Decoding Brain Health: Supplements Offer Hope for Reversing Cognitive Decline and Early Alzheimer’s

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Along with providing extensive peer-reviewed research on supplements for reversing Alzheimer’s, this article proposes 3 alternative supplement strategies. This article also links to Fullscript where you can buy anti-dementia supplements for reversing cognitive decline through Fullscript’s secure healthcare formulary and get free shipping and 20% off the retail price of professional-grade supplements.

When you or a loved one is beginning to show signs of cognitive decline, it’s time to dive into some of the groundbreaking and honestly really exciting new research on the prevention and reversal of cognitive decline. A study was published in 2022 that shows that 84% of people experiencing “Mild Cognitive Impairment” or dementia were able to improve their functioning through personalized approaches based on their individual assessments. [PMC9484109].

Causes of Dementia

Cognitive decline is not caused by any one thing. It’s always a combination of factors. This is why billions of dollars in drug research have failed to produce any effective drug treatment. They were looking for 1 magic bullet for a problem that develops over the course of decades and has multiple factors active in its development. They couldn’t possibly succeed with a single-drug approach because cognitive decline is driven by many factors.

Cognitive decline has been likened to having a barn roof with 3 dozen different holes of various sizes. In order to be successful, each person’s program must be personalized to identify which factors may be playing a part in their brain health issues. Major drivers of cognitive decline include:

  • Insulin resistance and diabetes. Poor glucose metabolism prevents neurons from having fuel available for energy production. So prevalent is this problem that Alzheimer’s is referred to as “Type 3 Diabetes”.
  • Inflammation. Inflammation damages neurons.
  • Toxicity. Environmental toxins are everywhere. Heavy metals like lead and mercury kill neurons. Mold toxins can cause a type of “inhalational Alzheimer’s.” Glyphosate (the main ingredient in Roundup TM) is prevalent in grains and is also neurotoxic. [PMC9101768]
  • Vascular Insufficiency. Lack of optimal blood flow to all parts of the brain starves brain cells of oxygen and nutrients.
  • Trauma. Physical damage to neurons related to head trauma may cause later brain dysfunction.
  • Poor Mitochondrial Energy Production. [PMC5724505]

Not many years ago, medical researchers thought that older adults were incapable of generating new brain cells. As the years have gone by, we’ve discovered this thinking is dead wrong. In fact, the birth of new brain cells is thought to be critical to our mood and emotional health. Hormones and vitamins are critical to supporting the creation of new brain cells. [PMC8533598]

A Personalized Multi-Factorial Approach To Brain Health

While billions of dollars have been unsuccessful in finding a drug treatment to stop Alzheimer’s, a personalized multi-factorial approach has been largely successful. It involves:

  • Specialized Lab Testing. Many tests are needed to investigate all the possible areas that need to be addressed to figure out what might be causing the cognitive decline and what treatments might be needed to reverse these factors.
  • Diet changes The optimal diet will be ketogenic with intermittent fasting to improve the neuron’s ability to produce energy. It will include berries every day, high-fiber foods, fish, and vegetables consistent with the MIND diet.
  • Daily exercise Physical activity produces neuronal growth factors and supports the blood vessel structures that are needed to deliver oxygen and nutrients to brain cells.
  • Cognitive Stimulation New learning and mental stimulation is important. Social connections are also critical to maintaining brain health.
  • Stress Management Cortisol is the major stress hormone released from the adrenal glands. It causes inflammation, worsens insulin resistance, and is toxic to the neurons of the hippocampus memory center of the brain.
  • Optimal Sleep Sleep is critical to allow the brain to clear toxins that naturally build up. Also, many people have undiagnosed sleep apnea, which if left untreated, would lead to the nightly death of untold numbers of neurons from oxygen deprivation.
  • Nutritional supplementation A wide variety of nutritional supplements have been studied in double-blind, placebo-controlled trials. Many have been found to improve functioning in people with cognitive decline.

How Supplements Work to Support Nerve Cells

Vitamins and Minerals Support Basic Biochemical Reactions

There are over 40 different essential vitamins and minerals. Each and every one of these is needed in every cell, including every nerve cell. A deficiency in any ONE of these essential nutrients will make each cell in your body less efficient in the chemical reactions it must carry out to convert one substance to another.

For example, half of the US population does not meet recommended intakes for magnesium. This mineral is required for over 300 cellular reactions. A deficiency in magnesium can cause muscle weakness and cramps, fatigue and low energy levels, insomnia and poor quality sleep, mental confusion and irritability, high blood pressure, loss of appetite, and other problems. These symptoms are very difficult to connect with this single mineral deficiency and serum blood tests don’t reflect magnesium levels inside the cells.

A similar situation exists with each one of the essential nutrients. Since every brain cell requires everything any other cell needs, it’s important to make sure all the essential nutrients are available.

Anti-Oxidant and Anti-Inflammatory Supplements

The production of energy inside every cell results in the production of reactive oxygen species. But brain cells are so much more affected by inflammation and oxidative damage because of their massive metabolic demands. While the brain is only 2% of the body’s weight, it accounts for 20% of the body’s metabolic activity.

For this reason, it’s important to have adequate antioxidant nutrients available such as Vitamin C, Vitamin E, and Selenium. If they are not available in adequate quantities, there will be oxidative damage within the cells.

Brain inflammation is thought to be one of the primary processes driving neurodegeneration. Anti-inflammatory substances such as curcumin, fish oil, quercetin, Vitamin D, Vitamin C, and CQ10 are some of the substances that have anti-inflammatory properties.

