The storyline of a dementia diagnosis plays out the same way for families across the world. A loved one’s memory begins to worsen slowly, basic chores that require thought become increasingly difficult; they begin asking the same question over and over before you take them in for a CT to confirm the worst case scenario. The prognosis looks bleak…
However, new studies have found that some dementia diagnosis’ could, in fact, be down to a physical imbalance caused by any number of nutritional imbalances. In fact, one study found that 41% of reported dementia cases that were misdiagnosed. According to one study from UCLA and the Buck Institute for Research on Aging, the decreased mental faculties that we associate with dementia are reversible.
So if you believe you or a loved one might be experiencing the early signs of dementia, take the time to address the following seven imbalances that commonly lead to misdiagnosis, alongside your trip to the doctor.
In almost every study done with sufferers of Alzheimer’s disease doctors have found that their patients have had an extremely low magnesium count. Alongside these facts, there is evidence that people with higher magnesium levels have a lower susceptibility to the disease. It is apparent to those in the medical community that a link exists between the two.
Studies are still being done to substantiate the claims that ‘an increased magnesium intake can help reverse dementia.’ However, for those suffering in the earlier stages of impaired cognitive functionality, it is highly recommended to up your dietary intake of magnesium.
The idea of fish as ‘brain food’ is nothing new, but in recent years the evidence to support the claims have gained further traction. Omega 3 is a fat found in cell membranes, and when it is present in brain cells, it improves both the efficiency and the functionality of our minds.
One study, which used over 2,000 individuals, showed that increasing the amount of omega 3 in the diets of its participants led to a 41% decrease in dementia sufferers. The natural mental decline that comes with age can be slowed by omega 3 intake.
Scientists at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel, produced a study that suggests that a vitamin B12 deficiency produces similar symptoms to dementia. Although further research is needed, the initial evidence shows signs that dementia brought about by this is reversible by increasing your intake through diet and supplements.
Vitamin D has been shown to have a positive effect on degenerative brain conditions in several studies. Among people over the age of 65, the rate of vitamin D deficiency is at a staggering 95% and is believed to be one of the lead causes of dementia. Not only does Vitamin D improve the strength of your brain’s receptors, but it also increases the recovery speed of damaged neurons.
Selenium’s positive effects on Parkinson’s sufferers have been well documented, but the impact they have on dementia patients is only in the early stages of research. One study by the Brazilian Federal University of Sergipe has begun to provide evidence that shows boosting your selenium levels can help fight off and reverse the damaging effects of dementia.
The team found that selenium could contribute to strengthening the dopaminergic cells, which are responsible for dopamine production. The release of higher levels of dopamine into your system then has a positive impact on brain functionality.
As part of the UCLA and Buck Institute study, one of the fundamental ingredients to a dementia reversal diet was probiotics. An imbalance of bacteria in the gut limits the number of nutrients your body can extract from other food. This, in turn, leads you to be unable to process enough of the other vitamins and minerals on this list that are essential to fighting off degenerative brain diseases.
An estimated 10-15% of nursing home patients are believed to be there due to a lack of the thyroid hormone T3, rather than dementia. T3 is responsible for protein synthesis, which affects nearly every system in the body from digestive to neurological. If our hormones are out of balance, it affects our ability to digest new information, causing us to replay old information e.g. asking the same questions over and over.