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  • Herbal Remedies Rather Than Prophylactic Antibiotics To Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease?

    July 27, 2016: by Bill Sardi

    With evidence that bacteria and viruses may be causing Alzheimer’s disease, [Science Alert March 2016] the obvious use of antibiotics is now posed as an antidote. [Daily Mail UK July 27, 2016; Scientific Reports July 21, 2016]  Other studies also provide confirmation for the use of antibiotics for brain health. [Neurobiology Learning Memory May 2015]

    Antibiotics given to lab animals reduce levels of a brain protein (beta amyloid) linked with Alzheimer’s.  The intriguing part of the study was that antibiotics worked indirectly by killing off germs in the animals’ gut (intestines).

    The idea of placing humans on prophylactic antibiotics is of course unthinkable given the risk of antibiotic resistance and other side effects from chronic antibiotic drug therapy.

    The use of natural herbal antibiotics, particularly those that don’t induce germ resistance, comes to mind.

    Allicin, the active ingredient in fresh-crushed garlic cloves, is a natural medicine candidate. [European Journal Pharmacology Sept 2015]  It is allicin, not other components of garlic, that provides this anti-inflammatory protection in the brain. [Molecules Oct 31, 2014]  Garlic is shown to be effective against germ-resistant bacteria. [Journal Food Protectiion March 2002]  Commercially available garlic pills may not yield allicin due to stomach acid inactivating the enzyme (alliinase) that yields allicin. [Journal Agriculture Food Chemistry May 2001]  The use of an alkalinized garlic powder that neutralizes the negative effect of stomach acid to facilitate the production of allicin assuredly produces allicin with all of its antibiotic properties. []

    Furthermore, antibiotics work by calming the activity of microglia, which provide immune defense in the brain.  There are other small natural molecules that can pass through the blood/brain barrier and normalize the microglia, such as the red wine molecule resveratrol. [International Immunopharmacology Sept 2015; Cellular Molecular Neurobiology Oct 2015]   Resveratrol given in middle age to laboratory animals improves their memory in old age! [Scientific Reports Jan 2016]

    Additionally, germs (bacteria, viruses) get into the brain via an inflammatory breakdown of the protective blood/brain barrier.  Resveratrol reduces the breakdown of the blood/brain barrier that allows germs to enter the brain. [Biomaterials Sept 2013; Neurology Oct 15, 2015; MedicalXpress July 27 2016]

    And resveratrol not only blocks entry of viruses it inhibits herpes simplex, a common virus that is infects 70% of the population over 50 years old that can enter the brain and infect neurons.  [Virus Research July 2, 2015]

    Recently resveratrol was also demonstrated to remarkably alter gut bacteria to reduce accumulation of plaque in arteries. [MBio April 5, 0216] The promise of resveratrol’s profound ability to favorably control gut bacteria is only now being realized. [Food & Function June 2014]

    Due to anticipated germ resistance, mass prophylactic use of antibiotics in the adult population at large to prevent Alzheimer’s disease is out of the question, but resveratrol and garlic supplementation are practical, safe, economical and widely available and do not induce germ resistance.  ©2016 Bill Sardi,

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