Cognitive Decline improvement
by Sue Kira, Naturopath & Clinical Nutritionist
Client name and identifying information changed
A husband and wife came to see me; the husband had a degree of cognitive decline. Their doctor could not say if he was heading for Dementia/Alzheimer’s at that stage and all tests had been ‘normal’.
Rather than wait until things were not normal, they wanted to see if there was anything that could be done to stop potential progression towards dementia.
There was no family history of dementia, which was a plus, but the husband had worked in some toxic environments and had a sweet tooth. He loved his coffee, with two sugars, as well as toast and bread. Now retired, he didn’t have much stress, or much to motivate him and was ‘happy’ doing not much at all. He checked out in front of the TV at night and sometimes during the day.
He seemed oblivious to the fact that there was anything wrong, but his wife had another story (which is why she came along). She shared how she would ask him to do something and sometime later he would swear that she never asked at all.
His forgetfulness was increasing. Even when he had a list of jobs to do, he’d forget he had a list. He would forget how to do simple tasks that were part of his prior life and he was becoming dangerous when driving by not being fully attentive. The list went on, but you get the picture.
We ran some tests including toxicity testing which showed high levels of aluminium and some mercury which we dealt with. After this there was no improvement or further deterioration in his condition – no better and no worse.
We then looked at his diet and lifestyle habits which he was more interested in doing after we tackled the toxins. It appeared something was clearer for him as he was now making these decisions for himself.
We made sure he had a diet regime with a good balance of carbs, good fats and protein, while keeping the carbs as low impact as possible (low GI, low starch, non-stimulating).
I also suggested a mini-detox to get him started where he eliminated coffee, starchy foods, gluten, dairy products, food additives and sugar. In other words, a very healthful, wholesome, nutritious, anti-inflammatory diet.
We also got him to exercise more…a joint effort of my suggestions and his family, to get together to play entertaining active games in the backyard, going out for walks, hikes, paddling a kayak and so on. Fun activities!
Through these activities, he connected with people and took himself away from a ‘blank, passive’ existence to an ‘engaged, active’ lifestyle. In other words, he got more out of life.
The combination of the right diet with the activities, connection with people, getting out in the fresh air charged with healthy ‘negative ions’, more vitamin D from the sun, more stimulation, more fun and healthy eating made an impact.
Six weeks after his previous visit he returned with his wife and a son. They said how much better he was and how they were delighted to have their husband and father back.