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Brain Matters: Easy Steps for Improving and Retaining Memory

July 16, 2014
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We love science! Mimi recently edited an article for Marin Magazine (her day job) on the Science of Aging featuring the ground breaking research being done at the Buck Institute in Novato, California. In this two part series, writer Ann Wycoff breaks down some of the huge concepts into bite-sized pieces. As part of the research, Dr. Dale Bredesen, professor at the Buck has created these simple steps to take to prevent cognitive disease such as Alzheimer’s disease. Bring this to your next doctor’s appointment.

Some things to check for in routine blood tests:

1. Homocysteine. It is now recommended that we keep our homocysteine (one of the 20 amino acids related with eating meat) levels at 6 or below. Higher homocysteine is associated with more rapid loss of brain tissue with aging.

2. Inflammation. Your hs-CRP (high-sensitivity C-reactive protein) should be less than 1.0. Your A/G (albumin to globulin) ratio should be 1.8 or higher, ideally.  Here are some “I know already” steps to take to reduce inflammation.

3. Vitamin D. Check your optimal levels are now believed to be in the 50-80ng/ml range.

4. Hemoglobin A1c, which gives you an indication of your average glucose over the past 1-2 months and is better than a spot check of your glucose. It is helpful to know the hemoglobin A1c, the fasting insulin, and the fasting glucose, since these offer complementary information. Hemoglobin A1c should be less than 5.6%, fasting blood glucose should be less than 90 mg/dl, and fasting insulin should be less than 5 uIU/ml. These are critical for optimal cognitive function.

You could also try: Computational training for 45 minutes to one hour per day, 5 days per week, has been shown to improve mild cognitive impairment.