Boost brain health by living like an Indian

Getting plenty of sun and eating curry are integral parts of Indian culture. Now scientists have found that this combination also helps guard against Alzheimer’s disease.

The biochemical mechanism by which the combination works is through immune system macrophages (1). Vitamin D was found to stimulate type I and II macrophages to break down and clear beta-amyloid plaques through genomic pathways. Curcuminoids, specifically bisdemethoxycurcumin, assisted with stimulating type 1 macrophages through non-geneomic pathways.

Immune therapies to clear beta-amyloid plaque are a new approach that health scientists hope will assist in prevention and treatment of AD.

Because vitamin D and curcumin work in different ways biochemically, both may be used in therapy for most promising effects.

Apart from hereditary implications, obesity, diabetes and hypertension are all risk factors in AD. Other promising dietary interventions are caloric reduction, antioxidant intake from fruits and vegetables, and increased intake of fish-derived omega-3 fatty acids.

Reference List

1. Masoumi A, Goldenson B, Ghirmai S et al. 1alpha,25-dihydroxyvitamin D_3 Interacts with Curcuminoids to Stimulate Amyloid-beta Clearance by Macrophages of Alzheimer’s Disease Patients. J Alzheimers Dis 2009.

See Nutraingredients release.

Published by David Despain, MS, CFS

David is a science and health writer living on Long Island, New York. He's written for a variety of publications including Scientific American, Outside Online, the American Society for Nutrition's (ASN) Nutrition Notes Daily, and Institute of Food Technologists' (IFT) Food Technology magazine and Live! blog. He's also covered new findings reported at scientific meetings including Experimental Biology, AAAS, AOCS, CASW, Sigma Xi, IFT, and others on his personal blog "Evolving Health." David is also an active member of organizations including the National Association of Science Writers (NASW), the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American Society for Nutrition, the Institute of Food Technologists, and the National Audubon Society. David has a master's degree in human nutrition from the University of Bridgeport, and a bachelor's degree in English from University of Illinois at Springfield. He also earned his Certified Food Scientist credential from the Institute of Food Technologists.

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