Structural Components of Nerve Cells

DHA is one of the critical structural components of the cell walls of brain cells. It makes up a significant proportion of the cell membranes of nerve cells, so it’s critical to get adequate amounts through diet or supplements. DHA can be obtained through “SMASH fish” (wild salmon, maceral, anchovies, sardines, and herring). If supplements are used to provide DHA, the freshness and quality are critical because oxidized DHA in poor-quality supplements will definitely do far more harm than good.

Supplements to Reduce Insulin Resistance

Alzheimer’s is often called “Type 3 Diabetes” because of the prevalence of insulin resistance as a driving force in people with cognitive decline. With insulin resistance, glucose can’t get into the brain cells to be used for energy. So any supplement that can reduce insulin resistance has the potential to improve brain function.

Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) is an omega-3 fatty acid that has been shown to improve nerve function and reduce nerve damage in conditions such as diabetic neuropathy. A small study of Alzheimer’s patients showed that it reduced insulin resistance and even improved cognitive scores in those with insulin resistance. Reference: PMC4437336.

Nutrients to Support Basic Detoxification Pathways

When it comes to nutritional supplements and teas marketed as “detox” there are many that are simply laxatives. Let’s be clear that these are not what we are talking about here.

Toxins are one of the main causes of neurodegeneration. These might include heavy metals, mold toxins, BPA from plastics, and chemicals such as glyphosate in wheat and other chemicals in the air, food, and water. Americans are often living in a toxic soup of which they are unaware.

The liver is our primary organ for detoxification. It requires the following nutrients for “Phase 1” detoxification: Vitamin B2, B3, B6, B12, folic acid, glutathione, and flavinoids. Then, for “phase 2” of the detoxification process, the liver needs methionine, cysteine, magnesium, glutathione, vitamins B5, B12, folic acid, glycine, taurine, glutamine, and choline.

Nerve Growth Factors

Here’s where research has been advancing rapidly in the past several years. Many double-blind human trials have been published recently for a wide variety of plant compounds and many have been found to be effective in reversing cognitive decline.

Many of these studies are criticized for their small size, but this is analogous to criticizing Orville and Wilbur Wright for not flying far enough on their first attempt. Everyone knows that we need more research and that’s not a reason to discount the research we have now.


How We Choose The BEST Supplements For Recovering Your Brain Health

The following research and product recommendations/dosages are extensive and costly. Several things were taken into account to create the product recommendations that follow. They include:

  • Prioritization of the best-researched substances. Although many nutritional substances are promising, we have prioritized the nutrients that are backed up by controlled research in people experiencing cognitive decline.
  • Researched Dosages that have been found to be effective. Wherever possible, the selected products provide the amounts found to be effective in the clinical research. Most supplements marketed for “brain health” provide various combinations of these researched substances, but provide doses far smaller than those shown to be effective in the research. After carefully searching for products to combine the extensive list of elements below, we concluded that effective dosages used in clinical studies are far easier to achieve with individual products. On the other hand, higher dosages may not necessarily be required when many nutrients are working synergistically together.
  • Comprehensiveness. The list below is designed to be a complete list of the dietary supplements considered most promising for brain health.

When you purchase linked products presented on this page, Supplement Sciences, LLC receives affiliate fees so that our dietitians can continue to create great content.

Thank you for your support!

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The Best Combination Brain Supplement

It can be mind-boggling to put together the combination of nutrients that are shown to be effective from the research on cognitive decline and dementia. If you want to simplify the job of choosing supplements for brain health, Brain & Body Power Max by BrainMD may be your best option. It includes many, but not all of the ingredients that are known to be effective for cognitive health.

Brain & Body Power Max by BrainMD

Three powerful brain health supplements in a simple packet to support healthy memory, cognition and focus* The most advanced memory-directed formula – perfectly portioned into convenient daily packets including a multi-vitamin-mineral, maximum memory-boosting nutrients and omega-3 fish oil for complete daily nutrition.* Suggested Dose: Take two packets daily with food, or as recommended by a nutritionally informed physician.

Each Packet Contains:

  • 2 Omega-3 Power softgels
  • 3 Brain & Memory Power Boost capsules
  • 2 Neurovite Plus capsules

NeuroVite

Amount Per 4 Capsule Serving
Vitamin A (as retinyl palmitate) … 5000 IU
Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) … 200 mg
Vitamin D (as D3, cholecalciferol) … 2000 IU
Vitamin E (as d-alpha-tocopheryl acetate) … 30 IU
Vitamin K (as K2, menaquinone-7, MK-7) … 45 mcg
Thiamin (Vitamin B1) (as thiamin HCI) … 50 mg
Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) … 50 mg
Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) … 50 mg
Vitamin B5 (as d-calcium pantothenate) … 50 mg
Vitamin B6 (as pyridoxine HCI and
pyridoxal-5-phosphate
) … 25 mg
Folate (as Quatrefolic® methylfolate,
5-methyltetrahydrofolate, glucosamine salt
) … 400 mcg
Vitamin B12 (as methylcobalamin) … 500 mcg
Biotin (as d-biotin) … 500 mcg
Pantothenic acid (as d-calcium pantothenate) … 50 mg
Calcium (as pantothenate, citrate) … 20 mg
Iodine (as potassium iodide) … 75 mcg
Magnesium (as glycinate and malate) … 50 mg
Zinc (as glycinate) … 20 mg
Selenium (as high-selenium yeast) … 200 mcg
Copper (as glycinate) … 500 mcg
Manganese (as glycinate) … 5 mg
Chromium (as picolinate) … 200 mcg
Molybdenum (as sodium molybdate) … 50 mcg
High-gamma mixed tocopherols(Vitamin E) … 30 mg
Choline (as bitartrate) … 25 mg
Boron (as glycinate) … 1.5 mg
Silicon (as horsetail extract) … 3 mg
Luteincarotenoid … 3 mg
Zeaxanthincarotenoid … 300 mcg
Hesperidin flavonoid complex … 20 mg
Resveratrol (as trans-resveratrol) … 10 mg
Pterostilbene (as pTeroPure™ trans-pterostilbene) … 20 mcg
Fruit & Vegetable Blend … 140mg
(wild blueberries, broccoli sprouts, tomato, spinach, acai, carrot, strawberry, alfalfa sprouts)
Proprietary Brain Boosting Blend … 575mg
(acetylcarnitine, alpha-lipoic acid,
phosphatidylserine/PS, coenzyme Q10/CoQ)

