• Stacy Seslowsky

Heal the Brain

Alzheimer’s disease is caused by the cumulative effect of insufficient sleep, a low quality diet, glucose dysregulation, high-stress, and over-exposure to environmental toxins. Incredibly, your brain creates protective band aids. These band aids are called amyloid beta plaques and all of our brains have them. Scientists are focused on developing pharmaceutical agents that can remove plaques, but WHAT IF removing the band aid is even more detrimental?

Let’s focus on finding and healing the root cause of this illness rather than treating the symptom.

  • Improve glucose regulation, insulin sensitivity, and blood pressure. Remove simple sugars from the diet

  • Decrease inflammation, rid the body of any underlying infections, improve management of autoimmunity.

  • Promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut and heal/prevent a “leaky gut.”

  • Reduce exposure to toxins (grass-fed meats, organic fruits and vegetables, wild-caught fish, filtered water, use glass instead of plastic, choose low-toxin cosmetics and cleaning products) and promote detoxification of more dangerous elements such as heavy metals and mold.

  • Sweat for 20 minutes in a sauna to release toxins

  • Consume adequate fiber and resistant starch to promote elimination of toxins

  • Exercise to produce pro-oxidants that promote detoxification

  • Address nutrient deficiencies. Focus on nutrient density, quality, and diversity. This is a very big topic and I will give you all the information you need on this in a post coming up very soon

Restore brain function:

Fish oil: Omega-3 fatty acids; 4-6 ounces of wild-caught fatty fish 3 times per week. Consider a high quality fish oil supplement containing 1-2 grams per day of omega-3 fatty acids combined with vitamin E (mixed tocopherols)

MCT oil: 20 grams of MCT oil per day has been demonstrated in randomized, double-blinded placebo controlled clinical trials to significantly improve memory and processing skills in patients with Alzheimer’s disease [1].

Vitamin D: Obtain sun exposure. Consume vitamin D in seafood and organ meats (I am going to post a recipe to make this more palatable). Vitamin D is also found in that fish oil supplement I mentioned above.

Exercise: Move more. Aim to achieve 150 minutes per week (this is just about 20 minutes per day) of walking, stretching, or whatever form of movement you can continue.

Stress reduction: yoga, meditation, music, laughter, and joy. Consider apps such as Calm or headspace. I will post more about these apps in the future.

Sleep: at least 7 hours every night.

Social Interaction: People need people. In randomized controlled trials, elderly people who regularly engaged in social activities had larger brain volume and had improved cognition compared to those who spent more time alone [2].

My Favorite Additions!

All have been studied and shown to beneficially impact brain function.

Mushrooms: Lion's Mane Mushrooms [3].

Dark chocolate (> 70% cacao): 100 g/day consumed in chocolate or cacao powder [4].

Green tea: 2-3 cups per day or 1 gram of green tea extract [5].

He who has a "why" to live for can bear almost any "how."

1. Ota M, Matsuo J, Ishida I, et al. Effects of a medium-chain triglyceride-based ketogenic formula on cognitive function in patients with mild-to-moderate alzheimer’s disease. Neuroscience Letters. 2019;690:232-236.

2. Mortimer JA, Ding D, Borenstein AR, et al. Changes in brain volume and cognition in a randomized trial of exercise and social interaction in a community-based sample of non-demented chinese elders. J ALZHEIMERS DIS. 2012;28(1):757-766.

3. Mori K, Obara Y, Moriya T, Inatomi S, Nakahata N. Effects of hericium erinaceus on amyloid ß(25-35) peptide-induced learning and memory deficits in mice. Biomed Res. 2011;32(1):67-72.

4. Fox M, Meyer-Gerspach A, Wendebourg MJ, et al. Effect of cocoa on the brain and gut in healthy subjects: A randomised controlled trial. Br J Nutr. 2019;121(6):654-661.

5. Mancini E, Beglinger C, Drewe J, Zanchi D, Lang UE, Borgwardt S. Green tea effects on cognition, mood and human brain function: A systematic review. Phytomedicine. 2017;34:26-37.

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