A good friend of mine commented this morning that he believes he has seen a 25% decrease in his “sharpness” and overall brain function and asked me if I am doing anything to slow down this type of decline. My investigation shows there is a great deal of research on two things that work from the inside of your body, at a system and cellular level, to improve your fight against this type of decline; CoQ10 and SAM-e. (All information pertaining to the sources of this article can be found in the April 2014 issue of Life Extension Magazine.)
A recent 10 year study conclusively showed that CoQ10 supplements dramatically improve survival for heart patients while also reducing hospitalizations (Life Extension Magazine, April 24, 2014). CoQ10 reduces chronic oxidative stress, improves functioning of the endothelium, arterial relaxation, and oxygen utilization. Oxidative stress and endothelial dysfunction are major causes of elevated blood pressure. In plain English, it gets oxygen to the cells more efficiently.
“Studies show that CoQ10 supplementation at 300mg/day not only restores normal CoQ10 levels, but prevents progression of heart failure and in fact can reverse that progression and extend survival and improve quality of life” (Life Extension Magazine, April 24, 2014).
CoQ10 doesn’t stop with the heart, but works amazingly well in cognitive brain function and prevention and regulation of depression. In studies involving aging animals, it was shown to decelerate the aging process, decrease the amount of destructive amyloid beta plaque in brain tissue, reduce the loss of dopamine-producing neurons (as seen in Parkinson’s disease), and at 1200mg/day appeared to slow functional decline in those with early age related decline (Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, etc.) (Life Extension Magazine, April 24, 2014).
For years health practitioners have seen excellent results in treating depression with no side effects with the naturally occurring brain chemical s-adenosylmethionine (SAM-e for short). “In addition to boosting brain chemicals important to mood health, SAM-e promotes the synthesis of other compounds that are crucial to functions such as gene expression and DNA repair.” (Life Extension Magazine, April 24, 2014).
Life Extension Magazine goes on to say “As a result of these many biochemical effects, scientists have demonstrated that SAM-e may play a unique role in preventing, treating, or reversing numerous disorders of aging – including Alzheimer’s, fibromyalgia, inflammatory bowel disease, insomnia, osteoarthritis, and liver disease.”
If you have never heard of methylation, its one of the most important functions in the body, at the cellular level. “Vital biochemical processes in the body rely on methylation. These include the synthesis of nucleic acids (DNA and RNA), proteins, phospholipids, and neurotransmitters.”
SAM-e’s ability to protect the body from aging, and age-related diseases such as cancer, neurodegeneration, and autoimmune diseases has been shown in numerous studies where methylation effect was demonstrated.
The clinical trials supporting this research used doses of 200 to 1600mg of SAM-e daily. As with any disease or health condition, see your doctor for support in how to use these supplements.
I suffered from narcolepsy for almost 10 years. I managed it with a drug cocktail that would scare anybody, but when I had an opportunity to live and work in Sweden, the doctors there told me about the benefits of SAM-e and how I should try it for the sleep disorder. Finally, I had an opportunity to read more, decided to try it, and discovered that when I took 1600mg daily, I had no symptoms of narcolepsy. During that time, I also removed all the prescription drugs for the treatment of narcolepsy. About 6 months after taking it, I ran out. In the week it took to reorder it, I had no symptoms. Basically, I never had to take SAM-e again. Although this is not a scientific, double-blind experiment, it was life-changing and I appear to be cured. Fourteen years later, I’ve never so much as experienced drowsiness and I can drive and work feeling confident.