Nutrition and the Brain

The International Conference on Nutrition and the Brain in Washington D.C. was July 19-20, 2013 highlighting some important points on the role of nutrition and brain disorders.

1.  Alzheimer’s dementia risk is increased with insulin resistance, obesity, Down’s Syndrome, traumatic brain injuries, uncontrolled hypertension and hyperlipidemia at mid-life.

2.  Apolipoprotein E4 acquired genetically connotes an increased risk.

3.  Aerobic exercise, at least 40 minutes of brisk walking three times a week, decreases risk for Alzheimer’s dementia.

4.  Excess saturated fat intake (>20 g fat, more than half being trans fats) can affect blood brain barrier function and vascular injury.

5.  Trace metals, excess free unbound copper and iron (as defined by elevated ferritin) can increase risk of  free radical damage in the brain.  Trafficking of these metals may be impaired in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease.

6.  Sleep disturbances can increase risk for cognitive impairment.

7.  Cognitive decline following chemotherapy, otherwise known as ‘chemo brain’ is a defined entity thought to be caused by cytokines induced by chemotherapy.  This can persist 5-10 years post chemotherapy.  Cognitive Rehabilitation may be helpful.  Improving Cognitive Function After Cancer by Shelli Kesler, PhD merges cognitive training and rehabilitation exercises in a workbook format.

8.  Neurocysticercosis, a pork tapeworm, is the most common cause of epilepsy, world wide.

9.  Essential tremors have been associated with beta carboline alkaloids which are found in meat products.

10.  B12 deficiency is the most common deficiency in vegans and vegetarians.  It is also commonly seen in >50 year olds.

11.  Leroy Swank, MD, neurologist studied Multiple Sclerosis and a diet devoid of animal protein.  He also advocated a <8g saturated fat diet (animal and vegetable fat).  His research has produced the most significant positive effects to date rivaling any pharmaceutical.  McDougall’s diet is a starch based diet that embodies Dr. Swank’s research.



On July 21, 2013, posted in: Uncategorized by
No Responses to “Nutrition and the Brain”

You must be logged in to post a comment.