Alzheimers and Vitamin Deficiency
Before we delve into Alzheimers and Vitamin deficiency and specifically talk about the vitamins you need to keep in check let’s highlight a pub med study. This study shows evidence and links of nine vitamins/mineral deficiency can disease states. Ref
Furthermore studies have observed people with a high intake of antioxidant vitamins by regular diet or as food supplements generally have a lower risk of major chronic diseases, such as myocardial infarction or stroke, compared to those who are low consumers of antioxidant vitamins.
B12 deficiency (cobalamin)
What’s shocking and alarming is that:
B12 deficiency is strongly linked to memory loss and Alzheimer’s disease.
Raised homocysteine level which is common amongst Alzheimer’s patients is typically due to low levels of B12.
However healthy levels of Folate (B9), vitamins B6 and B12 are required for healthy homocysteine levels too. Deficiency in these vitamins is also associated with coronary heart disease risk. Ref
Homocysteine levels are commonly high in people over 65 and are linked to strokes, as well as coronary artery disease, and dementia, according to an article in alzdiscovery . com
High levels of the amino acid homocysteine have been shown to cause harm by increasing clot formation in the blood vessels in the heart. Recent evidence suggests that vitamins B-12 and folic acid may help prevent heart disease by lowering the body’s levels of homocysteine. Ref
Vitamin B12: Even a mild vitamin B12 deficiency may put older adults at risk for dementia, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
It seems that stomach acid can start to decline during your 50s. Stomach acid is needed to absorb B12. The Institute of Medicine recommends getting your B12 levels checked and supplement if necessary. Recommended dose: 2.4 micrograms daily. Ref
Alzheimers and Vitamin Deficiency – B12
Findings suggest that B12 deficiency may cause reversible dementia in elderly patients. Ref
19 Alzheimer’s patients were treated for B12 Deficiency, Twelve elderly patients with dementia improved with treatment. Seven elderly demented patients did not improve; they deteriorated after 1 year although their levels of cobalamin were normal.
However, 12 DID! Ref
Another study showed that after a minimum of 12 months of cobalamin therapy (b12), 40 of 56 patients (from a nursing home) revealed cognitive improvement.
I was shocked and flawed when I ready this study why is no one talking about it.
What’s more shocking there is a time limit once left too long you cannot reverse it!!!!
“Conclusion: It seems that there may be a time-limited window of opportunity for effective intervention in patients with cognitive dysfunction and low serum cobalamin.” Ref
These findings suggest that cobalamin deficiency (b12) may cause reversible dementia in elderly patients. Ref
Since vitamin B12 is essential for optimal brain function, the Institute of Medicine advises adults over 50 to get most of their B12 from supplements. Recommended dose: 2.4 micrograms daily. Ref
According to WebMD, there are a number of factors that are linked to 12 deficiency:
Atrophic gastritis, in which your stomach lining has thinned pernicious anemia, which makes it hard for your body to absorb vitamin B12.
Conditions that affect your small intestines, such as Crohn’s disease, celiac disease, bacterial growth, or a parasite.
Immune system disorders, such as Graves’ disease or lupus.
Taking certain medications that interfere with the absorption of B12. This includes some heartburn medicines including proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) such as rabeprazole, omeprazole, esomeprazole, lansoprazole, and pantoprazole; H2 Blockers such as cimetidine, famotidine and ranitidine; and certain diabetes medicines such as metformin. Ref
Just because you don’t fall into this category it doesn’t mean you don’t have a deficiency that is why it is important to get checked by your doctor.
The most prudent approach is to make sure you get a daily intake of fruits and vegetables.
Clinical nutrition consultant Linda Rodriguez says the best food Rodriguez also recommends vitamin B-6, B-12 and folic acid supplements because of their probable effect on homocysteine levels and cardiac disease.
Sources of folic acid are citrus fruits, tomatoes, vegetables, whole grain and fortified grain products, beans and lentils. Major sources of B-12 include meat, poultry, fish and dairy products.
However if natural sources of essential nutrients are not sufficient from diet alone, vitamin supplements should be encouraged if deficient, please check with your doctor.
I recommend seeing and Integrated doctor because a GP typically has very little training in nutritional medicine. An integrated doctor is typically trained in both naturopathy (nutrition) and General Practice.
What can you do to reduce your risk against Vitamin Deficiency?
Before you rush and start supplementing for B Vitamins, there one thing needed to get maximum absorption of B Vitamins from your food and supplements. A healthy supply of good bacteria.
If there is an absence of this you may have an ongoing issue.
This underpins your overall health.
The older you are, the more vulnerable your system, if you don’t have sufficient good bacteria you can’t absorb nutrients, so it doesn’t matter what supplements you take. According to nutritionist Jonny Bowden, author of the 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth.
I use Balance D it contains 550 billion good bacteria per serving as well as 3 types of prebiotics, fiber, and vitamin D. Compare this to the average probiotic on the market that has 30 billion bacteria. This ensures I have a healthy supply of good bacteria.
I currently take Encompass 360 and SpectraMaxx. Encompass has a good amount of many of the b vitamins including B12, B6, and B9. Spectramaxx has 74 plus trace minerals, including B12, B9, B6 in liquid form as well as fulvic acid.
It is also worth mentioning pellagra which is vitamin B3 deficiency is linked to dementia too. Ref The Sisel AGE Pill is a powerful B3 Supplement with additional ingredients that support age reversal and a healthy memory.
As previously mentioned there are 9 nine vitamins/minerals associated with disease states so it makes sense to supplement when there are nutritional gaps in your diet.