What Should I Take Away From This Research
The link between alcohol and dementia in non-drinkers however is not fully understood and individuals who do not currently drink alcohol should not start as a method of protection against the development of dementia.
From the evidence collected to date, it is not possible to determine what effect drinking within the NHS recommended alcohol guidelines has on a person’s risk of dementia.
Guidelines recommend that alcohol consumption be reduced as much as possible, particularly in mid-life, to minimize the risk of developing other age-related conditions such as frailty. Current evidence indicates that adopting a healthy lifestyle throughout your life is the best way to reduce risk of dementia and other long-term health problems. This includes drinking in moderation but also other factors such as not smoking, taking plenty of physical exercise and eating a healthy, balanced diet.
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Neuroprotective Effects Of Red Wine Polyphenols In Ad And Pd
Much effort has been undertaken in the way of understanding the neuroprotective effects of polyphenols, using both in vitro and in vivo models . Broadly speaking, the molecular mechanisms of their neuroprotective actions can be classified as: anti-inflammatory activities and antioxidant capacity, including free radical scavenging and metal chelation modulation of cell signaling pathways and anti-amyloid action through direct binding with specific amyloidogenic proteins such as A, S, and tau. Such a wide mode of action highlights a key aspect that has repeatedly emerged from studies on natural polyphenols, including wine polyphenols namely that they exhibit a remarkable ability to simultaneously and synergistically modulate multiple molecular targets, suggesting a greater potential for therapeutic efficacy in the complex pathogenesis of AD and PD . Thus, in this section, we summarize in vitro and in vivo neuroprotective effects of RWP in relation to the shared pathological features involved in AD and PD. Experimental findings on neuroprotective mechanisms will later be discussed in light of recent bioavailability and clinical studies aimed at therapeutic use of red wine polyphenols.
Is It Time To Change Your Diet
Scientists are always careful with studies such as this one. While it shows a connection between cheese, red wine and better cognitive health, it is not definitive without further tests. Brandon Klinedinst, a study co-author and a neuroscience PhD candidate at Iowa State University, said in an interview that I wouldnt personally tell someone to change their diet just based on this alone.
However, he added that the study is unique in that it looked at food consumption and cognitive health for the patients over a longer period of time. He said further study is warranted, and added that the findings certainly supported people eating a Mediterranean diet
Another key to the study is moderation. Those who experienced better cognitive protection consumed up to one bottle of wine, but that covered an entire day, not one sitting. The patients also almost always drank the wine with food, which allows the body to absorb the alcohol more slowly. Most physicians, however, recommend that people do not start drinking alcohol for health reasons if they dont already drink.
Cheese is another matter. The patients also ate cheese daily . Previous studies have made the same conclusion about the protective potential of cheese and daily products.
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What Does The Research Really Mean
To start, it doesnt mean that you should be drinking 1,000 bottles of red wine a day. Focusing on the link to red wine makes for good headlines, but its not really what the study was about. Resveratrol and red wine arent the same thing, the latter merely contains some of the former.
And resveratrols not specific to red wine. Youll also find it in a number of other foods including grapes , blueberries, peanut butter, and dark chocolate, to name a few. But its especially abundant in red wine and some experts believe people absorb more of it when they drink it since the alcohol makes it more soluble.
None of the food or drink sources for resveratrol will provide you with the quantities the patients in the study consumed though. The only way to get that much resveratrol in your diet is take a supplement like the one they were given.
That said, in moderation, it certainly doesnt hurt to let foods and drinks with resveratrol into your diet. Just dont go overboard any health effects you get from red wine are quickly offset by the health risks if you consume it to excess.
What Is The Current Advice
According to the UK chief medical officers, we should stick to drinking no more than 14 units of alcohol a week. This keeps health risks to a low and safe level.
- Large glass of wine – 3 units
- Pint of higher-strength lager or beer – 3 units
- Standard glass of wine – 2 units
- Pint of lower-strength lager or beer – 2 units
- Bottle of lager or beer – 1.7 units
- Single shot of spirits – 1 unit
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Relationship Of Alcoholic Beverages To Cognitive Function And Dementias In An Ageing Population
Prior to a study by Zuccala et al. , there was conflicting evidence on the relationship between alcohol consumption per se and cognitive function .
A potential confounder which could explain earlier conflicting results is genetic differences in ability to metabolise alcohol. Although not consistently observed in studies , individuals with higher genetic ability to metabolise alcohol and who are hence less exposed to alcohol have been shown to have a greater association with healthy cognitive function than those with lower genetic ability . The enzyme alcohol dehydrogenase catalyses the metabolism of alcohol to acetaldehyde . There are, for example, at least nine different forms of ADH enzymes which are encoded by seven different genes. Each form of the enzyme has a different rate of metabolism and may be located in different tissues. Accordingly, the effect of alcohol consumption on cognition changes may be conditional on genotype.
As mentioned earlier, mild cognitive dysfunction is an early symptom of dementia, and in particular Alzheimers disease, which is a complex, late-onset disorder characterised by the loss of memory and multiple cognitive functions. In patients with mild cognitive dysfunction, consuming up to 15g alcohol per day now appears to also decrease the rate of progression to dementia by approximately 85% , while 1030g alcohol per day reduces the risk of Alzheimers disease and vascular dementia .