Digestive Enzyme Blend … 30mg (lipase, amylase, lactase, cellulose, protease)


Omega-3 Power

Amount Per 4 Softgel Serving:
Omega-3 Fatty Acids, Total … 3.2 g
EPA (Eicosapentaenoic Acid) … 1.72 g
DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid) … 1.16 g
Other Omega-3 Fatty Acids … 320 mg


Brain and Memory Power Boost

Amount Per 6 Capsule Serving
PhosphatidylSerine (PS)  … 150mg
(as Sharp PS® Green from sunflower lecithin)
AcetylCarnitine … 1000mg
(as acetyl-l-carnitine HCI)
N-AcetylCysteine (NAC) … 600 mg
Alpha-Lipoic Acid … 300 mg
Ginkgo Biloba extract, 24/6 … 120mg
(PureLeaf®) (Ginkgo Biloba, leaf)
Huperzine A … 150 mcg

A Lower-Dose/Lower-Cost Combination Alternative

Some readers have budget limitations or feel they can choose a less aggressive approach given their age and level of cognitive function. If this is the case, Brain and Body Power by BrainMD may be the best fit.

Brain & Body Power by BrainMD

Three powerful brain health supplements in a simple packet to support healthy memory, cognition and focus* The easiest way to get your daily mind and body essentials – parceled into convenient packets including a brain optimizing multi-vitamin-mineral, and pure omega-3 fish oil capsules.*

Amount Per 4 Capsules Serving
Vitamin A (as retinyl palmitate) … 5000 IU
Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) … 200 mg
Vitamin D (as D3, cholecalciferol) … 2000 IU
Vitamin E (as d-alpha-tocopheryl acetate) … 30 IU
Vitamin K (as K2, menaquinone-7, MK-7) … 45 mcg
Thiamin (Vitamin B1) (as thiamin HCI) … 50 mg
Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) … 50 mg
Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) … 50 mg
Vitamin B5 (as d-calcium pantothenate) … 50 mg
Vitamin B6 (as pyridoxine HCI and pyridoxal-5-phosphate) … 25 mg
Folate (as Quatrefolic® methylfolate, …) … 400 mcg
Vitamin B12 (as methylcobalamin) … 500 mcg
Biotin (as d-biotin) … 500 mcg
Pantothenic acid (as d-calcium pantothenate) … 50 mg
Calcium (as pantothenate, citrate) … 20 mg
Iodine (as potassium iodide) … 75 mcg
Magnesium (as glycinate and malate) … 50 mg
Zinc (as glycinate) … 20 mg
Selenium (as high-selenium yeast) … 200 mcg
Copper (as glycinate) … 500 mcg
Manganese (as glycinate) … 5 mg
Chromium (as picolinate) … 200 mcg
Molybdenum (as sodium molybdate) … 50 mcg
High-gamma mixed tocopherols(Vitamin E) … 30 mg
Choline (as bitartrate) … 25 mg
Boron (as glycinate) … 1.5 mg
Silicon (as horsetail extract) … 3 mg
Luteincarotenoid … 3 mg
Zeaxanthincarotenoid … 300 mcg
Hesperidin flavonoid complex … 20 mg
Resveratrol (as trans-resveratrol) … 10 mg
Pterostilbene (as pTeroPure™ trans-pterostilbene) … 20 mcg
Fruit & Vegetable Blend … 140mg
(wild blueberries, broccoli sprouts, tomato, spinach, acai, carrot, strawberry, alfalfa sprouts)
Proprietary Brain Boosting Blend … 575mg
(acetylcarnitine, alpha-lipoic acid, phosphatidylserine/PS, coenzyme Q10/CoQ)
Digestive Enzyme Blend … 30mg (lipase, amylase, lactase, cellulose, protease)

Omega-3 Power

Amount Per 2 Softgels Serving
Omega-3 Fatty AcidsTotal … 1.6 g
EPA (Eicosapentaenoic Acid) … 860 mg
DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid) … 580 mg
Other Omega-3 Fatty Acids … 160 mg

Brain and Memory Power Boost

Amount Per 4 Capsules Serving
PhosphatidylSerine (PS)  … 100mg (as Sharp PS® Green from sunflower lecithin)
AcetylCarnitine … 666mg (as acetyl-l-carnitine HCI)
N-AcetylCysteine (NAC) … 400 mg
Alpha-Lipoic Acid … 200 mg
Ginkgo Biloba extract, 24/6 … 80mg (PureLeaf®) (Ginkgo Biloba, leaf)
Huperzine A … 100 mcg

Single-Supplement Approach for Brain Health

Given the extreme gravity of a diagnosis of early dementia and the staggering cost of assisted living, many people would want to choose a supplement regimen to provide the absolute maximum potential for recovery of cognitive function. Choosing single supplements is more costly and more complex, but allows the flexibility to choose all of the researched supplements at doses shown in the research to provide benefit. For this situation, a supplement plan has been developed containing all of the following individual supplements.

