research we are doing and the reports we make are based on
the following positions, assumptions, methods and
1. There is no cure for Alzheimer's.
is as yet no cure for Alzheimer's Disease. If you get it, it is a
2. The cure will be in the
do not believe that an eventual cure will reverse the neural
degeneration or its effects in then-existing Alzheimer's
indications are that the "cure" will be in the prevention of
Alzheimer's in people who have either not yet shown symptoms
of the disease or whose symptoms are still
this we believe that Alzheimer's will prove to be a disease
like hydrophobia (rabies) or Smallpox, in that the "cure"
will be in the prevention. Once the symptoms become apparent
it is essentially too late to do anything about
3. There is no "silver Bullet".
disease is complex, with many factors contributing to its
onset or avoidance. There is not a "silver
bullet" to stop it dead in its tracks in an
instant. It does
not appear likely that such a silver bullet will ever be
found or that it even exists.
4. Our approach: reverse correlation
people get Alzheimer's, some don't. Of those that get it, some
get it earlier in life than others. Our approach is to study
the differences between different groups, try to identify the
things that the non-Alzheimer's people did right, and copy
that into our own lives. It is essentially a reverse
correlation analysis of controllable contributing
5. There are both genetic and environmental factors to
of the reason that some people get Alzheimer's is genetic,
and we cannot control that. However, another large part
of the reasons that one person gets Alzheimer's and another
does not, relates to things we CAN control. Our work deals with these
controllable factors. Its prevention and
avoidance will require a multi-faceted program using all the
probably-useful contributing factors that we can
6. We deal with probabilities.
we are dealing with here are probabilities. Probabilities are best
dealt with using statistics. Statistical analysis is the
science of large numbers. We could say, for example,
that you are MORE likely to die in an auto accident if you
are NOT using your seatbelt than if you ARE using
similar reasoning and available statistical data we could
reach other conclusions and come up with
We could say, for example, that to avoid being a highway
fatality, drive a Volvo or SUV, wear your seatbelts, don't
drink and drive, don't exceed the speed limit and take a
course in defensive driving. If you do all these things
you would probably reduce your chances of dying in a traffic
accident by as much as two-thirds or more!
this "2/3 or more" is true in groups of, say, 10,000
you compare two groups of motorists, over a five year period:
one which took all these steps and another that took none of
them, you would find that there were three times as many
traffic fatalities in the second group than there were in the
from an indivicual point of view, many that took none of
these precautions will not die in a traffic
who took all of these precautions, and more, will STILL die
in traffic accidents.
is no absolute guarantee for the individual driver either
way... but it IS the way to bet! Take the
preventive steps and your probabilities improve; the odds
will be on your side. You would be more likely to survive and
what we are trying to do in avoiding Alzheimer's is to
improve our odds, to "stack the deck in our favor" as much as
we can. We
want to put ourselves into the group that has the highest
probability of NOT contracting Alzheimer's
7. Alzheimer's starts early in life.
apparently starts years before the symptoms become
Therefore its prevention should begin early in life, when you
are in your 40's or maybe even your 30's.
study led by researchers at the Banner Good Samaritan Medical
Center in Phoenix showed that Alzheimer’s disease starts
decades before showing any symptoms. Young patients who had a
mutation of the APOE gene associated with Alzheimer’s
underwent brain PET scans. The scans revealed some of
the same metabolic changes as Alzheimer’s patients. The
changes were described as “reduced brain activity in the same
areas that are affected in the disease for older patients.”
The study hypothesized that because brain changes occur many
years before the manifestation of Alzheimer’s disease
symptoms, prevention treatment should begin at an early age
to avoid the characteristic damage of plaques and
this we conclude that, especially in the area of lifestyle
decisions, you should start early. Of course, we cannot change
the past, but we must not put off starting until some future
date. If you
don’t start to prepare yourself before the first visible
symptoms of Alzheimer’s become evident, it will most probably
be too late.
first thing we need is knowledge. We need to know what our
options are and what effect our daily decisions will likely
have on our future.
8. We give no medical advice.
we want to point out that we are not giving medical advice
here. We are not
medical doctors or pharmacists. We are highly concerned
citizens, at risk for Alzheimer's, ourselves. From this viewpoint of
intense interest and concern, we analyze studies,
research findings, statistics and the observations and
suggestions of experts.
these analyses we synthesize and summarize current
knowledge and belief to sort out what is potentially useful
and what is not. From the useful knowledge gleaned we
make recommendations of lifestyle, stress management,
nutrition changes…. whatever appears to be
changes constitute constructive, positive steps that we
ourselves take, that anyone can take. Steps that we believe
will increase our chances and your chances of
avoiding Alzheimer's disease.
We tell you what useful Alzheimer's disease research
results we have found, what we believe to be useful, what we are
doing about it. Then you decide, based on the evidence and
the costs versus the benefits, if you would like to do the same
thing or something similar.