Deaths from Alzheimer’s in America have soared 55 percent since 1999, as the burden of this fatal form of dementia grows and the population ages, a federal health report said recently. “Millions of Americans and their family members are profoundly affected by Alzheimer’s disease,” said CDC Acting Director Anne Schuchat.
There is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia, if you listen to your doctor. The most the western medical establishment can say is, “Age is the greatest risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease.” More than five million people in the United States are living with Alzheimer’s, and that number could balloon to 16 million by 2050, according to the Alzheimer’s Association.
Kanemasa Ito compares caring for his wife Kimiko to waging a daily war with the devil. The woman he loved has all but disappeared — lost to dementia, she can no longer eat, bathe, or go to the toilet alone. “There is a demon inside her head,” Ito told AFP, articulating the dramatic change in the person he’d built a life with, while she babbles nonsensically. Ito’s wife was just 54 when she was first diagnosed. Now some 15 years on, he is close to breaking point trying to care for her and manage the disease.
For 3 weeks now, we are giving my mum almost the full protocol, and the changes that are already happening are amazing compared to her terrible state she was in when starting. We are gradually taking her off the conventional medications (which include anti-psychotic drug, anti-depression drug and another drug “for Alzheimer”)
We are just in the beginning of this journey and she talks again – with full sentences. Her shuffling walk is getting much better, she is standing almost straight and the most important thing – she is much more happy and connected to her environment. She is laughing a lot and making jokes, enjoying the people around her, enjoying films again and most of the day she is not a zombie at all! The day she remembered my name and called for me, I cried half the day.
The New York Times published an article about a study from the New England Journal of Medicine titled Alzheimer’s Drugs Offer No Help. “The drugs most commonly used to soothe agitation and aggression in people with Alzheimer’s disease are no more effective than placebos for most patients, and put them at risk of serious side effects, including confusion, sleepiness and Parkinson’s disease-like symptoms, researchers are reporting today.”
Many researchers, with good reason, feel that the actual cause of Alzheimer’s disease is due to toxic metals that leaches from mercury-silver amalgam dental fillings. Dr. Boyd Haley, Dr. Murray Vimy, a dental researcher from the University of Calgary, Canada, and member of the World Health Organization (WHO), and Dr. Fritz L. Lorscheider reasoned that because mercury vapor from amalgam fillings is absorbed into the sinuses and goes through the blood stream directly to the brain it also is a basic cause of Alzheimer’s.
Dr. J.L. Glick in 1990 showed a significant decrease in the frequency of intracellular magnesium deposits in neurons of Alzheimer disease patients as compared with control patients. Dr. Glick suggests that Alzheimer’s disease involves a defective transport process characterized by both an abnormally low Mg incorporation and an abnormally high Al incorporation into brain neurons.
In 1998 Julie Varner and two colleagues published research on the effects of aluminum-fluoride and sodium-fluoride on the nervous system of rats. They concluded, “Chronic administration of aluminum-fluoride and sodium-fluoride in the drinking water of rats resulted in distinct morphological alterations of the brain, including the effects on neurons and cerebral-vasculature.” Fluoride, lead and aluminum together can be thought of as a devils triangle that act not only to reinforce each other’s toxicity but also to greatly amplify the toxicity of mercury.
In a Feb. 2005 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience researchers discovered that many Alzheimer’s patients lose the function of important cannabinoid brain receptors, which seem to guard against cognitive decline. They further discovered in a rat study involving synthetic marijuana that when these brain receptors were working, they reduced the brain inflammation that is associated with Alzheimer’s.
The central nervous system is extremely sensitive and reacts to a combination of factors that allopathic doctors do not address. Toxic exposures, nutritional deficiencies and emotional anguish converge on the nervous system. Toxic substances such as mercury, which the body is chronically exposed to, accumulates in the brain, pituitary gland, CNS, liver, kidneys, etc. and can damage, inhibit, and cause imbalances at very low levels of exposure. Heavy metals do cause neurological, immunological, and metabolic damage.
Research from the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California, reveals that THC can block the formation of brain clogging amyloid plaque in parts of the brain important for memory and cognition. Dr. Kim Janda showed that THC preserves brain levels of the key neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Janda’s group reported in the journal Molecular Pharmaceutics their experiments showing that THC prevents formation of the amyloid plaques that are a hallmark of AD and its damage to the brain.
