UCLA scientists have developed a 36-point therapeutic program they say can reverse dementia-related memory loss. A study on the program, published in the current online edition of the journal Aging, found that nine of 10 patients who underwent the program reported improvements in memory and recall.
It is among the first programs shown to reverse memory loss, according to researchers who created it from the University of California-Los Angles Mary S. Easton Center for Alzheimer's Disease Research and the Buck Institute for Research on Aging, Medical Xpress reported.
The program involves comprehensive changes in diet, brain stimulation, exercise, optimization of sleep, specific pharmaceuticals and vitamins, and multiple additional steps that affect brain chemistry.
Lead researcher Dale Bredesen called the preliminary findings “very encouraging.” But he added: “At the current time the results are anecdotal, and therefore a more extensive, controlled clinical trial is warranted.”
Bredesen's approach is personalized to the patient, based on extensive testing to determine how well his or her brain is functioning. As one example, he detailed the therapy designed for a patient with a demanding job who was forgetting her way home and having other memory problems.
The therapeutic program designed for her included:
- Eliminating all simple carbohydrates, leading to a weight loss of 20 pounds.
- Eliminating gluten and processed food from her diet, with increased vegetables, fruits, and non-farmed fish.
- Practicing yoga and meditation, to help her reduce stress.
- Taking melatonin each night.
- Increasing her sleep from four to five hours per night to seven to eight hours per night.
- Taking methylcobalamin, vitamin D3, fish oil, and CoQ10 each day.
- Improving her oral hygiene using an electric flosser and electric toothbrush.
- Reinstating hormone replacement therapy that had been discontinued.
- Fasting for a minimum of 12 hours between dinner and breakfast, and for a minimum of three hours between dinner and bedtime.
- Exercising at least 30 minutes, four to six days per week.
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