Alzheimer’s is a disease that affects more than 5 million people in North America. At different stages of the illness, people will forget the names of their loved ones, life long memories and even control over their motor skills. Although millions of dollars have been spent in finding a cure, or even a way to slow down its progression, there is still much to be learned about Alzheimer’s and its triggers. Researchers have discovered that there are multiple factors that can increase someone’s chances at developing this illness- such as such as genetic make up, environmental surroundings and even lifestyle choices.
With that being said, one specific area worth looking at is dietary restrictions and eating habits of people in all stages of Alzheimer’s. Despite the lack of concrete data, scientists are looking at specific foods that could potentially affect the illness’ progression in individuals. Tara Harwood works as a dietician at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, and in her line of work she has found a some correlation between the intake of Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Vitamin B and the decline of Alzheimer’s.
Another theory that is being looked at is the absorption of foods that are rich in antioxidant properties. Free radicals that are found in people with this disease weaken and destroy cells, which in turn further damages the body’s ability to fight the disease and stop its progression. The neurology department at Columbia University is studying the “Mediterranean diet,” which primarily consists of a wide variety of vegetables and fruits, healthy oils, fish and much lower intake of heavy meats like pork and beef.
The information towards dietary restrictions is still very vague and in the earliest stages of experimentation, however, there are still reliable clues one can follow in order to cope with Alzheimer’s. Leading healthy lifestyles, remaining active, eating foods that are low in saturated fats, and taking daily vitamins is a good way to defend yourself from the disease and hopefully slow its progression.