Category: Science


Alzheimer’s – The Fundamental Principle

Where are we in terms of treating Alzheimer’s disease? To answer this question, I turn to one of the most well-respected, peer-reviewed medical journal dealing with clinical neurology.

In a recent editorial in the journal Neurology, Drs. Michal Schnaider Beeri, and Joshua Sonnen stated:

Despite great scientific efforts to find treatments for Alzheimer disease (AD), only 5 medications are marketed, with limited beneficial effects on symptoms, on a limited proportion of patients, without modification of the disease course. The prevalence of AD doubles every 5 years, reaching the alarming rate of 50% in those aged 85 years and older. In the context of the demographic trends of modern society, where the elderly are the fastest growing segment of the population, identification of new therapeutic targets that may prevent, delay, or cure AD is critically needed.

I so agree. The editorial goes on to describe how the body produces a growth hormone, BDNF, that is associated with reduced risk for cognitive decline and describes how looking at the genetic control for BDNF might enhance cognitive reserve.

This editorial clearly sets the tone for researchers to explore ways of turning on the body’s production of BDNF by developing strategies to turn on the genetic pathways for its production. My sense is that the authors mean pharmaceutical approaches.

This is unfortunate, as dedicated researchers have been publishing terrific research for many years indicating how things like exercise, diet, and even various herbs powerfully augment BDNF production.

It’s clear, for example, that following a Mediterranean diet, along with regular exercise, is associated with a dramatic reduction in risk for dementia, a disease that, as stated above, remains untreatable. This was so eloquently described in the Journal of the American Medical Association in a study entitled, Physical Activity, Diet, and Risk of Alzheimer Disease…and this was published in 2009!

There is so much that we can be doing each and every day to help reduce our Alzheimer’s risk. And I invite you to review the following list of previous blogs and videos.

In closing, remember the words of the Huangdi Neijing from the 4th Century BC:

To cure a disease after it has begun is like digging a hole when one feels thirsty…

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  • Janet

    I am very grateful for any/all information Dr. Perlmutter shares on this subject. I would like to know which herbs augment the production of BDNF ??

    • Alice

      Suzy Cohen has a formula called Memory Script. It contains Gotu Kola (Centella Asiatica) which increases BDNF.

    • David Perlmutter

      Much here on BDNF on the site: https://www.drperlmutter.com/?s=bdnf

  • Jeff

    I brought my motherinlaw from Australia to New Zealand. on the flight over it was very smooth
    flying and she thought we had stopped at a railway station. On arrival she did not recognise my wife Colleen but said she had a daughter in Bundaberg named Colleen.
    She had no idea about using the toilet ect. We took her to a doctor who put this substance (chelation) thru a drip several times a week and after that knew her daughter and could remember places she had been the day before

    • Alex

      Hi Jeff, could you find out which “substance” was applied via IV ? What other protocols has your m-inlaw taken ?

  • Bernard M. Cain

    I am 87 years old and still operate my business. I used to smoke 100 cigarettes a day using one match. At the age of 44 I decided to quit cold turkey because I was coughing from 7 am. until 1 or 2 pm. The coughing continued, so I began to improve my diet, using Wheat Belly Total Health-( His Newest ) by William Davis M.D. and all his older books.
    In 2004 I began reading —
    David Perlmutter, M.D. Books-The better brain book, 2013 Grain Brain and 2017 The Grain Brain whole life plan. I have sent a copy of his new book to every member of my and my wife’s family. and continue to give
    copy’s to friends. My health results continue to improve, eyesight, memory, arthritis and cramps etc. The only problem I have left is balance,
    I need a cane to walk. Possibly exercise and three months more and this will improve. Thanks William and David.. Bernard M. Cain

    • David Perlmutter

      Wishing you continued improvement Bernard.

  • I so agree! Dr David, Please view http://www.CreateK12Change.com As children we are not taught how to memorize so we do not take advantage of the opportunity during K-12 Education to stimulate our brain’s hippocampus. This is my Scientific Hypothesis: At any age, one’s hippocampus can be positively stimulated by learning, practicing, and mastering 1 proven, dependable, and repeatable method for Memorizing and Creating. I’d greatly appreciate an opportunity to speak with you about this. Thank you! Russell

  • Maureen McKerracher

    Your accomplished work and dedication to helping others
    will long be remembered in generations to come!
    You are indeed a visionary of the brain.

  • Loretta

    Good article, good comments. I recently contacted two friends, a little older than I, that I had known for decades. Neither knew me, one on the phone, one in person. This is all so unnecessary if one consumes the right foods, takes the right supplements. It is tragic that our so-called Alzheimer’s experts are still saying there is no known cause or cure for Alzheimer’s. Until they change their tune, the situation will remain largely as it is, or get worse.

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