Women have a natural advantage when it comes to memory. Specifically, women tend to have strong verbal memory skills – the kind of memory that recalls words and names.
Unfortunately, this is a situation where an advantage can become a disadvantage – because according to a new study, having sharp memory skills can actually hide the early signs of Alzheimer’s disease.
And that means your doctor may miss the mark on making an early diagnosis, which is critical to catching Alzheimer’s early enough to be able to slow or even stop cognitive impairment before it’s too late.
In the new study, researchers asked 1,300 older patients to memorise a list of words, recall them immediately, and then recall them again 30 minutes later.
Not surprisingly, women performed better than men – and their memory skills persisted, even when their brains exhibited the same glucose metabolising problem associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
The theory is that women are able to draw upon their mastery of verbal memory skills in order to outrun the earliest visible effects of Alzheimer’s – but not the physical effects.
That means if you seem fine to those around you, you may not actually be fine.
So, it’s important to recognize MULTIPLE early signs of Alzheimer’s disease – and that goes for you, your loved ones, AND your doctor.
Verbal memory lapses are just one early indicator. Others include:
• Signs of spatial memory loss, like losing your way or having difficulty with depth perception
• Showing poor judgment with money, and
• Worsening of mood, personality, or social skills.
If you’re an older woman, there’s no time like the present to start protecting your brain to keep Alzheimer’s at bay. Because once you start showing the signs, it may be too late to do much of anything about it.
While there’s no “cure” for Alzheimer’s, and no sure-fire way of preventing it, there’s plenty you can to do reduce your risk and improve your odds – and your overall health.
• Fatten up your brain. Omega-3 fatty acids prevent damage to brain cells and reverse aging in your grey matter.
• Ditch the stomach acid-blocking drugs, which are known to trigger dementia. Manage heartburn naturally with a magnesium supplement, turmeric, and a daily probiotic.
• Drink peppermint tea. It’ll calm your stomach and power your brain.
• Maintain a healthy weight. Obesity puts you at higher risk for dementia, so keep the pounds off with a back-to-basics nutritional approach like the Paleo Diet.
• Try acupuncture. This ancient needle therapy may actually slow or halt memory loss.
Dr. Glenn S. Rothfeld
Nutrition & Healing
Women’s Memory Advantage Might Skew Alzheimer’s Diagnosis, medlineplus.gov/news/fullstory_161328.html
Women may have better verbal memory skills than men during early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, news-medical.net/news/20161005/Women-may-have-better-verbal-memory-skills-than-menc2a0during-early-stages-of-Alzheimers-disease.aspx
10 Early Signs and Symptoms of Alzheimer’s, alz.org/10-signs-symptoms-alzheimers-dementia.asp