The Alzheimer’s Association is a comprehensive resource for its community. Being fully aware that individuals are seeking the latest information on treatment, the association has issued a cautionary assessment on alternative treatments.
The primary concern is that no one treatment (even though it may show improvement results) has sufficient research to indicate effectiveness by itself or in conjunction with other “physician prescribed therapy.”
Three of the most common items promoted for reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s are:
- Coenzyme Q 10
- Ginkgo Biloba
- Omega – 3 fatty acids
Coenzyme Q 10
- A natural body producing antioxidant that aids cell function
- It’s natural form – ubiquinone has not be studied for Alzheimer’s effectiveness
- The synthetic version – idebenone was tested and showed no beneficial results
- There is a lack of information on safe dosage levels and possible harmful effects
- A plant extract used in Chinese medicine for centuries
- Thought to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory qualities to protect the cell membrane and regulate neurotransmitter transmission
- A large Natural Institute of Health study over a six years found no significant difference between Ginkgo Biloba and a placebo in reducing risk or prevention
Omega – 3 fatty acids
- A polyunsaturated fat, with two forms DHA and EPA shown to be beneficial for heart disease and stroke
- There is a suggested link between a high intake of Omega-3s and possible reduced risk for dementia or decline in mental skills.
- The Alzheimer’s Disease Cooperative Study showed no significant difference when compared to a placebo, but those without the APOE-e4 Alzheimer’s gene had a “slight benefit.”
- The Memory Improvement with DHA study showed participants with normal age-related cognitive decline to improved on computerized memory test when compared to a placebo group.
- The Alzheimer’s Association is not recommending Omega -3 fatty acids until there is sufficient evidence indicating its effectiveness
For a list of other treatments not currently recommended see www.alz.org-disease_alternative_treatments.asp
Source: Alzheimer’s Association
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