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Each individual will be seen to have their own unique combination of neurological, endocrine, and enzymatic imbalances along with auto immunities that result from the above factors. Symptoms will vary resulting in different diagnoses: multiple sclerosis (MS), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Alzheimer’s disease (AD), or Parkinson’s disease (PD), systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), and even rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).
Magnesium as the Premier Medicine for Neurological Disorders
Even a mild deficiency of magnesium can cause increased sensitivity to noise, nervousness, irritability, mental depression, confusion, twitching, trembling, apprehension, and insomnia. Imagine being able to clear these symptoms without dangerous drugs! Magnesium is the premier medicine for depression, sleep disturbances, emotionally disturbed behavior, and neurological diseases because of its strong positive effect in calming and nourishing the nervous system.
Magnesium is essential in regulating central nervous system excitability thus magnesium-deficiency may cause aggressive behavior, depression, or suicide. Magnesium calms the brain and people do not need to become severely deficient in magnesium for the brain to become hyperactive. One study confirmed earlier reports that a marginal magnesium intake overexcites the brain’s neurons and results in less coherence–creating cacophony rather than symphony—according to electroencephalogram (EEG) measurements.
Evidence is mounting that low levels of magnesium contribute to the heavy metal deposition in the brain that precedes Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer’s. Many of the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease can be overcome with high magnesium supplementation. In a trial with 30 epileptics, 450 mg of magnesium supplied daily successfully controlled seizures. Another study found that the lower the magnesium blood levels the more severe was the epilepsy.
Magnesium has been seen to attenuate increased blood-brain barrier permeability during insulin-induced hypoglycemia in animal studies. Magnesium has its important role at the BBB and researchers think that this metal protects brain tissue against the effects of cerebral ischemia, brain injury and stroke through its actions as a calcium antagonist and inhibitor of excitatory amino acids.
Magnesium is essential in regulating central nervous system excitability thus magnesium-deficiency may cause aggressive behavior, depression, or suicide. Magnesium calms the brain and people do not need to become severely deficient in magnesium for the brain to become hyperactive. One study confirmed earlier reports that a marginal magnesium intake overexcites the brain’s neurons and results in less coherence–creating cacophony rather than symphony–according to electroencephalogram (EEG) measurements.
A low level of magnesium overexcites the
brain’s neurons and results in less coherence.
Magnesium deficiency or imbalance plays a crucial role in the symptoms of mood disorders. Observational and experimental studies have shown an association between magnesium and aggression, anxiety, ADHD bipolar disorder, depression and schizophrenia.
Magnesium and MS
Although the cause remains officially unknown, multiple sclerosis is widely thought to begin as an autoimmune inflammation with magnesium deficiency possibly at the core. In some studies, it has been shown that there was a lower value of magnesium in MS patients than that seen in control cases. The most marked reduction of magnesium content was observed in CNS white matter including demyelinated plaques of MS samples.
Magnesium protects the cells from aluminum, mercury, lead, cadmium, beryllium and nickel. Evidence is mounting that low levels of magnesium contribute to the heavy metal deposition in the brain that precedes Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer’s. Research has shown that the symptoms of MS are very similar to mercury poisoning. Mercury contamination is one major cause of inflammation in our bodies.
Dr. Mazur says, “Magnesium deficiency contributes to an exaggerated response to immune stress and oxidative stress is the consequence of the inflammatory response.” Magnesium deficiencies feed the fires of inflammation and pain. Magnesium modulates cellular events involved in inflammation. Increases in extracellular magnesium concentration cause a decrease in the inflammatory response.
Marijuana as a Premier Medicine for Neurological Disorders
Scientists have long been exploring the potential of cannabinoids to inhibit neurodegeneration. A 2003 study that the American MS Society calls “interesting and potentially exciting” demonstrated that cannabinoids were able to slow the disease process in mice by offering neuroprotection against EAE. After analyzing the findings, authors at London’s Institute of Neurology concluded, “In addition to symptom management, cannabis may also slow down the neurodegenerative processes that ultimately lead to chronic disability in multiple sclerosis and probably other diseases.”