These are supplements that have been studied with various types of dementia and mild cognitive impairment:

Here is an up-to-date 2023 review of some supplements that have been studied in relation to dementia. [PMC10746024]

Access This Full List of Supplements On Fullscript:

Each of these supplements separately discussed in detail below. But first, here’s access to the full Brain Recovery Supplement Plan on Fullscript:

Start with Optimal Vitamin/Mineral Intake

Just like your car requires every single one of its parts to function properly, your neurons need every essential nutrient to be present, so we start with classic vitamins and minerals–things we should be getting from food, but often don’t get enough of. The list continues with anti-oxidants, anti-inflammatory nutrients, and nerve growth factors to support the development of new brain cells. Here’s the list.

There are over 40 different essential vitamins and minerals. Each and every one of these is needed in every cell, including every nerve cell. A deficiency in any ONE of these essential nutrients will make each cell in your body less efficient in the chemical reactions it must carry out to convert one substance to another. A recent trial showed that a daily multivitamin did improve cognition in older adults. [PMID: 36102337]

O.N.E. Multivitamin — Pure Encapsulations

Serving Size: 1 capsule / Dose: 1 per day

Amount Per Serving
Vitamin A … 1,125mcg (as vitamin A acetate and 73% beta carotene)
Vitamin C … 180mg (as ascorbic acid)
Vitamin D … 50mcg (as cholecalciferol) (D3) (2,000 IU)
Vitamin E … 20mg (as d-alpha tocopherol succinate)
Thiamin … 3mg (as thiamin HCl) (B1)
Riboflavin … 3mg (as vitamin B2 and 43% riboflavin 5′ phosphate (activated B2))
Niacin … 20mg (as niacinamide)
Vitamin B6 … 4mg (as pyridoxine HCl and 38% pyridoxal 5′ phosphate (activated B6))
Folate … 667mcg DFE (as Metafolin®, L-5-MTHF) (L-5-MTHF 400 mcg)
Vitamin B12 … 500mcg (as methylcobalamin)
Biotin … 300mcg
Pantothenic acid … 10mg (as calcium pantothenate) (B5)
Iodine … 150mcg (as potassium iodide)
Zinc … 25mg (as zinc citrate)
Selenium … 70mcg (as selenomethionine)
Manganese … 2mg (as manganese citrate)
Chromium … 200mcg (as chromium polynicotinate)
Molybdenum … 75mcg (as TRAACS™ molybdenum glycinate chelate)
Boron … 1mg (as boron glycinate)
Choline … 10mg (as choline bitartrate)
Inositol … 25mg
Coenzyme Q10 sustained-release … 50mg (as CoQ10 and as 18% from MicroActive® CoQ10-cyclodextrin complex)
Alpha lipoic acid … 50mg
FloraGLO® lutein … 3mg
Zeaxanthin … 500mcg
Lycopene … 500mcg


Vitamin D

Vitamin D deficiency is associated with a substantially increased risk of all-cause dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. [PMC4153851] People require different amounts of supplemental Vitamin D to keep their blood levels optimized. Each person’s dose of Vitamin D should be adjusted to achieve a Vitamin D Lab Value >50 ng/ml. (This can be easily ordered online and drawn at your local lab through the affiliate link.

Vitamin D (5000IU) K2 (100 mcg)

Adjust your dose to achieve a Lab Value of greater than 45 ng/ml, which many clinicians consider to be the optimal range for Vitamin D.

Vitamins D3 and K2 have been extensively studied regarding their roles in calcium metabolism.* Research indicates that a synergistic relationship exists between vitamin K2 and vitamin D3, especially in terms of bone strength and cardiovascular health.* While vitamin D3 is recognized for its role in calcium absorption and metabolism, it is vitamin K2 that directs calcium to bones rather than joint spaces and arteries.* This product is formulated with a clinically relevant dose of MK-7, a unique, soy-free form of vitamin K2 that has been shown to promote healthy vascular structures.*

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving
Vitamin D3 … 125mcg (5, 000IU) (as Cholecalciferol) (from Lanolin)
Vitamin K2 … 180mcg (as Menaquinone-7) (MK-7) (MenaQ7®)

Note: Vitamin K may interact with medications for blood-thinning. Consult a healthcare professional prior to use if you take this type of medication.

Folate

Low Folate can reduce homocysteine levels and risk for heart disease and cognitive decline. [PMC2935890] Homocysteine is a marker of inflammation and it is recommended that labs must be kept at less than <7. Order Lab (affiliate link)

B12

Lack of vitamin B12 is highly associated with brain dysfunction and fatigue as well as neuropathy that results in numbness and tingling. In fact, Cobalamin deficiency may cause a reversible type of dementia. [PMID 15681626]

Medications including those prescribed for reflux, as well as Metformin will impair absorption of B12. Lower levels of stomach acid in older adults also reduce B12 absorption.

It is considered critical to keep B12 levels above 500 for optimal brain function. Labs can be tested separately, or as a part of a more comprehensive lab test (affiliate links).


