Well-oiled solution for Alzheimer’s

Including virgin coconut oil in prescribed amounts to the daily diet helps prevent Alzheimer’s disease, improve cognition and cognitive performance, suggests Sheryl Salis

Alzheimer’s disease in older adults is known to be the most common cause of dementia. It is an irreversible, progressive brain disorder that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills, and eventually the ability to carry out the simplest of daily tasks. It is also now known as the insulin resistance of the brain. Dementia ranges in severity from the mildest stage where it just begins to affect a person’s functioning to a severe stage where the person has to depend on others for basic activities.

Older adults with a history of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, obesity and diabetes are at an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Age-related changes in the brain affect neurons by causing shrinking of certain parts of the brain, inflammation, production of unstable molecules called free radicals causing Alzheimer.

A healthy lifestyle, coupled with a nutritious diet and physical activity, social engagement, prevention of lifestyle diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure can help in preventing Alzheimer’s. There is research being conducted in the area of the use of coconut oil in weight management, heart disease, Alzheimer’s and antimicrobial activity among others. Coconut oil contains 92% of saturated fats, of which almost 48% comes from lauric acid, and 7% from capric acid, which are medium-chain fatty acids (MCFA). It is one of the richest sources of medium-chain triglyceride’s (MCT). MCFAs present in coconut oil are easily absorbed and metabolised by the liver and can be converted to ketones which are an alternative fuel to glucose.

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