Anecdotal reports and a small controlled study have reported that cannabis improved spasticity and, to some extent, improved tremor in MS patients. Many studies of the pharmacology of cannabis have identified effects on motor systems of the central nervous system that have the potential of affecting tremor and spasticity. A recent carefully controlled study of the efficacy of THC in experimental allergic encephalomyelitis, the animal model of MS, demonstrated significant amelioration of these two MS symptoms. Moreover, cannabis has demonstrated effects on immune function that also have the potential of reducing the autoimmune attack that is thought to be the underlying pathogenic process in MS.
MS patients report that cannabis has a startling and profound effect on muscle spasms, tremors, balance, bladder control, speech and eyesight. Many wheelchair-bound patients report that they can walk unaided when they have smoked cannabis.
Numerous case studies, surveys and double-blind studies have reported improvement in patients treated with cannabinoids for symptoms including spasticity, chronic pain, tremor, sexual dysfunction, bowel and bladder dysfunctions, vision dimness, dysfunctions of walking and balance (ataxia), and memory loss. Cannabinoids have been shown in animal models to measurably lessen MS symptoms and may halt the progression of the disease.
Within this group, thirty-nine patients (46%) reported that their Parkinson’s disease symptoms in general were relieved after they started using cannabis. In terms of specific symptoms, 26 (31%) reported an improvement in tremor while at rest, and 38 (45%) experienced a relief of bradykinesia. Relief of muscle rigidity was reported by 32 (38%), and 12 (14%) said they had an improvement in levodopa-induced dyskinesias.
Iodine as a Premier Medicine for Neurological Disorders
“Iodine is found in large quantities in the brain and the ciliary body of the eye. Lack of iodine may be involved in production of Parkinson’s disease and glaucoma,” writes Dr. James Howenstein. “In the brain, iodine concentrates in the substantia nigra, an area of the brain that has been associated with Parkinson’s disease,” says Dr. David Brownstein.
The hypothesis that Parkinson’s disease may be linked to soil and hence dietary iodine deficiency, associated with glaciation, is not new. In 1987, De Pedro-Cuesta concluded that Parkinsonism had the strongest links with “early life exposure to a geochemical imbalance, related to the last glaciation, associated to iodine washing out, present in soil, water and diet.”
De Pedro-Cuesta reached this conclusion based on Parkinson’s disease prevalence and mortality in selected age groups and similarities between current levodopa use and goiter distribution during the period 1920 to 1935. As early as 1959, Warren also argued that multiple sclerosis was more common in regions that had suffered recent continental glaciations where it tends to develop most frequently in individuals who, as newborns, were fed milk from iodine-deficient cows. It has been hypothesized that a lack of iodine in fodder deprives cattle of thyroxin, a deficiency that in turn prevents the conversion of carotene to vitamin A.
Milk lacking this vitamin also lacks the essential fatty acids because the latter, which form the main constituents of the myelin sheath, are oxidized rapidly in the absence of vitamin A. Certainly, a thyroid deficiency in rats has been linked to reduced myelin formation.
Rat studies indicate that iodine deficiencies can cause reduced brain weight, limited myelin formation, retarded neuronal maturation, a lowering of the production of various enzymes and slowing of the rates of protein and RNA synthesis. Similar processes appear to occur in many neurological diseases.
Long-term iodine deficiency appears to be linked to abnormalities in the dopaminergic system including an increased number of dopamine receptors.
The Sun and Vitamin D
A recent meta-analysis published in the Nutrition Journal discovered that lower vitamin D status is associated with an increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. An estimated 47.5 million people suffer from dementia worldwide, with Alzheimer’s disease accounting for about 60-70% of the cases. Despite large research efforts devoted to finding treatments, a cure for dementia has yet to be discovered. Therefore, prevention strategies are in urgent need. Studies have found a high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency among patients with AD or dementia.
This essay is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to understanding and dealing with the human nervous system. Using Heart Rate Variability (HRV), we can measure and contrast the activities of the central, parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems and see clearly when stress is creating major imbalances. Parasympathetic shut down correlates directly with vagus nerve inflammation.
Avoiding or treating neurological disorders is best served by going back to the basics. Heavy administration of magnesium is the first stop as is the use of medical marijuana and iodine. Getting plenty of sun and exercise also helps as does reducing the body’s acidity through the use of bicarbonates. Getting a handle on one’s breathing is also a good idea because it directly affects how our nervous system behaves. Chelation of heavy metals is also crucial.