Are too many patients focused on the physical body and improving fitness and appearances? What about brain health?

Dementia is a brain disorder that seriously affects a person’s ability to carry out daily activities. The most common form of dementia among older people is Alzheimer’s disease (AD), which initially involves the parts of the brain that control thought, memory, and language. Although scientists are learning more every day, right now they still do not know what causes AD, and there is no cure.

AD is named after Dr. Alois Alzheimer, a German doctor. In 1906, Dr. Alzheimer noticed changes in the brain tissue of a woman who had died of an unusual mental illness. He found abnormal clumps (now called amyloid plaques) and tangled bundles of fibers (now called neurofibrillary tangles). Today, these plaques and tangles in the brain are considered signs of AD.

Scientists also have found other brain changes in people with AD. Nerve cells die in areas of the brain that are vital to memory and other mental abilities, and connections between nerve cells are disrupted. There also are lower levels of some of the chemicals in the brain that carry messages back and forth between nerve cells. AD may impair thinking and memory by disrupting these messages.

The Alzheimer’s Association estimates that 10 million baby boomers will develop Alzheimer’s disease in the United States, according to their new report released last week in 2008 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures

Related Supplements for Dementia (review Natural Standard Database for information)

Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA)


Coenzyme Q10

Ethylenediaminetetraacetic Acid (EDTA)

Flaxseed Oil

Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA)


Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-6 Fatty Acids

Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)

Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)

Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)

Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)

Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid)

Vitamin E

Vitamin H (Biotin)



Related Herbs (review Natural Standard Database for information on each)

American Ginseng

Evening Primrose



Ginkgo Biloba


Lemon Balm


Siberian Ginseng 

St. John’s Wort



The Better Brain Book, David Perlmutter, MD, FACN and Carol Colman

Alzheimer’s Association 

Spotlight on Aging Research (SOAR): News and Notes from the National Institute on Aging

Alzheimer’s Disease Education and Referral (ADEAR) Center to find current, comprehensive Alzheimer’s disease (AD) information and resources from the National Institute on Aging (NIA)

National Institute on Aging, U.S. National Institutes of Health 

Clinical Trials Index for Brain Health 

National Advisory Council on Aging (NACA) Meetings 

Working With Your Older Patients: A Clinicians Handbook 


Alzheimer’s Association, International Conference on Alzheimer’s Disease 2008, July 26-31, 2008, McCormick Place, Chicago

16th Annual Alzheimer’s Association Dementia Care Conference, August 24–27, 2008, Hyatt Regency, Orange County, California

20th Annual Alzheimer’s Association Public Policy Forum, May 12-14, 2008, Washington, D.C.

Alzheimer’s Association International Conference on the Prevention of Dementia, Prevention 2009, June 3-6, 2009, Washington, D.C.