Thursday, August 2, 2012


I thought I'd share some myths about Alzheimer's.

1)  There is a test to diagnose Alzheimer's. There is not... They basically rule out other possible causes of the symptoms.  The final diagnoses is made after death.  However, they are close to developing a blood test to diagnose it.

2)  You can stop the disease with medications.  Basically, the medications buy some time.  It can slow the symptoms but there is no cure.  Some patients do not even respond to the meds.

3)  Alzheimer's is not a fatal disease.  Because the disease usually occurs in the elderly they often die from other causes.  But, it is a progressive disease that can lead to death.

4)  Alzheimer's only affects the elderly.  9 out of 10 Alzheimer's patients are over the age of 65.  But, there are patients who are diagnosed as early as their 30s.

5)  Depression causes Alzheimer's.  Patients with Alzheimer's are often depressed but it is not a cause.

6)  Symptoms of Alzheimer's are reversible.  They are not.  Part of the reason for this misconception is that marketing for some drugs seem to claim remarkable results. 

7)  Aspartame, aluminum or silver tooth fillings cause the disease.  There is no proof to any of these claims.  When there is no real proof it is easy for rumors and speculation to spread.

8)  Annual flu shots can trigger Alzheimer's.  Simply not true.

9)  Just a little more effort will overcome Alzheimer's.  No amount of effort or work will stop this hideous disease.  Maintaining an active lifestyle, including physical and mental activities, can improve the quality of life but they do not stop the progression of the disease.

10)  Caregivers can do it alone.  They can not.  They need support and they need a break.

11)  Alzheimer's is the normal result of aging... Everyone will get it if they live long enough.  It is not.

My personal opinion, and it is just that, is that it is caused by the multitude of lifestyle and food choices that the last few generations have chosen.  Never before have we been bombarded by so many chemicals and "modified" food products.  Everything from trans-fats, to hormones, to non-stick pans and stain resistant clothes, to artificial sweeteners, to our dependency on our electronics and becoming couch potatoes.  I believe all of these things contribute directly or indirectly to this disease.  But, again, that just my opinion. 

If you are interested, this is my source:

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