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front cover Focus sept 2009

Michael E. Ash, BSc.(Hons) DO. ND. F.Dip ION has written an overview from a clinical perspective of the emerging science related to the mucosal immune system and the health of the brain in relation to affect. Published by the in house journal from Allergy Research Group it provides a strategic approach to managing individuals using a novel probiotic strategy.

From our early days in utero until we die, the ability of the GI tract to renew and replenish itself and maintain a stable relationship with trillions of bacteria is astounding. On a typical day the innate immune system of our gastrointestinal tract will process more immunological information than the rest of our body in its entire lifetime. It’s an absolute immunological miracle we can consume antigenic particles of food and not drop down dead every time we do so.

Common Ills are Linked to Memory Loss

Friday, 25 September 2009 by
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coverPatients with Alzheimer’s disease who have common bacterial infections suffer greater memory loss, claims a recent study published in Neurology. The effect is said to be linked to increased levels of the pro-inflammatory cytokine tumour necrosis factor (TNFa) caused by systemic inflammation.

Previous research has suggested that acute systemic inflammation might exacerbate neurodegeneration, so the researchers, based at the University of Southampton, UK, measured the level of TNFa in the blood of 222 elderly people with Alzheimer’s disease and assessed their ability to perform cognitive tests over a 6 month period.

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Huffington Post, logo1Questions concerning the frequency of individuals being diagnosed as  on the autistic spectrum have been frequently raised over the last few years. Instinctively one can consider  there seems to be more individuals, especially in school age that require assistance. If you are aged 40 or more and can still remember primary school, you would most likely be hard pressed to think of more than 2-3 children in your school experience that appeared to require special support of some sort.

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cover-mediumUse of benzodiazepine anti-anxiety drugs (like Valium) reached epidemic proportions two decades ago, the use of which was enshrined in the Rolling Stones song ‘Mothers Little Helper’. While long-term side effects have led to a significant decrease in use in recent times, modern benzodiazepine derivatives are still widely prescribed.

Drugs vs. Nutrients
Although nutritional approaches to anxiety have not seen much use by the medical profession, consumers have obtained some degree of anxiolytic relief through the use of such OTC items as B-complex vitamins, magnesium, GABA, and herbs like valerian.

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Comment:

cover-mediumA combination of vitamin D3 and curcumin, from tumeric, may boost the immune system, and help it clear the protein plaques linked to Alzheimer’s, says a new study.

The new data, published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, may lead to new approaches in preventing Alzheimer’s by using vitamin D3 alone or in combination with natural or synthetic curcumin to boost the immune system in protecting the brain against beta-amyloid.

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Research: In this study, researchers measured blood levels of total homocysteine ((t)Hcy), vitamin B(12) and folic acid in patients with Parkinson s disease (PD) and in age-matched controls, and searched for possible associations between these levels with smoking, alcohol consumption, L-DOPA treatment and disease duration in PD patients.

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Vitamin D insufficiency is common in the United States; the elderly and African-Americans are at particularly high risk of deficiency. This review, written for a broad scientific readership, presents a critical overview of scientific evidence relevant to a possible causal relationship between vitamin D deficiency and adverse cognitive or behavioural effects. Topics discussed are 1)

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This review is part of a series intended for non specialists that will summarise evidence relevant to the question of whether causal relations exist between micronutrient deficiencies and brain function. Here, we focus on experiments that used cognitive or behavioural tests as outcome measures in experimental designs that were known to or were likely to result in altered brain concentrations of the n–3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) during the perinatal period of “brain growth spurt.”

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