Some People Should Not Drink Alcohol
There are some people that should not drink alcohol. This group includes but is not limited to alcoholics, people with Wernicke-Korakoff syndrome, those taking certain medications that could negatively interact with alcohol, people with certain medical conditions such as liver disease and pancreatitis, those who are under the legal age to drink, women who are pregnant and those who are operating a vehicle or performing other complex tasks.
Other studies have found that drinking alcohol has other health risks thus, your decision to drink alcohol should be discussed with your healthcare provider.
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Assessment Of Alcohol Intake
At inclusion, the caregivers were asked about the patient’s current average daily intake of alcohol.
The caregivers were asked in a questionnaire to assess: Alcohol consumptioncurrent daily intake : no alcohol, only at parties, 1 or < 1unit/day, 23units/day or more than 3units/day. Alcohol consumption was not divided into types of alcoholic beverages .
Owing to the similar raw 3-year mortality and since the two classifications were overlapping, the groups only at parties and 1 or < 1unit/day were compiled under the title 1 or < 1unit/day.
The Danish unit of alcohol was used in the study. A Danish unit of alcohol is 12g/15mL of pure alcohol
Red Wine Polyphenols Reduce Oxidative Stress Through Direct Antioxidant And Iron
The central nervous system is highly susceptible to oxidative stress , mainly due to its high oxygen consumption and metabolic activity . Other reasons for the selective neuronal variability to OS include the presence of elevated amounts of redox-active metals, such as zinc, copper, and iron, and the enrichment of neuronal membranes with long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids which are extremely sensitive to oxidation . Because of this, OS has been majorly implicated in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases and, hence, direct antioxidant and metal-complexing properties of RWP may be of significance .
It should be emphasized at this point that when considering the final antioxidant effect of red wine, possible synergistic/additive/antagonistic effects among the various polyphenol compounds in the mixture should be taken into account. In fact, a study on the interaction of three RWP quercetin, resveratrol, and caffeic acid in combination revealed markedly different antioxidant/scavenging potencies of the compounds when compared to the activity of individual polyphenols alone .
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Excessive Amounts Of Alcohol
Multiple research and observational studies have demonstrated that people who drink high amounts of alcohol are at an increased risk of developing dementia. Alcohol-related brain damage may account for approximately 10% of all dementia cases.
Cognitive impairments among excessive alcohol drinkers include:
These cognitive impairments may develop over time, but alcohol can also cause immediate memory loss, known as blackouts.
According to one study conducted on the risk factors for younger-onset dementia, alcohol intoxication as a late teenager is one of the highest predictors of men who will develop it. Additionally, a second study found that 57% of young-onset dementia was related to chronic heavy alcohol use.
Fruits Tea Red Wine May Help Fend Off Alzheimer’s Disease
If you’re worried about developing Alzheimer’s disease, new research suggests that eating more fruits or drinking more tea or red wine might help protect your brain.
People who had the lowest amounts of fruits — like apples and berries — and red wine and tea in their diets were two to four times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease or another related dementia, the study found.
“Diet matters. And the good news is you don’t have to make dramatic changes. Modest changes like going from not eating any berries to eating a cup or two a week can make a difference,” explained the study’s senior author, Paul Jacques. He’s a senior scientist and director of nutritional epidemiology at the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University in Boston.
The researchers suspect that flavonoids — substances naturally found in plant foods — are providing these potential benefits in brain health. One major health benefit associated with flavonoids is reduced inflammation. Inflammation has been linked to Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.
The research included 2,800 people who were 50 or older when the study began in 1970. Their average age was 59. About half were women, and most participants were white and of European descent.
The researchers sorted the diet information into four categories of flavonoids intake. They compared people with the lowest intake to those with the highest intake.
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Red Wine Polyphenols Modulate Signaling Pathways
It has become evident that RWP and their corresponding in vivo metabolites elicit their neuroprotective effects not by simply acting as antioxidants, but rather by interacting with various signaling cascades involved in adaptive stress responses . Selective inhibitory or stimulatory actions of RWP on neuronal and glial kinase signaling cascades have been studied, including phosphoinositide 3-kinase /protein kinase B mitogen-activated protein kinase and extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 and nuclear factor kappa B . Inhibition or stimulation of these pathways by RWP is likely to profoundly affect cellular function by altering the phosphorylation state of target molecules and/or by modulating gene expression . Such actions will be highlighted in relation to the pathogenesis of AD and PD .
Table 2. Neuroprotective signal transduction by major red wine polyphenols and their metabolites.
As such, therefore, phenolic constituents of red wine represent potent small-molecules capable of countering OS and neuroinflammation in neurodegenerative disease. Such regulation appears to be mediated by attenuation of microglial activation and associated actions on diverse intracellular signaling pathways, including the MAPK cascade and NF-B pathway. Perhaps further work should be conducted to elucidate the consequences of the interactions or the synergistic effects between different RWP on their myriad intracellular targets .
