My elderly client called me a few weeks ago, worried that she may have Alzheimer’s. I asked her “what makes you think you have Alzheimer’s?” She preceded to tell me, that she can’t remember people’s names or what to call food items (i.e. orange, broccoli.)”. I said “It is possible that you may have early signs of Alzheimer’s.” Then I told my client, “you have been under a lot of stress lately; also, you have had some personal stuff happen to you. When we are under a lot of stress, we do have a tendency to forget common words or tasks for a brief moment.” I adjusted the dosage of her Homeopathic remedy for stress. We scheduled a two week follow up call to evaluate her memory concerns. If her memory loss symptoms continued, I planned to put her on a Homeopathic remedy for the beginning stage of memory loss.
After my consultation call, I thought about how many more people would find interest in this topic and thus created this month’s blog. I hope you find it informative.
What is Alzheimer’s (AD)?
Alzheimer’s is a type of dementia that typically causes problems with memory, thinking and behavior. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia. It is an affliction of the brain, causing a gradual deterioration of brain cells that result in the loss of memory, and other important mental functions: memory, thinking, concentration, judgment and all 5 senses (smell, sight, sound, taste, and touch).
In older people, Alzheimer’s disease is currently ranked as the sixth leading cause of death in the United States, just behind heart disease and cancer.
AD is named after Dr. Alois Alzheimer, who in 1906 first noticed changes in the brain tissue of a 51 year old woman known as Auguste D. She died at the age of 55, with an unusual mental illness. Before her death, she had signs of dementia, including memory loss, disorientation, aphasia (loss the ability to understand or express speech), confusion, hallucinations and delusions. After she died, Dr. Alois Alzheimer examined her brain and found shrinkage in the brain with many abnormal clumps (known today as amyloid plaques) and tangled bundles of fibers (now called neurofibrillary). In 1910, Psychiatrist Emil Kraepelin, a colleague of Dr. Alzheimer’s coined the term Alzheimer’s Disease; in a psychiatric textbook and first referenced it as “Alzheimer’s disease.”
According to Louise L. Hay’s New York Times Best Seller book “You Can Heal Your Life,” the probable cause of Alzheimer’s disease is from a “Desire to leave the planet. The inability to face life as it is”. I found this to be a very interesting statement. In fact, I see how that statement could apply to various clients I have worked with over the years with Alzheimer like symptoms.
What Happens to the Brain with Alzheimer’s?
A person’s ability to perform normal daily activities starts to decrease slowly and worsen over time. As we age, stress and toxins, start changing color, fade of the brain and we lose brain cells (old age). Alzheimer’s is long process that can take 10-12 years to develop through the three stages of Alzheimer’s (Mild, Moderate and Severe). In the last years of their life, the person is usually in the severe AD stage.
Basically, what happens is plaque builds up in the brain – like in arteries. Plaque has a protein in it (aluminum and iron), which builds up as we age and in patients with Alzheimer’s they build up quicker. As the protein builds up toxins in brain, it kills brain cells causing a memory problem (number one condition of AD). This process of dying brain cells, causes the brain to shrink and have gaps and holes. After time, the brain has many gaps and it shuts down. At this point, Alzheimer’s is too severe and the person will regress to a childlike state.
What Causes Alzheimer’s Disease?
Normal aging process starts at age 65+ and slowly increases each decade thereafter; the aging process doubles for those with Alzheimer’s. All of those with AD have high levels of Aluminum build up in brain. Aluminum is found in the diet through all processed foods, tooth paste, water and even personal products like shampoos, etc. Aluminum can be added to food without knowing it, because there is no testing for it.
Additional Causes for Alzheimer’s Disease
- Emotional shocks, abuse, stress (war, torture) can block memory
- Depression or Hypertension
- Overworked – scattered, can’t remember
- Following a diet for years (30-40) of too many foods processed, high fructose, corn syrup, Xenobiotics
- History of head injuries, shocks to the brain
- Iron, lead, fluoride and aluminum poisonings, build up in brain as proteins in brain
- Drugs – all allopathic drugs (Pain pills keeps numbing brain)
Herbicides, pesticides, what is in our water and food
- Too much red meat can cause buildup of iron in brain
- Sleep – not enough good quality of sleep
- Electromagnetic Fields (EMFs) – affects the electric magnetic circuitry grid of the brain
- High exposure to high EM radiation – living near transformers and towers
Stages of Alzheimer’s
Signs of Alzheimer’s symptoms are often subtle at first. They start with slight memory loss, subtle changes in behavior, confusion and progress on from there. It is common to have one or two of these symptoms from a normal stressful life. For example, we all can forget where the car keys are and need to retrace our steps to find them, but those with AD have persistent and progressing symptoms. Those that are physically healthy (i.e.no other chronic disease is present) when diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, can live for up to 15 or even 20 years.
Mild – Early Stage:
- Problems coming up with the right word or name
- Trouble remembering names when introduced to new people
- Challenges performing tasks in social or work settings
- Forgetting material that one has just read
- Losing or misplacing a valuable object
- Increasing trouble with planning or organizing
Moderate – Middle Stage
The moderate stage is often the longest stage, where a loved one will require a greater level of care and will typically experience the fastest rate of decline. The symptoms will progress and they may notice new symptoms.
