New research is underway to prove how curcumin might help to prevent Alzheimer’s disease.
It’s hoped the studies will prove that circumin, which is the naturally occurring compound found in turmeric, can (when combined with intermittent fasting) prevent the build-up of damaging protein fragments which form between nerve cells in the brain and cause neurological problems.
It’s thought these fragments may be produced as part of the brain’s self-defence process and that their presence is a symptom of the disease. In a healthy brain, these fragments are broken down and eliminated, but problems occur if they begin to accumulate and form the hard, insoluble amyloid plaques known to be one of the major symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.
Previous related research at the Chinese University of Hong Kong in 2008 found that Biocurcumax, a patented extract available as a food supplement, helped prevent further build-up of these amyloid plaques.
“Research has already shown that highly bio-available curcumin, when combined with the essential oil of turmeric, can stop the progressive build-up of neurologically-damaging substances,” says Suphil Philipose of BioTurm, which is the UK distributor of Biocurcumax.
“This new research opens up a new world of hope to millions of people.”
New studies will now be geared towards showing the extent to which curcumin can induce autophagy and remove the damaged cells.
Should these prove successful, they will progress to a complete two-year study into autophagy at a cellular level to try and demonstrate the efficacy of the solution in clinical studies.
Curcumin is also thought to have a positive effect on apoptosis , which is the normal, controlled death of billions of cells in the adult body every day.
It’s thought that curcumin helps to mop up damaged cells and maintain a healthy balance of active mitochondria, which is the ‘battery unit’ of every cell.
“The body’s own self-cleansing process – the very thing which helps it combat factors such as poor diet, lack of sleep, lack of exercise, and the mental strain of work and everyday life – is actually its own Achilles Heel, contributing to the development of Alzheimer’s,” says Philipose.
“We believe that if we can now induce the self-cleansing mechanism in the body using curcumin, and other natural tools such as fasting, we may have a pathway for preventing the disease.”