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Supplements may help protect against Alzheimer’s

August 10, 2009 by  

Supplements may help protect against Alzheimer'sA new study has found a combination of supplements containing vitamin D3 and curcumin, a compound found in turmeric, may help shield the brain from the ravages of Alzheimer’s disease.

Turmeric is a perennial herb related to ginger which can be found throughout tropical South Asia. It has been known by alternative medicine practitioners for its antiseptic and antibacterial properties.

A team of scientists from UCLA, UC Riverside and the Human BioMolecular Research Institute found the combination acts by stimulating the immune system to remove amyloid beta from the brain.

Amyloid beta is a peptide that forms the plaques found in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients and is thought to be responsible for the neurodegeneration that accompanies the disease.

The researchers analyzed blood samples from Alzheimer’s patients and from healthy control subjects to isolate monocyte cells, which transform into macrophages that spearhead the immune system’s waste removal process.

Their results suggest curcuminoids boosted the surface binding of amyloid beta to macrophages, and vitamin D stimulated the absorption of amyloid beta in macrophages in a majority of patients.

Dr. Milan Fiala, a researcher at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA expressed hope these natural compounds may open new possibilities in the treatment and prevention of Alzheimer’s disease.

He added, "since vitamin D and curcumin work differently with the immune system, we may find that a combination of the two or each used alone may be more effective, depending on the individual patient."

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  • http://NA John Goodman

    America must go back on The Gold Standard to have a stable country

  • kylie@icarastudy

    This type of research is exactly why clinical studies are so important.
    It is important for patients and families affected by diseases such as Alzheimer’s to consider participating in clinical studies. One such study is the ICARA Study (, whose goal is to explore if an investigational drug, called Bapineuzumab, can help slow the progression of Alzheimer’s Disease. Clinical studies that test new treatments are the best chance we have for fighting this disease. Current therapies for Alzheimer’s treat the symptoms associated with it, not the disease itself.

  • Richard

    For those of us who like prepared mustard, especially brown mustard, how much does it take in a week’s time to offer this benefit? I haven’t run across this information anywhere so far, amd I am

    • Ken Norman

      From the articles I’ve read over the years, turmeric’s curcumin is what is the active ingredient. My understanding is that the curcumin cannot or very poorly passes through the blood brain barrier and is not thought to be very effective because of that. There is research going on regards to a curcumin making it bioavailable to the brain. However, this is expensive to purchase for non-researcher.

    • Gaffer

      More mustard than you can swallow, I believe.

  • Gaffer

    Alzheimers can be cured (if not too far gone) with continuous Niacinimide in small doses according to recent studies. This article is old news.

    • libertytrain

      Gaffer what appears to be old news to you may be new news to many others —

      • Gaffer

        That’s true. My point is that when published, an article should provide a bit of background or context, so that people can better judge just where it all fits. For instance, Alpha Lipoic Acid in doses of 600 mg. daily has been shown to arrest the disease. The real screaming news should be that, for the first time, a cure has been discovered: Niacinimide, which has many other benefits, passes through the blood/brain barrier easily, (a.k.a. Nicotinamide) and has been shown to reverse Alzheimers disease.

        • libertytrain

          Perhaps you are right, if I want more information from a brief article such as these are intended, I just look for more info.

  • Gaffer

    Kylie’s post is self-serving and just plain wrong.


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