Researchers are unraveling the mystery of Alzheimer’s. The latest research points to a solution from a natural di-peptide. It’s found in human brain tissues. And it reduces the formation of the amyloid beta protein associated with Alzheimer’s.
It’s also found in meat. So if you’re a meat-eater, your brain may be benefiting from your diet. And if you’re a vegetarian, you could be at risk for cognitive decline.
If there’s one person on top of this subject, it’s Dr. Stefano Sensi. He’s a neurologist at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). He studies Alzheimer’s and other brain disorders. The National Institutes of Health has recognized him for his work. And he has had articles published in many professional journals.
Dr. Sensi co-authored a study about the di-peptide. It appeared in PLoS One, a journal published by the Public Library of Science.
A Closer Look
Scientists are still stumped by Alzheimer’s. They’re not sure how it develops. But they know it has something to do with the buildup of the amyloid beta protein, tangled fibers, and the failure of mitochondria in the brain.
Research has shown that the di-peptide could have an impact on many of those factors. So Sensi and his colleagues took a deeper look.
They worked with a type of mice known for spatial memory decline as they age. One group of mice was treated with the di-peptide. Another group was used as a control. The mice were trained for three days. Then they were given a maze test.
During the training, all of the mice learned at the same rate. But when the researchers tested spatial memory skills, the untreated mice showed short-term memory loss. The treated mice did not.
When the researchers examined the brains of the treated mice, they found a big decrease in the amyloid beta protein. They also saw traces of improvement in mitochondrial function. But they saw no decreases in the tau protein. That’s the protein that leads to twisted masses of fiber in the brain.
The conclusion: The di-peptide did not completely reverse cognitive decline. But it began a trend toward better brain function.
A Glimpse of Hope
The di-peptide that holds such promise is carnosine. It contains two amino acids: beta-alanine and histidine. The brain naturally has high levels of carnosine. But studies have shown that these levels are very low in Alzheimer’s patients.
Carnosine has antioxidant properties that protect against the free radicals and glycemic stress that can lead to inflammation and cell damage. It also has anti-aging properties that extend beyond the brain. It has, for example, been used to reduce wrinkles and make skin smoother.
If you’re a vegetarian you’re not getting any carnosine in your diet. And even if you eat meat, you’re probably not getting enough. So some doctors recommend taking a carnosine supplement.
Dr. Marios Kyriazis is the medical advisor to the British Longevity Society. He’s considered a top expert on longevity. He studied Geriatric Medicine at the Royal College of Physicians. And he trained in the science of aging at the King’s College, University of London. Doses as high as 800 mg per day have been used to benefit children with autism. But for most people, he recommends a daily dose in the 50-200 mg range.
Dr. Ward Dean is a world-renowned expert in anti-aging and life extension. He was a member of the founding Board of Directors of the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine. He points out that doses used in animal experiments were very high. So the compound appears to be safe. But higher doses can cause headaches. So he too recommends sticking with the lower dose.
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To your best health,
Managing Editor, NHD “Health Watch”