Low Dose Lithium

Research Dose: 0.3 / Product dose: 5 mg/day

Low-dose lithium can stimulate neurogenesis in the hippocampus memory center of the brain. After 3 months of lithium treatment with low lithium levels, a slowing of cognitive decline is observed in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. In patients with memory loss and Mild Cognitive Impairment, treatment with low-dose lithium reduced the Alzheimer’s disease conversion rate and longer cognitive stability was reported. Reference: PMID: 34119602

Note: This is a very low dose compared to what is prescribed for the treatment of bipolar disorder. In places where the water supply is very low in lithium, suicide rates are higher, suggesting that lithium is an essential trace mineral for brain health.

Lithium Orotate 5mg by Seeking Health

  • May help support cognitive health
  • May help support a healthy nervous system
  • May help support normal memory function
  • Bioavailable form

Lithium Orotate by Seeking Health provides 5 mg of lithium (as lithium orotate) per vegetarian capsule. Lithium orotate is a natural substance that consists of lithium (an alkali metal) and orotic acid, a transport carrier for lithium that may help increase its bioavailability. Lithium orotate can be taken in small doses due to its high absorption rate, as opposed to the popular lithium carbonate which is required at much higher doses and can have adverse effects. Lithium is known for its benefits in supporting neurological health.*
Take 1 capsule daily with or without food, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner.

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving
Lithium … 5mg (as lithium orotate)


Vitamin C

People eating a varied diet including fruits and vegetables are very unlikely to have a vitamin C deficiency, but a diet of tea and toast doesn’t cut it.


Vitamin C has a role in central nervous system functions such as neuronal differentiation, maturation, myelin formation, and modulation of the catecholaminergic systems. A cross-sectional trial done on 80 healthy adults of varying ages indicated a direct link between higher plasma vitamin C concentrations and better cognitive performance. Participants with adequate levels of plasma vitamin C had better performance on these tasks as compared to those with deficient vitamin C levels (<28 μmol/L). The study suggests a meaningful association between adequate plasma vitamin C concentrations and preserved cognitive functions. [PMC6454201]


Vitamin E

Vitamin E is a fat-soluble antioxidant that prevents oxidation of polyunsaturated fatty acids in cell walls by scavenging the lipid peroxyl radicals. The potential therapeutic or preventive role of vitamin E in brain aging and age-related cognitive disorders is still a subject of debate. 31 While large-scale clinical trials have failed to demonstrate major cognitive benefits, vitamin E deficiency has been consistently found to be associated with Alzheimer’s disease and MCI in recent human studies. Reference: PMC6645610

A trial published in 2014 found that 2000 IU/d of alpha-tocopherol resulted in slower functional decline among patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease. It should be noted that 2000 IU is a very large dose capable of affecting blood clotting and medication interactions. A dose of 400 IU per day is very reasonable because the RDA is set at 22 IU per day and the Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine has set an upper tolerable intake level (UL) for vitamin E at 1,500 IU per day for supplemental vitamin E. [PMC4109898]


Fish Oil (Omega 3) Phospholipids

“Biological importance of DHA in the development of brain and retina are well established. Recent studies highlighted the beneficial effect of ω-3 fatty acids in Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) which may be attributed to their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiapoptotic and neurotrophic properties. ” [PMID: 30084334]

Phospholipid forms of fish oil are thought to have superior transport into brain cells for people carrying the APOe4 gene which predisposes people to early Alzheimer’s disease. [PMC6338661]


NAC (N acetyl-cysteine): A Precursor of Glutathione

Dose: 600 mg-2000 mg per day

“NAC is a glutathione precursor and shows antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities. NAC may be considered helpful in therapies to counteract neurodegenerative and mental health diseases. Furthermore, this compound has been evaluated for its neuroprotective potential in the prevention of cognitive aging dementia. NAC is inexpensive, commercially available, and no relevant side effects were observed after its administration.” [PMC6320789]


Nerve Growth Factors

Magnesium L Threonate

Magnesium is critical for cellular energy production, which is thought to be one of the major problems in cognitive decline. Most forms of magnesium do not easily cross the blood-brain barrier, but Magnesium L-Threonate does cross into the brain easily.

An open-label trial explored the effects of Magnesium L-Threonate in 15 patients with mild to moderate dementia. Findings showed an improvement in metabolism in the cerebrum of the brain. Subjects also had improved cognitive functioning after 12 weeks of treatment. Reference: [PMC6242385]

Another blinded trial was conducted with a trademarked form of Magnesium L-threonate. The trial showed improvement in working memory and an approximate 9-year improvement in executive function. This change would likely have a very meaningful effect on the person’s quality of life.

But not all people responded to the Magnesium L Threonate supplements. Researchers found that they could test the increase in red blood cell magnesium after 12 weeks of supplementation and predict who would respond to the supplement. [PMC4927823]

Magnesium Threonate for Brain Health

This more costly form of magnesium has been shown to cross the blood-brain barrier more efficiently than other forms. This is very important in people dealing with cognitive issues.


Magnesium L-Threonate

Magnesium (Mg) is known to play a major role in cellular metabolism and is critical for normal nervous system function.* Recent research has demonstrated that Mg also helps to regulate neuronal synapse density and that availability of Mg in the brain is necessary for the stability and adaptability of these neuronal connections.* Preclinical studies indicate that Magtein® may support healthy cognitive function, learning, and memory, and may promote a relaxed mood.* Magtein® is protected under a family of US patents, pending patents, and is protected worldwide. Magtein® is a trademark of Magceutics®, Inc. and is distributed exclusively by AIDP, Inc

  • Magtein® Magnesium L-Threonate
  • Delivers Magnesium to the Nervous System*
  • Promotes Healthy Cognitive Function* 

Suggested Use: Take 3 capsules daily in divided doses (take 1 capsule during the daytime, preferably in mid-afternoon and take 2 capsules one hour before sleep), or as directed by your healthcare practitioner.

