Southern California, where it seems like we have some of the worst traffic on the planet.

    But there's one place where the traffic could be worse than anything you'll see out on the highway, no matter where you live, and that's inside your body.

    If you start to feel hardening of the arteries harden your body, the flow of blood slows like cars on the L.A. freeway at rush hour. And when the flow slows, you suffer damage... disease... maybe even death.

    Hardening of the arteries are a major risk factor for all your vital organs, and they can positively destroy the one organ that relies on blood more than any other: Your brain.

    Your brain sucks up 20 percent of your body's blood. But if stiff arteries choke off even part of that supply, your brain will suffer serious damage -- including beta-amyloid plaques and lesions in the white matter, according to a new study of 91 seniors.

    That's the type of damage that leads to cognitive decline, dementia and even Alzheimer's disease.

    Clearly, you need to keep your arteries as elastic as possible -- but that's a whole lot easier said than done.

    While keeping your waistline in check, eating right and getting some movement can help, those steps alone aren't always enough. In most people, age alone will cause hardening of the arteries.

    That's why you need to do more -- and you can start with some of the simple, safe and natural nutrients you should be getting anyway.

    Magnesium, for example, is known to relax blood vessel walls. The omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil can restore elasticity to arteries already starting to harden. And garlic extract can slash levels of coronary plaque and help keep the aorta elastic at the same time.

    But the best way to help protect your arteries right now, especially if they're already starting to harden, is with a controversial treatment that your own doctor will dismiss.

    It's called chelation, and you can feel free to ignore his protests -- because this critical life-saving treatment is backed by decades of solid scientific research.

    I had the full story on chelation therapy and how it can help you in the May 2013 edition of my printed newsletter, Health Revelations.

    If you're a subscriber, use the password in the current issue to login and read all about it online. Not a subscriber? It's not too late -- sign up today and you'll get your own password for complete access to all my back issues.

    I'm not done with artery health yet. Keep reading for one habit that can cause hardening of the arteries.

  2. Signs of high blood sugar harm memory

    Signs of High blood sugar harms memory

    If you don't have diabetes, it's pretty easy to ignore your blood sugar levels. After all, even without diabetes, you've probably got enough other health concerns to worry about, right?

    Well, ignore those numbers at your own risk -- because signs of high blood sugar can damage your brain, harm your memory and set you up for dementia, and not just in the long term.

    It could be hurting you right now, as new research finds older adults with even slightly elevated blood sugar levels do far worse on memory tests than older adults with normal blood sugar levels.

    The study even shows why: As your blood sugar levels rise, even just a little nit, your hippocampus can shrink -- and that's the part of the brain you need for memory and learning.

    What's most alarming of all is that none of the 141 older adults in the study were diabetic. They weren't even pre-diabetic. They weren't heavy drinkers, they weren't overweight and they weren't suffering from any overt signs of memory loss or cognitive decline.

    They were, by most mainstream measures, healthy -- with some of them at the high end of the "normal" range, or just beyond it, for blood sugar.

    Clearly, it's time to stop considering those levels to be normal or healthy, and this study isn't the only reason why. Other studies have also shown how even slight bumps or signs of  high blood sugar can set you up for memory loss and dementia.

    And a growing body of evidence shows that blood sugar plays a central role in your overall health and longevity -- and signs of high blood sugar can cause serious damage even at levels not high enough to be considered diabetes or pre-diabetes.

    Mainstream guidelines say to keep your total blood sugar below 100, but my guidelines are a little stricter. Aim for 90 or less.

  3. Sleep can be natural detox for the brain

    Sleep can detoxify the brain by sweeping out toxins -- including the toxins that lead to dementia.
  4. Oral bacteria one of the causes of dementia

    The same germs responsible for gum disease could play a role in dementia and Alzheimer's disease, according to new research.
  5. Essential fatty acids cause telomeres to grow

    The omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil can stop one of the key markers of aging on the cellular level.
  6. Common meds can cause brain damage in seniors

    A common class of meds given to seniors can damage the brain and set the stage for dementia.
  7. Arsenic in rice is unsafe

    The feds say the arsenic levels in rice are safe to eat -- but that flies in the face of science.
  8. Diabetes causes brain atrophy

    Diabetes can shrink your brain, causing the damage that can lead to dementia and even Alzheimer's disease.
  9. Testosterone in women can help female brains

    Testosterone gel can improve memory in older women, and may even reduce the risk of dementia and Alzheimer's disease.
  10. The Mediterranean diet beats dementia

    Seniors who stick to a Mediterranean diet have a lower risk of dementia, according to a review of 12 studies.
  11. Avoid brain damage by boosting the immune system

    Infections such as pneumonia can do lasting damage to the brain, increasing your risk of dementia and Alzheimer's disease.
  12. Signs of high blood sugar boost dementia risk

    High blood sugar levels can increase the risk of diabetes, even if they're not high enough to be considered diabetes.
  13. Avoid possible causes of anemia and lower dementia risk

    Anemia can increase your risk of dementia, according to new research.
  14. Spotting early signs of dementia

    Online tests and quizzes can't help detect cognitive decline and dementia -- but you can do it on your own. Here's how.
  15. Mixed meds leads to gray matter and memory loss

    Taking three or more drugs at the same time can increase your risk of memory problems and gray matter loss, according to new research.
  16. Reading and writing can slow cognitive decline

    Seniors who read and write more have younger brains and a slower rate of cognitive decline.
  17. Junk food and amyloid beta in the brain

    The saturated fats in junk food can block your brain from the ability to clear away the damage that leads to dementia.
  18. Taking blood pressure can predict dementia risk

    A type of blood pressure reading called central blood pressure can help predict your risk of dementia, according to new research.
  19. B vitamins can help protect against memory problems

    A new study confirms that ordinary B vitamins can fight dementia slowing down the physical deterioration in the brain that goes with it.
  20. Anticholinergic drugs linked to dementia in seniors

    A new study finds that anticholinergic drugs like Tylenol PM and Benadryl could boost your odds of cognitive decline or dementia in as little as two months.

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