Alzheimer’s is a brain disorder named for German physician Alois Alzheimer. Alzheimer first described the disease in 1906. Although medical experts know a great deal more about Alzheimer’s now than they did at the turn of the last century, no cure has yet been found.
Alzheimer’s is a progressive brain disease. This means that it gets worse over time. When you have Alzheimer’s, the disease slowly kills your brain cells. This causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior. Alzheimer’s can affect everything you do: from work, to socializing, to the everyday tasks of daily living.
So far, medical research suggests that the best way to reduce the damage caused by Alzheimer’s is to avoid getting the disease altogether. Antioxidants have been shown to lower your risk for getting this devastating disease.
In a study performed in the Netherlands, researchers wanted to find out if the intake of dietary antioxidants had any impact on preventing the occurrence of Alzheimer’s. A total of 5395 people participated in the study. All were aged 55 years and up and had not been diagnosed with dementia. The researchers assessed the diets of the participants for a period of three years.
In particular, the researchers looked at dietary intake of beta-carotene, flavonoids, vitamin C, and vitamin E. After a six-year follow-up, 197 participants developed dementia; out of this group, 146 had Alzheimer’s disease. For those who remained free of the disease, high intakes of vitamin C and vitamin E were recorded. The research team concluded that vitamin C and E were associated with a lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
So get your daily intake of vitamin C and E. The recommended daily intake (RDI) for vitamin C is 75 milligrams and the RDI for vitamin E is 10 milligrams.
Some excellent food sources of vitamin E include wheat germ oil, almonds, sunflower seeds, safflower oil, and fortified cereals.