June is Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month. While estimates vary, experts suggest that more than 5 million Americans have Alzheimer’s disease. There’s been a lot of research on complementary health approaches for Alzheimer’s.
A variety of dietary supplements including ginkgo, omega-3 fatty acids/fish oil, vitamins B and E, Asian ginseng, grape seed extract, and curcumin have been studied, but none has been conclusively shown to prevent Alzheimer’s or slow its progression. Additional research on some supplements that have appeared promising in laboratory studies, including curcumin, fish oil, and grape seed extract, is under way.
Preliminary studies suggest that some mind and body practices may help with symptoms related to Alzheimer’s. For example, some studies have shown that music therapy may improve agitation, depression, and quality of life in some people with Alzheimer’s disease.
Don’t use complementary health approaches as a reason to postpone seeing a health care provider about memory loss. Treatable conditions such as depression, bad reactions to medications, or thyroid, liver, or kidney problems can impair memory.