Amount Per 3 Capsule Serving
Magnesium ... 144 mg(elemental) (from 2,000mg Magtein® Magnesium L Threnonate)
Magtein® … 2g (2,000mg) (Magnesium L Threnonate)


Lion’s Mane (Hericium erinaceus): Nerve growth factor induction

Research Dose: 1-3 grams/day

When selecting supplements, it is helpful to know that hericenones are abundant in fruiting body of the mushroom, but erinacines are mainly contained in
mycelia. In the studies described below, both the fruiting body components and mycelium components appear to have the ability to help.

Cell cultures of neurons exposed to expressed more nerve growth factor when exposed to Hericium erinaceus. Reference: PMID: 18758067

Fruiting Body: One study evaluated the improvement of cognitive functions by taking supplements containing 3.2 grams per day of the fruiting body of H. erinaceus for 12 weeks. significantly improved cognitive functions. Researchers consider that the improvement in this study were mainly due to hericenones. Reference: PMID: 31413233

Mycelium: A trial of patients with early Alzheimer’s disease supplemented for 49 weeks with three capsules per day containing 350 mg per day standardized 5 mg/g erinacine A (active ingredient). The treatment group improved on standardized tests while the placebo group declined. Reference: PMC7283924  

Lion’s Mane (Hericium erinaceus): Nerve growth factor induction

THE SMARTEST MUSHROOM IN THE KINGDOM.
Lion’s Mane can help spark cognition, focus and clarity. Om Lion’s Mane capsules are a smart way to help fuel your brain.‡
Take three (3) capsules per day with a glass of water.

Serving Size: 3 Capsules (2001mg)

Amount Per Serving
100% Organic Om Mushroom Blend … 2000mg
Lion’s Mane (Hericium erinaceus) mycelial biomass and fruit body powder cultured on organic whole oats.


Bacopa moniera

The herb may protect brain cells from degenerative changes caused by neuroinflammation. [PMID: 35021981] Bacopa monnieri may bind to amyloyd beta plaques in Alzheimer’s Disease. [PMC6669844]

B. monniera (300 mg) B. monniera may improve higher-order cognitive processes in health people. [PMID: 11498727]

Huperzine A-Better Daily Function

  • Researchers have studied Huperzine A at doses of 100-400 mcg twice a day. They have found that it keeps acetylcholinesterase enzymes from breaking down acetylcholine in the brain, protects neurons from oxidative injury, and increases the activity of nerve growth factor. [PMC8587556]
  • Huperzine A (HupA) acts in a number of different ways: Huperzine A is thought to keep our acetylcholinesterase enzymes from breaking down acetylcholine in the brain. It also protects neurons from oxidative injury that is caused by amyloid beta and protects against mitochondrial dysfunction. Huperzine A also increases the activity of nerve growth factor. PMC8587556
  • A 2014 review of the literature showed that Huperzine A could significantly improve the test scores and Activity of Daily Living scores of Alzheimer’s and Vascular Dementia patients. They also noted improvement in memory in patients with Alzheimer’s. [PMC4137276]

Acetyl-L-Carnitine

Clinical research shows that taking acetyl-L-carnitine 1.5-3 grams daily for 3-12 months might slow the rate of Alzheimer’s disease progression and improve memory, some measures of cognitive function, and behavioral performance. A review of the studies on Acetyl-L-Carnitine showed beneficial effects on both the clinical scales and the psychometric tests by 3 months and increased over time. Reference: PMID: 12598816

Acetyl-L-Carnitine: A Nerve Growth Factor

Acetyl-L-carnitine can pass the blood brain barrier. L-carnitine is essential for the processes that allow for fatty acids to serve as one of the primary energy sources for the body. Skeletal and heart muscles obtain most of their energy from fat breakdown. For these tissues to produce energy from fat, fatty acids must be transported to specific locations (mitochondria) within cells. L-carnitine is involved in multiple steps in the transfer of individual fatty acids for energy production into the cells, allowing for a healthy breakdown of fat.*

  • Support energy production by helping to transport fatty acids
  • Maintain healthy metabolism
  • Sustain healthy brain and nervous system function
  • Support healthy neurotransmitter synthesis

Take 1 capsule daily with or without food or as directed by your healthcare professional. Do not take within 5 hours of bedtime as it may interfere with sleep.

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving
Acetyl-L-Carnitine … 500mg (as acetyl-L-carnitine hydrochloride)

Vinpocetine

Researchers have studied Vinpocetine at a dose of 5 mg twice a day. Vinpocetine enhances cerebral utilization of oxygen and glucose and consequently improves cerebral functions including memory. Reference: PMC4160700

Gotu kola (Centella asiatica) For Improved Memory

Research Dose: 500mg once or twice a day

Gotu Kola has been found to improve some aspects of cognition in elderly women with dementia and in people with mild cognitive impairment. Reference: DOI 10.1088/1755-1315/755/1/012064

Gotu kola (Centella asiatica) has been reported to have neuroprotective effects by different modes of action such as enzyme inhibition, prevention of amyloid plaque formation in Alzheimer’s disease, and decreasing oxidative stress. Reference: PMC3359802.

