Alzheimer's protection

One Nutrient Protects You (and Your Grandchildren) From Alzheimer’s

In All Health Watch, Alzheimer's and Memory, Cognitive Health, Diet and Nutrition, Featured Article

Watching a parent or grandparent suffer with Alzheimer’s is not only sad…it’s terrifying. That’s because you may be looking at your future.

Alzheimer’s can run in families. So if a relative has it, the chances are greater that dementia is in your future as well.

But now new research shows there may be a way to stop Alzheimer’s from being passed from one generation to the next.

The study was conducted at the ASU-Banner Neurodegenerative Disease Research Center. Scientists investigated choline and its effect on Alzheimer’s.

Choline is an essential nutrient. This means you have to get it from your diet. Choline is necessary for maintaining your cell membranes. And it’s needed to produce neurotransmitters for brain and nervous system functions.[i]

The researchers used mice that had been bred to have Alzheimer’s-like symptoms. One group of mice was given a normal diet which contained some choline. The other group received extra choline.[ii]

It turned out that choline stopped Alzheimer’s from being passed from one generation to the next. The offspring of the extra-choline group had better memory.

Not only that, but the cognitive benefit was also seen in the second generation of mice—the offspring of the offspring (the “grandchildren”). This was true even though these animals did not get supplemental choline.

It has already been established that choline fights Alzheimer’s. This study shows that the benefit is passed down to subsequent generations.

2 Ways Choline Fights Alzheimer’s

Choline protects against Alzheimer’s two ways:

  1. It reduces homocysteine. Homocysteine is an amino acid that is a neurotoxin. It’s poisonous to your brain. It can double the risk of Alzheimer’s.
  2. It prevents over-activation of microglia. Microglia cells normally perform a beneficial function by clearing cellular debris from the brain. But microglia go out of control in patients with Alzheimer’s and cause brain inflammation, killing neurons. Choline keeps that from happening.

Choline is critically important for lowering your risk of developing Alzheimer’s. But that’s not all. Choline deficiency can cause muscle damage. And it can lead to fatty liver disease.[iii]

The Food and Nutrition Board recommends a minimum daily choline intake of 425 mg for women and 550 mg for men.

But to promote brain health, a daily dose of one to two grams is recommended. Higher doses can cause headaches.

Foods with the highest choline content per 4-ounce serving include:

  • Beef liver, 470 mg
  • Extra-large egg yolk, 145 mg
  •  Beef, pork, 125 mg
  • Chicken, turkey, 95 mg
  • Shrimp, 90 mg
  • Broccoli (per one-cup serving), 63 mg
  • Milk (one cup), 40 mg

It can be difficult to get enough choline in your diet. That’s why supplements may be your best bet. They are widely available online and at health food stores.

It’s best to start with a low dose (about 50 to 100 mg) and gradually work up from there, doubling your dose each week. Keep in mind that 1,000 mg equal one gram.[iv]

Editor’s Note: If you’re worried about Alzheimer’s, there’s something else you should know… It’s NEVER too late to build a strong brain. That’s why Dr. Nussbaum created his unique Ageless Brain Kit.