Barking Up the Wrong Tree

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Oops.  It seems the orthodoxy regarding Alzheimer’s had it wrong.  The medical establishment has accepted – to the point of dogma – the amyloid hypothesis. Namely, that accumulating clumps of beta-amyloid are the cause of Alzheimer’s.

An investigation by Science has found that the images used to make this claim in the seminal 2006 study published in Nature were doctored.

I’m keeping this practical in terms of what you can do with this information. I’m not going to speculate as to how or why that was done.

It does puzzle me though, how me, a lowly fitness professional as far back as 2009, knew this was wrong. I was in the early days of my interest and study of brain health. The first book I read that helped light the spark of curiosity was a book called Save Your Brain by Michael Colgan.

The book lays out how excessive inflammation and the concurrent damage to the DNA of our mitochondria (the energy-producing parts of cells.)  We have further come to understand that a high load of environmental toxins can contribute to and accelerate this excessive inflammatory, immune response and damage the brain.

The flawed research with the doctored images set in motion countless wasted research years and dollars which may have been spent more productively. And in human terms, this likely magnified the suffering of innumerable people around the world.

Even worse, we didn’t need to wait for the expose.  There have been numerous drug trials that didn’t reduce Alzheimer’s after reducing beta-amyloid in the brain. Further, it has been shown that there are a sizable number of people with Alzheimer’s that have little to no beta-amyloid accumulation.

And yet, the medical establishment kept barking up the wrong tree. 

Lifestyle is how you treat Alzheimer’s. And the best time to administer the treatment is in the “prevention stage.” Failing that, doing lifestyle behaviors right as rapidly as possible after diagnosis is the next best thing. 

The same things that help us manage runaway inflammation – physical activity, healthy eating, stress management, adequate sleep – are the same ones that are most effective at creating brain health and preventing brain disease. 

I’ve been preaching and teaching this for over a decade. But I got my information from other people. I’m not a researcher, but a practitioner.  I’m out there in the trenches guiding people to healthier living. As such, it has been essential to listen to people guided by information rather than guided by a desired outcome.

This was part of the motivation to put out a video course with nearly 12 hours of video lessons – including almost 100 exercise videos – and a 200-page companion manual.  If you’re curious to know more about the course, go here. And if not, that’s cool too. Thanks for reading!

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