Beta Amyloid Plaques and Alzheimer’s Disease
There is growing evidence that suggests that turmeric provides protection against neuro-degenerative diseases.
The elderly in India have the lowest rate of Alzheimer’s disease in the world. This is most likely tied to their diet, which is high in turmeric. Indians eat turmeric with almost every meal, and researchers speculate that the anti-inflammatory effects of curcumin, a biologically active constituent in turmeric, may be responsible.
But don’t rush out and buy curcumin supplements. Reports show that eating turmeric is EFFECTIVE whereas supplementing with curcumin IS NOT. Once again, it may be the synergistic effect of the whole food that is better than an isolated ingredient. Turmeric powder would be a better alternative.
Turmeric appears to protect against Alzheimer’s disease by turning on a gene that codes for the production of antioxidant proteins.
Beta Amyloid Plaques and Brain Dysfunction
Turmeric is also reported to remove beta amyloid plaques buildup in the brain. Amyloid is a general term for protein fragments that the body produces normally. In a healthy person, these protein fragments are broken down and eliminated. In an unhealthy brain, such as with Alzheimer’s disease, the fragments accumulate and form plaque between brain cells.
Because curcumin has the ability to pass through the blood brain barrier, it begins to dissolve amyloid fibrils and remove them. The most active ingredient in turmeric is bisdemethoxycurcumin – it increases the activity of the immune system to remove the beta amyloid plaque that has been formed.
It is recommended that a person not use turmeric if they have gallstones or bile duct dysfunction. Pregnant women shouldn’t use it without their doctors’ approval.
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