Does Alcohol Make Alzheimers Worse
Alcohol adversely affects cognition and memory. In fact, according to CNN.com, one study, presented at the Alzheimers Association International conference, indicated that the more often a senior binge drinks, the more likely he/she is to experience cognitive decline and memory deficits.
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The #1 Health Myth You Still Believe About Red Wine But Shouldnt
Nothings better than hearing that the delicious foods were already eating also have some pretty big health benefits. So its not surprising that the media lit up recently with the exciting news that drinking red wine could be beneficial to our brains.
A study had found that resveratrol an antioxidant found in red wine could help slow Alzheimers disease. It was suggested that if resveratrol can slow Alzheimers, and resveratrol is in red wine, then consuming red wine must also ease the progression of Alzheimers.
Unfortunately, that logic just doesnt work. The reality is that consuming wine in all but the most moderate doses will most likely increase the risk of dementia.
And while the data suggests that small amounts of alcohol do offer some protection to the heart, wine is statistically no more protective than any other alcohol.
What Actually Happens In Your Body When You Drink Wine
So how could consuming too much alcohol be linked to dementia? Thats due to a number of factors, including the inflammatory effects, the sugar load, and the toxin demands on the liver.
In fact, as a doctor of internal medicine, I show my patients a picture of a wineglass full of sugar and tell them to imagine this every time they look at a third glass of wine . Of course, there isnt that much sugar in wine, but from a health perspective, that drink is a glass of inflammation.
The Bottom Line
MD, MS, ABIHM, ABAARM, IFMCP
Haemostasis And Oxidative Stress
A lack of heme oxygenase 1, an endogenous enzyme that is induced in neurons in response to oxidative and other stress and stimulates the degradation of pro-oxidant heme into free iron, carbon monoxide and biliverdin and/or the anti-oxidative bilirubin, may also be associated with increased neural damage from ischaemic strokes , as well with Alzheimers disease and Parkinsons disease . Heme oxygenase 1 is dose- and time-dependently induced by resveratrol, which may provide another cerebrovascular and neuroprotective effect for phenolic compounds.
Indeed, Parkinsons disease has been linked to increased levels of oxidative and nitrosative stress , and is characterised by a progressive loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta region of the brain and the appearance of Lewy bodies and neurites, which comprise insoluble amyloid-like fibrils that contain the protein alpha-synuclein. Oxidative stress apparently promotes the aggregation of alpha-synuclein . An inverse relationship between amount of wine consumed and risk has been observed where the lowest risk was observed for wine consumers of approximately 140 to 420g per week . Wine-derived phenolic compounds such as catechin and epicatechin have recently been observed in vitro to inhibit the formation of alpha-synuclein fibrils, and to destabilize preformed fibrils .
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Strengths And Limitations Of This Study
Data in this study are disease-specific for Alzheimer’s disease . This gives us important knowledge on how a very common lifestyle factor such as alcohol affects the lives of people diagnosed with AD specifically.
Since extensive data were collected on each patient in the Danish Alzheimer’s Intervention Study study, we were able to adjust for a wide range of potential confounders, which is essential when studying the effects of alcohol consumption.
The results of this study are based on post hoc analysis, that is, the investigation of alcohol intake on mortality was not described in the original DAISY protocol.
In the alcohol groups, other than our reference group , the number of study participants was relatively low.
The participants in this study have been specifically selected for an intervention study and there might therefore be an over-representation of better functioning patients. Patients with more severe disease, those with significant comorbidity and patients living in a nursing home without a primary caregiver might have other effects of alcohol.
Alzheimers Diet: 16 Foods To Fight Dementia + What To Avoid
The best Alzheimers diet is Dr. Dale Bredesens KetoFLEX 12/3 diet. This slightly-flexible ketogenic diet can lower your risk of developing Alzheimers disease or dementia, especially in the earliest stages of cognitive decline.
This revolutionary diet also encourages 12-hour fasting periods so the body has more time to repair cell damage. Make sure to not eat within 3 hours of going to bed either.
By eating foods such as green leafy vegetables, fish, nuts, and even an occasional glass of red wine, you can reduce your chances of developing Alzheimers.
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In Wine Theres Health: Low Levels Of Alcohol Good For The Brain
- In Wine, Theres Health: Low Levels of Alcohol Good for the Brain
While a couple of glasses of red wine can help clear the mind after a busy day, new research shows that it may actually help clean the mind as well. The new study, which appears in the journal Scientific Reports, shows that low levels of alcohol consumption tamp down inflammation and helps the brain clear away toxins, including those associated with Alzheimers disease.
Prolonged intake of excessive amounts of ethanol is known to have adverse effects on the central nervous system, said Maiken Nedergaard, M.D., D.M.Sc., co-director of the Center for Translational Neuromedicine at the University of Rochester Medical Center and lead author of the study. However, in this study we have shown for the first time that low doses of alcohol are potentially beneficial to brain health, namely it improves the brains ability to remove waste.
The finding adds to a growing body of research that point to the health benefits of low doses of alcohol. While excessive consumption of alcohol is a well-documented health hazard, many studies have linked lower levels of drinking with a reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases as well as a number of cancers.