In his recently published book, a prominent neurologist makes the assertion that “aging is not inevitable.” He goes on to describe the actions that may be taken to reduce the risk of developing disease as one gets older. In an interview with Express.co.uk, Dr. Robert Friedland, a neurologist at the University of Louisville School of Medicine in Kentucky, suggested that a simple adjustment to one’s diet might be enough to stop the development of harmful gut bacteria, which Dr. Friedland’s research has shown to be linked to the development of Alzheimer’s disease.
One of the many reasons of Alzheimer’s disease is an abnormally high level of inflammation in the brain, which is brought on by certain bacteria that live in the gut. Friedland explained that a diet high in fiber can replace the microorganisms that cause inflammation with ones that are anti-inflammatory.
He stated that everyone possesses germs in their gastrointestinal tract. They are essential to survival, and one cannot exist without them. It is not as important to know how many different types of bacteria are present as it is to know which kind of bacteria are there. Diet plays a significant role in determining the composition of the bacterial community that is already there.
“A diet high in fiber and based primarily on vegetables leads to the development of a bacterial population in the stomach that aids in the reduction of excessive inflammation throughout the body, including in the brain.
A diet that is heavy in saturated fat and poor in fiber can lead to a bacterial population in the gut that is associated with increased inflammation.
In the year 2015, he made the discovery that bacteria in the stomach that carried a protein called amyloid on their surface could “misfold” proteins in the brain, which led to the development of Alzheimer’s disease.
In collaboration with other researchers, he discovered that the changed structure of the brain proteins, which are referred to as plaques, marked them to be attacked by the immune system of the body as part of the process of inflammation.
According to Friedland’s explanation, the accumulation of plaques and the “excessive inflammation” that results from them are “engaged in harming nerve cells called neurons, which leads to cognitive deficiencies.”
Researchers were aware of the potentially harmful impact that amyloid proteins play prior to Friedland’s studies. On the other hand, he was the first person to discover that bacteria in the gut were the cause of the issue.
Additional risk factors that can lead to disease, as well as methods for avoiding them
Friedland investigates variables other than gut bacteria that can shorten your life in his latest book, titled Unaging: The Four Elements That Impact How You Age. In this book, Friedland focuses on the four factors that have the most influence on how you age.
He argues that in order to preserve longevity, there are four “reserve components” that need to be protected. His explanation is based on his years of experience dealing with clients.
In addition to defending yourself physically, which is one of the reasons, he proposes in his book that you protect your “cognitive, psychological, and social” life. Physical protection is one of the factors.
He explained that psychological reserve is the capacity to keep healthy mental function despite the onset of age-related conditions such as agitation, anxiety, sadness, and other unhealthful mental states.
People who are emotionally more stable, as well as those who have higher resilience and conscientiousness, have a greater resistance to cognitive decline.
He went on to say that “social reserve” refers to the ability to have interpersonal networks and support systems, as well as the capacity to be connected to other people and society. People who live alone have twice the chance of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
In addition, he says that education and the difficulty of one’s cognitive work are both necessary components for maintaining one’s mental health into old age. He refers to all of these elements collectively as “cognitive reserve.”
Other things that can put you at risk for Alzheimer’s illness
Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia are two forms of dementia that are more likely to develop in people who have a history of cardiovascular disease or other conditions that impact their blood vessels.
According to the NHS, lowering your alcohol consumption, giving up smoking, and increasing the amount of physical activity you get to at least 150 minutes per week can help lower your risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
In addition, the National Health Service (NHS) suggests the following: if you have diabetes, make sure you adhere to the diet and take your medication; eat a healthy, balanced diet that includes at least five servings of fruit and vegetables each day; and consume fish at least twice a week.
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