Do memory supplements really work?

The signs of memory loss can be disconcerting and alarming: lost keys, forgetting the name of a street, that task that you suddenly cannot remember. It is not surprising that according to the Scientific Business Journal, the sales of supplements offered as memory stimulants almost doubled between 2006 and 2015.


However, according to a review of studies published last December, there is no evidence that such products can prevent or delay memory lapses, mild cognitive impairment, or dementia in older adults. In fact, says Pieter Cohen, MD, associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, some can do more harm than good.

Here you will find what science says about taking supplements for brain health and what can be  done instead:

What the studies reveal
Some of the most popular supplements marketed to improve memory are fish oil (omega-3 amino acids); B vitamins such as folic acid, B6 and B12; and ginkgo Biloba extract, extracted from the dried leaves of the ginkgo tree. But decades of research have not shown its benefits.

For example, a study published in 2012 in the medical journal The Lancet Neurology, found that among 2,854 older adults with memory problems, those who took Ginkgo Biloba extract 2 times a day for 5 years had no less Alzheimer's cases than They took a placebo.


 As for fish oil, some studies have found that people who eat diets rich in omega-3, found in fatty fish such as salmon, may have a lower risk of dementia. But, similar benefits are not linked to supplements: A review of data from thousands of older adults in 2012 found that those who took omega-3 amino acid supplements had no less diagnosis of dementia or better results on memory tests. Short term than those who took a placebo.

B vitamins have not had better luck. A review of studies in 2015 found that supplementing with B6, B12 and/or folic acid has failed to decrease or reduce the risk of cognitive impairment in healthy older adults and did not improve brain function in those with cognitive decline or dementia.

Our experts also recommend avoiding combinations labeled "memory stimulants."

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Lack of regulation
A 2017 report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) analyzed hundreds of online advertisements promoting supplements to improve memory and identified 27 that made what appear to be illegal claims about the treatment and prevention of diseases such as dementia.

But even legal claims that suggest that supplements will improve, stimulate or enhance your memory " do not have to have data to justify themselves," says Lon Schneider, MD, professor of psychiatry and behavioral science at Keck School of Medicine in The University of Southern California. ("... Dietary supplements cannot cure, mitigate, treat or prevent Alzheimer's disease, dementia or any other disease," according to a statement from the Council Responsible for Nutrition, an industry group, in response to the GAO report ).

Supplements are barely regulated and some may even contain undisclosed ingredients or prescription drugs. Many ( sometimes dangerous ) interactions with medications; For example, Ginkgo Biloba should never be taken with anticoagulants, blood pressure medications or SSRI antidepressants. "Don't be fooled by advertising deployment," says Marvin M. Lipman, MD, chief medical consultant for CR. "Not only are they a waste of money, but some can be harmful."

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3 Strategies to try instead
Do brain training.  Improving reasoning and mental skills, learning a new language, for example, can help delay or decrease mental deterioration. A 10-year trial found that such training (although not computerized "brain games") can help improve the speed of the cognitive process and refine reasoning skills.

Exercise your body.  A 2011 study estimated that one million cases of Alzheimer's disease in the United States were due to a sedentary lifestyle. Several studies have found that physical activity, such as walking, weightlifting, yoga, or tai chi, can delay or decrease cognitive impairment but not prevent it.

Control your blood pressure.  Lowering blood pressure dramatically reduces the risk of heart disease and stroke, which are risk factors for memory loss.
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1 comments:

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Thick n Thin
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October 4, 2019 at 4:23 AM delete

yumm i never thought this

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