I have an acquaintance who is a psychiatrist living in New York who is originally from Russia. I met him through Ellina Graypel, who is a folk singer from there and a very good friend of mine. He does a lot of work with Alzheimer’s and elderly dementia patients. He has a novel theory about helping these patients. He has written a series of exercises that increase hand-eye coordination. His theory is that there are dominant pathways in the brain that develop when we are infants and deteriorate when we get older. By reestablishing these pathways we can help these patients live normal lives.
It’s sort of like the theory that as far as the brain is concerned, you have to use it or lose it. Studies have shown that older adults who do crossword puzzles and other forms of mental activity are able to hold on to their mental sharpness longer.
Dr. Bragin also advocates the use of music and diet to help with the exercises. The diet also includes nutritional supplements. According to the Healthy Planet Magazine: “Alzheimer’s disease affects 10% of adults by the age of 65, and 30% over the age of 85, in the United States. Diet and nutrition imbalances are found to be involved with the development of this disease. A relationship with cardiovascular disease risk factors, diabetes, and the increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease has been observed in some studies, indicating that a healthy diet and physically active lifestyle may the lower risk of these conditions.”
“In a dietary study including more than 2,100 New York City residents aged 65 and older, over the course of approximately four years, 253 developed Alzheimer’s disease.”
It seems that a diet that is healthy for your heart is also healthy for your brain. Those who ate a diet that included the most salad dressing, nuts, fish, tomatoes, vegetables and poultry had a 38% lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. It also helps to avoid organ meat, red meat, and processed foods.
There may also be a link between mental function and food allergies. One New York physician reported that after a Sunday dinner of chicken, which he discovered that he was allergic to, he had a great deal of difficulty concentrating on Monday. Unfortunately this information that allergies may cause a number of other serious diseases like epilepsy, migraine, Meniere’s syndrome, Multiple Sclerosis, and Guillain-Barre Syndrome, has been lost.