- Difficulty managing personal finances (paying bills)
- Difficulty with household tasks (laundry, making meals)
- Problems with personal care (bathing, grooming, toileting)
- Confusion about where they are or what day it is
- Wandering or getting lost
- Changes in sleep patterns – such as sleeping during the day and becoming restless at night
- Feeling moody or withdrawn, especially in socially or mentally challenging situations
- Forgetfulness about one’s own personal history – address, telephone number, high school or college from which they graduated
- Needing help choosing proper clothing for the season
- Continuously repeating stories
- Trouble controlling bladder and bowels in some individuals
Severe – Late Stage
Total deterioration of the brain, affects consciousness.
- Loose the ability to perform daily activities, need round-the-clock assistance with daily activities and personal care
- Not aware of their surroundings
- May not recognize oneself or family
- Have increasing difficulty communicating, to the point of not communicating
- Experience changes in physical abilities, including the ability to walk, sit and eventually, swallow
- Lack of control of bowel or bladder
- Groaning, moaning or grunting
- Late stage AD – Poor or decrease judgment, no fear or too many fears
- Become vulnerable to infections, especially pneumonia
Testing for Alzheimer’s Disease
There is really no actual test to confirm Alzheimer’s. The diagnosis is based on behavioral observations, medical history and history of relatives.
The Following Test help to distinguish Alzheimer’s disease from other causes of memory loss.
- Blood tests – rules out other potential causes of the dementia (i.e. thyroid disorders or vitamin deficiencies).
- Paper and pencil test – looking at how the health of the brain affects the thinking skills and behavior.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) or Computed Tomography (CT)
- By looking at images of the brain, can pinpoint any visible abnormalities (i.e. clots, bleeding or tumors), that may be causing signs and symptoms.
Positron Emission Tomography (PET)
- Can reveal areas of the brain that may be less active and the density of amyloid plaques.
At Home Peanut Butter Test
The smell of peanut butter is not lost with aging, and stimulates the brain. However, a silent and typical first symptom of Alzheimer’s is the loss of the sense of smell. The Peanut Butter Test can indicate an increased risk of Alzheimer’s. The object of the test is to be able to smell the peanut butter with the left nostril before reaching 10 cm (4 inches). If the peanut butter cannot be smelled at all or if it is closer to the nostril before it can be smelled, usually indicates the olfactory part of brain is not working and there is an increased risk of AD.
How to Do the Peanut Butter Test?
- Need Ruler
- Tablespoon (optional)
- Peanut Butter (I find a commercial brand, such as Skippy works best)
- 2 People – one being tested (testee) and someone to do the test (tester)
Vertically place a 12 inch ruler under the testee’s nose (1 inch mark under left nostril of testee, while tester holds ruler at the 12 inch mark). Testee closes both eyes and right nostril during the test. Tester starting at the 12 inch mark, slowly moves the opened peanut butter jar or 1 tablespoon of peanut butter up the ruler until testee gets a whiff of the peanut butter. Once testee smells the peanut butter, stop and check measurement on the ruler. The number will either be more than, equal to or less than 10 cm/ 4 inch. This simple test can provide valuable information.
Homeopathic Remedies for Alzheimer’s
Top 4 Homeopathic Remedies for Alzheimer’s: Alumina, Anacardium Orientale, Arsenicum Album, and Hyoscyamus Niger. Alumina and Hyoscyamus Niger are the 2 main Homeopathic remedies to think of to address all stages of Alzheimer. Other Homeopathic remedies are good for the beginning stages and the end stages of AD. Select the Homeopathic remedy, that best fits the person’s AD symptoms that are being exhibited.
Listed below are the key symptoms of various Homeopathic remedies to for Alzheimer’s:
- For all stages, especially for earlier stage of Alzheimer’s
- Weak memory or loss
- Confused as to personal identity – does not remember own name or well-known streets
- Used for aluminum poisoning from pots
- Bowels constipation for days with no urge
- Total loss of memory after shock or injury (head injuries, strokes), no recollection – total amnesia
- Whole personality changes – they don’t know where they are, often confused, more violent and constantly frustrated
- Tendency to use foul language
- Anxious, anxiety of health, very needy people
- Has fear in eyes
- Imagines house full of thieves, night watchman – stands guard every night
- Hallucinations of smell and sight -see vermin and throws them away bugs by handfuls
- #1 Homeopathic remedy to consider for all stages of Alzheimer’s
- Repetitive behavior – sits all day turning the blanket or counting the squares on the floor
- Restless – wanders around, paces the floor
- Mental confusion – don’t know where are, don’t recognized people, stoic look
- Gestures with finger at the air, picks at clothing (like picking lint off)
- Acts as if drunk, intoxicated when walking
- Sudden fits of yelling, screaming and then calm
- Takes clothes off
Other Homeopathic Remedies to Consider for Alzheimer’s
- #1 Homeopathic remedy to consider for Alzheimer’s regress back to childish behavior, especially since a stroke. Becomes very attached certain objects doll, toys or us clings to a blanket or stuff animal. Freaks out if blanket or toy taken away and calms down when give back.