Gotu Kola protects the mitochondria energy production machinery of the cell. Mitochondrial dysfunction is a key driver of aging and neurodegenerative disease, including Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. Reference: PMC8275827

In a study of vascular dementia after stroke, gotu kola extract improved memory and executive function. Side effects that arose as a result of a gotu kola extract therapy of 1000 mg/day were constipation and itching. Reference: PMID: 27340413.

Gotu Kola Herb by Nature’s Way

Gotu kola has been used in Asian cultures, including Ayurveda, for hundreds of years. The plant itself is a member of the parsley family and is grown in Southern and Eastern Asia and South Africa. It’s often boiled down into a tea.* Nature’s Way Gotu Kola supports longevity and vitality – we like to call it good vibes in a bottle.*

Suggested Use:

Take 2 capsules daily, preferably with food.

Serving Size: 2 Capsules

Amount Per Serving

Gotu Kola … 950mg** (aerial parts)

Ginko Biloba – For Daily Functioning

Research Dose: Ginkgo 240 mg / Product Dose: 3 capsules per day

Ginko does not prevent or slow the progression of Alzheimer’s, but it does improve daily function. Most of the clinical studies on the effectiveness of ginkgo leaf for dementia have used standardized extracts prepared to contain approximately 24% flavone glycosides and 6% terpene lactones.

Ginko Biloba works in a number of ways:

  • as an antioxidant
  • It improves mitochondrial function
  • It stimulates cerebral blood flow,
  • It blocks neural cell death
  • It stimulates the creation of new neurons.

Reference: PMID: 21170694

Ginkgo Biloba 120mg By Ecological Formulas/Cardiovascular Research

Ginkgo Biloba is a special standardized herb commonly used in Europe and North America. Only the purest, standardized source of Ginkgo Biloba is used in this nutritional supplement.

Take one or two capsules per day, or as directed by a physician.

Ginkgo Biloba 120 mg

Polyphenols

Research Dose: 260 mg flavinoids/day

Polyphenols have shown a beneficial effect on age-related cognitive decline. This study evaluated the effect of a polyphenol-rich extract from grape and blueberry. A randomized, controlled trial of 60-70 year olds received 600 mg/day of PEGB (containing 258 mg flavonoids) or a placebo for 6 months. The study showed that PEGB improved age-related episodic memory decline in test subjects with the most cognitive impairments. [PMID: 30032176] A similar nutrient profile is available in the bilberry/grapeseed product below.

Bilberry + Grapeskin Polyphenols 280mg By Jarrow Formulas

Supports Vision*

Jarrow Formulas® Bilberry + Grapeskin Polyphenols is a synergistic blend of standardized flavonoid antioxidants.* The Swedish bilberry extract contains 25% polyphenols as anthocyanosides. The red grapeskin extract contains 30% polyphenols, including anthocyanins. These flavonoids support vision by enhancing antioxidant status in the eye and reducing capillary permeability and fragility.*

Take 1 capsule 1 to 2 times per day or as directed by your qualified healthcare professional.

Serving Size: One Capsule

Amount Per Serving
Swedish Bilberry Extract … 80mg
(Vaccinium myrtillus)(25% anthocyanosides)(fruit)
Grapeskin Extract … 200mg
(Vitis vinifera L.)(30% polyphenols)(pomace)

Curcumin/Turmeric – Anti-inflammatory

Dose: 250 mg w/95% curcuminoids

Curcumin has been shown to effectively maintain the normal structure and function of cerebral vessels, mitochondria, and synapses, reduce risk factors for a variety of chronic diseases, and decrease the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. [PMC5950688]

Curcumin BCM-95 by Progressive Labs

In a human cross-over study, the bioavailability of BCM-95, an enhanced preparation of cur-cumin was compared to that of turmeric 95% extract and to a formula containing
curcumin, lecithin and piperine. BCM-95 was absorbed faster,  more curcumin was absorbed into the bloodstream and high levels stayed in the body longer than the 95% extract.

 

2 vegetable capsules daily.

Serving Size: 2 capsules

Amount per Serving:
Curcumin BCM-95
 … 800mg


Citicoline –Improved Memory

Dose: 300-1000 mg/d

Citicoline is a an intermediate in the creation of cell membrane phospholipids and brain acetylcholine. Citicoline has been extensively used for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders associated with head trauma, stroke, brain aging, cerebrovascular pathology and Alzheimer’s disease. [PMID: 10669911]

CDP Choline 250mg –Jarrow Formulas

Supports Brain Function*

  • Stabilized CDP Choline Capsules
  • Brain Lipid Precursor
  • For phosophatidylcholine (PC)
  • 30% Brain Grey Matter = PC
  • Neurotransmitter Precursor: Acetyl-choline
  • Only Quality Cognizin® Material

Citicoline [stabilized CDP Choline (cytidine 5’-diphosphocholine)] is a naturally occurring intermediate involved in the synthesis of phosphatidylcholine, a major constituent of the grey matter of brain tissue (30%).* Citicoline consumption promotes brain metabolism by enhancing the synthesis of acetylcholine and restoring phospholipid content in the brain, both of which positively affect memory and other brain activity.*
Take 1 capsule up to 2 times per day with food or as directed by your qualified healthcare professional.

