How to Improve Our the Odds of Avoiding Dementia or Alzheimer’s

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by Nils Osmar. Updated April 7, 2024.  Medical Disclaimer

There’s no known cure for Alzheimer’s. But there’s evidence that the following interventions can help prevent it, and may also help prevent other forms of dementia:

  1. Drinking coffee or cocoa (with the caffeine intact) (See study: Caffeine as a protective factor in dementia and Alzheimer’s disease )
  2. Drinking green tea and white tea. Its effects are similar to those of coffee, though less robust. See study: Green Tea Intake and Risks for Dementia, Alzheimer’s Disease, Mild Cognitive Impairment, and Cognitive Impairment: A Systematic Review
  3. Exercising (in particular – resistance training and HIIT) See study: Resistance training promotes cognitive and functional brain plasticity in seniors with probable mild cognitive impairment: A 6-month randomized controlled trial
  4. Eating a very low sugar diet – which includes avoiding excess fructose. See study: Sugary diet may increase risk of Alzheimer’s disease . Next time you find yourself rationalizing that , “Oh, it’s just dessert. It’s just a cookie. It’s just a piece of cake. It’s just a bowl of ice cream. It’s just a plate of spaghetti. I’m sure it won’t do any harm” – remember that it’s very possible that it will. When you avoid sugary foods and starchy foods that are metabolized like sugar, you’re protecting the long-term health of your brain. When you indulge in them, you’re likely setting yourself up for harm.
  5. Eating lots of fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel and sardines – i.e., getting lots of Omega 3, and minimizing our consumptoin of Omega 6. See article: Study links omega-3s to improved brain structure, cognition at midlife
  6. Not smoking. Smokers are 40% more likely to develop Alzheimer’s. See article: All you need to know about smoking and dementia)
  7. Using an air purifier. Dirty air is clearly associated with greater odds of dementia. Houseplants (which supposedly clean the air) won’t help very much. But air purifiers can and will. See article: USC studies show that clean air matters for a healthy brain
  8. If we’re overweight or obese, losing the excess fat. Obesity has been shown in many studies to be a factor in developing dementia. The mantra which is gaining momentum in online forums that “It’s impossible to lose weight, and you shouldn’t try anyway, obesity is beautiful, you can be morbidly obese and still be healthy, and it’s all genetic anyway, no one can lose excess body fat” is nonsensical, and promotes dementia. See study: Obesity associated with a higher risk for dementia, new study finds
  9. Doing some fasting and time restricted eating. It has benefits for brain health that go far beyond fat loss. See study: Intermittent fasting protects against the deterioration of cognitive function
  10. Taking phosphatidyl serine – one of the few brain supplements that’s been tested in human studies and shown to improve stress, memory issues, attention disorders, age-related cognitive decline, and dementia.
  11. Taking low dose lithium, an inexpensive supplement that appears to be protective against dementia under some circumstances. See study.
  12. Avoiding falls and concussions. Head injuries also appear to increase our odds of dementia. See study.

Not Medical Advice

This post is not intended as, and should not be taken as, medical advice. I’m not advising that people follow any particular regimen, eat any particular diet or take any particular supplements, just sharing information and reporting on what I’m doing. All supplements can have side effects; I would encourage people to research both possible benefits and side effects before starting on any supplementation regimen.  See full Medical Disclaimer

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