- Sensitive to being looked at
- Forgets their errand or words in mouth, loss of memory
- Very shy and timid
- Sings and talks in poetry
- Walks around as if drunk or intoxicated muttering
- Lots of jerking or twitching
- Clumsy – always injuring themselves
- Alzheimer’s from a grief
- Weakened memory, mental effort difficult
- Sensitive to pain and noises
- Changeable moods
- Needs cold water on face to think – brain fog or brain fatigue
- Walks around restless, must walk slowly
- Last stage Alzheimer’s
- Totally uninterested, thoughtless, staring
- Bed ridden
- Indifferent to loved ones or activities
- Involuntary sighing
- Used for beginning and mid stage of Alzheimer’s
- Becomes very introverted, problems speaking
- Sensitive to being looked at similar to Baryta Carbonica
- Worse consolation – does not want to be held or cuddled
- From a grief
Kali Phosphoricum 6x
Great Homeopathic Cell Salt to use as a memory tonic, especially just starting to lose memory and can’t concentrate.
Dosage – 4 tablets taken 3 times day, for 1-3 months or longer if need.
What Else Can Be Done to Support and Possible Delay Alzheimer’s Disease Naturally?
- Alternate nostril breathing
- CBD oil
- Coconut oil
- Grounding sheets and mats – provides better sleep connecting the heart to the brain
- Superfoods help regenerate nerves and tissues
- Activated charcoal – detox any AD toxins
- Body work (i.e. Reflexology, foot massage, cranial sacral)
Alternate Nostril Breathing Technique (Nadi Shodhura Pranyana Qigong)
Consciously alternating the breath, will reconnect both sides of brain. Do alternating nostril breathing for brain health, coordinating the left and right side of brain directly links the brain to the Hippocampus and Limbic part of brain. The Hippocampus, often affects those with AD, because this is where the memory is stored and is located by the olfactory area. This is why smells and memory are connected with the left nostril and works the right part of the brain.
How to Do Alternate Nostril Breathing:
Close left nostril with thumb or ring finger, leaving right nostril open. Inhale through the right nostril. Hold breath and then close the right nostril with opposite finger and exhale through left nostril. With the right nostril still closed, inhaled through left nostril. Hold breath and close left nostril and exhale out right nostril. Do several rounds of alternate breathing on up to several minutes. It is important that the breath is slow and gentle throughout the practice.
Superfoods are Great for Everyone Including Those with Alzheimer’s
Superfoods help keep the brain healthy and nourish the brain and heart connection, through the aging process.
- 1 tablespoon daily of either seed
- Chia seeds
- Hemp seeds
- Almonds, Almond Milk (preferably homemade) – 4-5 almonds a day; strengthens heart and brain
- Walnuts (looks exactly like the brain) – cooked or raw; high in omega 3, good for heart and brain
- Blueberries – memories and high antioxidants
- Coconut oil – 1 teaspoon eaten daily and/or as massage oil for feet; great for brain and cognitive
- Turmeric – cooking or Curcumin supplement (is turmeric capsule); helps remove amyloids plaque buildup in brain by breaking down amyloid protein and regenerates the brain
- Ashwagandha Tincture – Slows the aging process, helps oxidative stress by helping nerve cells in brain, helps lower stress level, stress hormones, and helps promote sleep (wakes up refresh)
- Sage Capsule, Tincture or Sage oil 5-10 drops 1 – 3 times a day; within 4 months restores memory and cognitive functioning
- Lions Mane Mushroom – powder, extract or capsules (add powder to smoothies, make tea); enhances memory and antidepressant (brain tonic), calms and reduces amyloids plaque
- CBD Oil (especially later stage AD) 25 mg capsules; Helps stimulate new nerve connection– neurogenesis. Results within few weeks (recommend Cannavest.com brand)
- Charcoal (food grade), though not an herb. 1 Charcoal capsule with glass of water. Helps clear out over 4, 000 toxins from body, including Ems.
Good Combinations to Support AD – any of the following:
- CBD oil and Coconut oil
- CDB oil and Sage oil
- CDB oil and Lions Mane
- Charcoal (food grade) with Sage – helps neurotransmitters work better in the brain
What Else Can You Do Now to Delay the Onset of Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease?
- Living a healthy lifestyle, Eating a clean diet with lots of fruits and vegetables
- Healthy fats – avocadoes, olive oil, nuts and seeds
- No processed foods
- Exercise regularly (i.e. walking, qigong, yoga)
- Higher levels of physical activity have been associated with a lower incidence of Alzheimer’s disease
- Exercise your brain – learn something new (i.e. dance, foreign language), do crossword puzzles, etc. Each time you learn something you create new nerve connections and help regenerate nerves.
I’d like to refer back to Louise L Hay’s book “You Can Heal Your Life”, in it, she suggests using the following aphorism to create a new thought pattern: “Everything happens in the right time-space sequence. Divine right action is taking place at all times”. Find the time to love, care for and support yourself and others. There are so many ways we can support ourselves naturally. Every cell in our bodies can benefit from simple choices we make daily.