Exercise Cleans Your Brain And Clears Your Mind, Literally:
So there are many problems medicine faces that seem insurmountable.
But every day, Science seems to make a little bit more progress.
For example, some big pharma companies recently had a few failures with their Alzheimer’s drug programs and abandoned them,
But Dr. Rudy Tanzi’s team just found something very encouraging that could mean a fix for the disease, and it may start with a simple thing you keep getting nagged to do…
How Can We Stop It Before It’s Too Late?:
Alzheimer’s is a terrible disease that people seem to get out of nowhere.
So far, it’s seemed there was little you could do about it once it started,
And also little you could do to prevent it.
But the short answer is that the MGH team found what looks like the beginning of real progress.
It’s based on a cocktail of 2 compounds that make your brain-cells grow, plus a secret one that comes from your own body. And so far it looks good.
Read on to find out how…
It Starts In The Center Of Your Brain:
So one of the main problems with Alzheimer’s is that you lose your memory among other things.
And your memory is situated mostly in the Hippocampus part of your brain.
So the standard theory would go that if you could just grow more brain-cells in that area,
Maybe you could restore your memory & fix the disease.
A Good Place To Start:
So that’s what Dr. Rudy’s team tried.
They tested one method of making new brain-cells grow using a combination of gene-therapy and drugs.
But it didn’t work. And they couldn’t understand why.
This shouldn’t be so, because despite 1 or 2 recent studies trying to assert that you can’t grow new brain-cells,
Our friend Sandrine Thuret would tell you otherwise.
There Are ways you can grow new brain-cells,
And also reduce the harm you do to your own brain that is actually neurotoxic.
Copying The Anti-Depressant Mystery:
A combination of those ideas and the neurochemistry of anti-depressants is where the team found its next breakthrough.
You see, one of the most perplexing things about those drugs is that for awhile Science didn’t really know how they worked,
Just that they did,
Until recently, they thought meds like Prozac were correcting a chemical-imbalance in the brain.
But they were actually growing new brain-cells too!
But wait, it gets better.
They were also creating the chemical environment for those new brain-cells to survive instead of being pruned-away in the brain’s natural cleanup routine.
The Miracle Of Exercise:
And I believe that’s where Dr. Tanzi’s team got their inspiration.
Because according to Sandrine, what is one of the things we know grows new brain-cells?
Well guess what? Dr. Rudy’s team confirmed that too, and found-out the absolute KEY to making their idea work.
-Because just like the Antidepressants,
Exercise actually does TWO things!
It makes the new hippocampus brain-cells grow, but it Also creates the chemical environment in which they can survive to maturity!
Clearing The Way First:
And that’s just where Dr. Rudy’s team went next!
You see, the Alzheimer’s Brain is a REALLY hostile place to brain-cells.
And new baby ones they were trying to grow are even more at-risk.
So what you need is something similar to the way you’d apply a finish to any surface.
You need to both clean and prep it first.
And the Magic prep ingredient exercise gives your brain? BDNF!
Cardio Exercise’s Secret Sauce May Clean Alzheimer’s From Your Brain:
BDNF (or Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor) is a special chemical in the brain that clears away any local toxicity and sets up all the right precursors for that brain-cell to survive and grow.
-Sort-of like Hippocampus steroids.
And Cardiovascular Exercise is AWESOME at producing BDNF.
So much so, that the early trials they did between the medicated mice and the ones that exercised,
Showed BETTER results in the group of mice that only did exercise!
The test mice who exercised the most also had the lowest starting-levels of Alzheimer’s buildup to begin-with.
Conversely the other test-group that had their hippocampus cell-growth artificially limited similar to a sedentary person in bad-health, ended-up displaying Alzheimer’s symptoms very early.
Adding Back In Cardio’s Magic:
So they found a way to produce their own BDNF with some more chemistry,
Then applied the previous 2 factors they tried before,
And VOILA! Brand new brain-cells in the Hippocampus of the test-mice,
That were started, and grew in to full-sized functional cells,
With those mice eventually displaying fewer symptoms of Alzheimer’s after administration!
Which brings us back to Exercise.
So What Can You Do?:
Just like Sandrine, Rudy says one of the key things anyone needs to do in their life to try to avoid Alzheimers,
Even if they have 2 copies of the Big Bad APoE4 Gene,
Is to Get Regular Cardiovascular Exercise.
That, along with managing stress, challenging your brain with new things, maintaining social connections and getting plenty of sleep,
ESPECIALLY because Deep-Sleep is when your brain actually uses its built-in cleaning system to avoid Alzheimers in its own way.
Sara Mednick might even argue that if you can get a 90-minute Nap in, you might get an extra cleaning-cycle in also, because Naps are magic.
Future Interventions May Still Be Rescues:
Now one day, there will be some version of this treatment that can be administered in a safe & practical way.
Because it won’t just be about telling someone to go get brain-cleaning exercise more.
There may be some patients who come in already presenting varying levels of telltale signals already.
The best way for them and also those in the worst shape is to just to give them the final-version of the Tanzi team’s cocktail,
And hope they start growing new brain-cells right-away.
Future Drugs May Clean Your Brain, Too:
Also by that time, if there were a new drug to either clear away all the Alzheimer’s Beta-Amyloid+Tau-Protein junk,
Or put your brain into a long-term Deep-Sleep cycle like a sleep-coma, so it could just go through an extended cleaning phase,
That would be great, too.
But the goal is to have people take this type of drug as a supplement to their lives,
Soon, This Type Of Thing Will Be A One-A-Day Pill:
And also accounting for less-than-perfect Diet & Exercise, as we all have.
-Just the same way people take cholesterol medicine, blood-pressure medicine, or even baby-aspirin to avoid certain cardiovascular problems.
-Many of which are just plain related to keeping up great Circulation!
But until the next few rounds of tests when Dr. Rudy’s team eventually tries the targeted-gene + drug therapy on actual Alzheimer’s sufferers to see if the results translate,
It sure looks like a combination of Dr. Neal Barnard’s diet ideas,
The type of healthy self-care that Mike Evans talks about, and reducing stress by staying connected to good people,
(especially since stressful-loneliness is neurotoxic)
Giving that brain-cleaning system a good chance to work with great Sleep,
And the proven-miracle of Cardio Exercise just be the best routine we have right now to clean your brain and avoid Alzheimer’s and Dementia in the first place; so get out there & hustle, and not just for your waistline!
Photo Credits: “runner silhouette”, by skeeze
• Source: Harvard – Exercise improves cognition in Alzheimer’s mice
• More Coverage: Science – A brain boost to fight Alzheimer’s disease [Study Commentary] | Dr. Tanzi’s CureAlz Genome Project
• Source Study: Science – Combined adult neurogenesis and BDNF mimic exercise effects on cognition in an Alzheimer’s mouse model