Nov 252013
 
Five Tips to Help Caregivers Get Their Zzzs

When it comes to caring for a parent, spouse or other loved one, sleep is not for beauty. It is essential to maintain health and the energy needed to be a caregiver. Uninterrupted, restorative sleep (7 to 9 hours) is recommended by most experts. But for many of the nation’s 65 million family caregivers, sleep is an elusive luxury.  In fact, a National Alliance for Caregiving (NAC) study on caregiver health risks found 87 percent of those [...]

Nov 142013
 
A Tribute to My Care Partner

Next month, Mary Margaret and I will have been together 50 years. She is a very positive gal, extremely caring and inclusive with her friends. I am not always a social animal. Mary, however, is very outgoing and makes new friends easily. These days, we are attached at the hip… but it wasn’t always this way. In 2009, I was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. After I received the diagnosis our lives changed. At the time, Mary [...]

Oct 232013
 
Timely Topic: Flu Vaccine Not Linked to Alzheimer’s

‘Tis the season for flu vaccine! Every year we get calls from people asking if there is a link between the flu vaccine and Alzheimer’s disease. This is an idea that came about more than a decade ago and has been debunked many times over. Fact:  Several mainstream studies link flu shots and other vaccinations to a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease and overall better health! For example: –   A report in the Nov. 3, 2004, Journal [...]

Sep 252013
 
Is Alzheimer's Really Linked to Poor Dental Health?

British scientists recently reported finding signs of the gum-disease bacterium  (P. gingivalis) in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients. The new study is being widely reported as adding to a growing body of evidence linking periodontal (gum) disease to an increased risk for Alzheimer’s disease. However, such data needs to be considered very carefully. In fact, what the study found was that substances on the surface of the bacterium (lipopolysaccharides) were present in the brain tissue [...]

Sep 242013
 
There Are Many Reasons I Walk to End Alzheimer's

The first change I noticed in my dad was his inability to write out checks.  I stopped by his office one day, and he was sitting at his desk with the checkbook open.  Several balled-up checks were scattered on his desk. He was slow to speak, but finally admitted that he could not write out the check correctly. On one check, he had transposed the numbers for the amount to be paid.  On another check, [...]

Aug 302013
 
Why I Walk to End Alzheimer’s

Why do I Walk to End Alzheimer’s? Good question. I don’t do it for me. I walk because I have a husband who has younger-onset Alzheimer’s disease. I walk because my husband’s brother passed away from younger-onset Alzheimer’s disease. I walk because their Mom passed away from younger-onset Alzheimer’s disease —and possibly their Grandmother and Uncle. My husband is 51. His brother was 52. I walk because I have two children, a 9-year-old son and [...]

Aug 232013
 
Alzheimer’s, Nana and Me

I was 9 when I saw my mom and my Da crying, and I thought my Nana must be sick.  When I asked no one would tell me anything. Then one weekend, when Nana and I were going to watch movies all night and eat popcorn, I asked her if she was sick.  She explained to me that her body was not sick, but her brain was. It was the first time I had ever [...]

Aug 152013
 
Can Chocolate Reduce the Risk of Alzheimer’s?

Like most people, I love chocolate and would be thrilled if it could be the next healthy brain food! And in fact, a new study claims chocolate — cocoa specifically — might help improve cognitive functioning. As delicious as these results sound, there are some serious flaws in the methodology. Background This study looked at neurovascular coupling (NVC), which is a term for the close relationship between brain activity and brain cerebral blood flow. As different areas of [...]

Aug 132013
 
 Dietary Saturated Fat & the Risk of Alzheimer's

In a study published online in JAMA Neurology, researchers found that dietary saturated fat reduced the body’s levels of apolipoprotein E, also called ApoE, which helps remove amyloid beta proteins out of the brain. Essentially, people who received a high-saturated-fat, high-sugar diet showed a change in their ApoE, such that the ApoE would be less able to help clear the amyloid. ApoE4 status is associated with an increased risk of cognitive decline and elevated brain amyloid deposition. [...]

Jul 242013
 
Highlights From the World’s Largest Conference for Dementia Research

As a scientist and administrator, and as immediate past chair of the Alzheimer’s Association Medical and Scientific Advisory Council and a current member of the Association’s Board of Directors, I have seen the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC®) grow into the world’s largest and most prestigious conference of its kind. It brings together more than 5,000 researchers from around the world to report and discuss groundbreaking research and information on the cause, diagnosis, treatment and prevention [...]

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