Can you give examples of common treatments and lifestyle changes that are part of your protocol?
Basically, it’s about diet, exercise, sleep, dealing with stress, brain training, targeted nutritional supplements, detoxification if necessary, and appropriate medication. I’m not against drugs – I’ve been prescribing them as a neurologist for years – but what’s interesting is that the drugs work much better when used as part of an optimal protocol. Bioidentical hormone replacement can be very helpful.
We use a plant-rich, slightly ketogenic diet. Ketosis has been one of the most potent cognitive decline agents because ketone bodies provide the brain with an alternative fuel to glucose. Ten years before Alzheimer’s disease was diagnosed, PET scans show that people have low levels of glucose utilization in the temporal and parietal lobes of the brain. That’s the signature of Alzheimer’s disease.
Fasting for twelve to sixteen hours can help. Regular exercise with aerobic and strength training improves ketosis, insulin sensitivity, blood oxygenation, and blood flow to the brain.
There is evidence that your blood oxygen supply at night is correlated with the size of parts of your brain. If you sleep at night with an oxygen supply of 88 or 90 percent instead of 98 percent, you may have a smaller brain. You want to achieve optimal oxygen levels through sleep apnea and circulation. There are ways to check your oxygen levels at night. One device we recommend is the Beddr SleepTuner, and there are also the Apple Watch and the Fitbit.
For brain training, we recommend the Brain HQ, as data on it has been published.
And then additions. Supplements got a terrible name because some companies make ridiculous claims. We say that nutritional supplements are one of the things you can do to optimize your biochemistry. For example, if you are low on magnesium, which many people with Alzheimer’s do, you can take magnesium threonate.