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving
Citicoline … 250mg (Cognizin®)(from Stabilized Cytidine 5′-Diphosphocholine)


Phosphatidylserine–Improved Test Scores

Research Dose: 300 mg/day

In one study, patients with likely Alzheimer’s were treated for 12 weeks with 100 mg phosphatidylserine three times per day or placebo. The supplemented group improved on several cognitive measures and it was noted that differences between treatment groups were most apparent among patients with less severe cognitive impairment. [PMID: 1609044] Another study concluded that 6 months of supplementation with Soy-phosphatidyl serine could improve the memory functions of the elderly with memory complaints. [PMC2966935]

Phosphatidyl Serine – Seeking Health

Phosphatidyl Serine is a phospholipid that supports a healthy stress response in the body. This supplement contains 150 mg of non-GMO sunflower sourced phosphatidylserine per capsule. Phospholipids are fat-like molecules that make up our flexible cell walls and allow hormones, neurotransmitters, and nutrients to function normally.*

Key Benefits and Actions*

  • Supports healthy concentration and cognition
  • Supports feelings of calm and healthy mood
  • Helps to support a healthy stress response

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving
Phosphatidylserine
 … 150mg (from sunflower lecithin)


Alpha Lipoic Acid

Research Dose: 600 mg/d

ALA has been linked to positive effects on diabetes which are significant risk factor for Alzheimer’s. In fact, diabetes is sometimes called type 3 diabetes. A study of 126 Alzheimer’s patients were divided based on whether they had diabetes. Their cognitive abilities were measured using a variety of tests. At the end of the 16 month study, 43% of Alzheimer’s patients with diabetes showed improvement in test scores, compared to a 23% improvement in Alzheimer’s patients without diabetes. These findings suggest that ALA therapy could be beneficial in slowing cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s patients, especially those with diabetes. [PMC4437336]

Alpha Lipoic Acid – 600 mg

  • Free Radical Scavenger*
  • With Grape Seed Extract & Bioperine®

Alpha-Lipoic Acid (ALA) is a versatile free radical scavenger that helps to maintain neural health by promoting nerve cell glutathione production, preserving optimal blood flow, and supporting normal nerve cell glucose utilization.* ALA may help to support the maintenance of healthy neural tissues, proper glucose metabolism, and normal cardiovascular function.* Bioperine® is a standardized pepper extract that is known to enhance the bioavailability of some nutrients.*

Bioperine® is a registered trademark of Sabinsa Corporation.

Take 1 capsule daily, preferably with a meal, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner.

Serving Size: One Veg Capsule

Amount Per Serving
Alpha-Lipoic Acid … 600mg†
(Granules)
Grape Seed Extract … 30mg†
(Vitis vinifera)(Standardized for Polyphenols)
Bioperine® … 5mg†


Saffron

Research Dose: 15 mg extract/ twice a day-125 mg

A 2020 review of 4 double-blind studies concluded that saffron improved cognition in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. [PMC8762181]

Optimized Saffron — Life Extension

Optimized Saffron Benefits:

  • Affects neurotransmitter signals to help reduce snacking
  • Helps support healthy weight management by reducing off-schedule eating
  • Provides appetite management support, without caffeine
  • This supplement should be taken in conjunction with a healthy diet and regular exercise program. Individual results are not guaranteed, and results may vary.

Suggested Use: Take one (1) capsule twice daily (morning and evening) with food or as recommended by a healthcare practitioner.

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving

Satiereal® saffron extract … 88.25mg (stigma) [std. to 0.3% safranal]


Hesperidin Methyl Chalcone

Dose: 500 mg

“The book goes into about 30 different compounds, bioflavonoids, polyphenols that increase this. Hesperidin is a great one because when you increase the rate of neurogenesis and synaptogenesis, the brain prunes about 50% of these pretty quickly, but hesperidin keeps the new brain cells’ new connections alive so you get almost 100% survival rate.”-Brant Cortright, Ph.D

Hesperidin can effectively protect neurons from damage induced by oxidative stress. Moreover, it enhances cognitive functions through various mechanisms such as elevating BDNF and reversing the disruptive effect of global cerebral I/R on memory. [PMC6384806] [PMC9370591]

Hesperidin by Ecological Formulas/Cardiovascular Research

Hesperidin is a scientifically designed dietary supplement which contains a natural bioflavonoid compound from citrus fruits. Each capsule contains 500mg of Hesperidin.

Suggested Use:

Take one capsule daily or as directed by a physician.

Serving Size: 1 Capsule

Amount Per Serving

Hesperidin … 500mg

Ascorbic Acid … 30 mg


Reishi Mushroom (Ganoderma Lucidum)

Although human trials are still lacking, Reishi has been used for over 2,000 years in Asia as “the mushroom of immortality.” In addition to beta-glucans, Reishi contains triterpenes. These chemical compounds can boost Nerve Growth Factor, which supports acetylcholine circuits, and Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor, which supports the maturation of new nerve cells and overall brain adaptability. [PMC5233449] Other researchers found that decline was halted in a rat model of Alzheimer’s and attributed the effect to a change in methylation. [PMC6444160]

REISHI MUSHROOM (GANODERMA LUCIDUM)

Dose: 1 tablet, twice a day

  • Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum), traditionally known as the “mushroom of immortality, ” is considered a superior tonic for supporting overall health of body and mind.*
  • Super Reishi is made from the mushroom fruiting body grown on logs and extracted using both hot water and alcohol.
  • Mushroom Wisdom, with over 25 years of mushroom expertise, is committed to offering you the finest and most effective supplements, manufacturing them in a certified cGMP facility.

Take 4 tablets once per day or 2 tablets twice per day

Serving Size: 4 Tablets

Amount Per Serving
Reishi … 700mg
(Ganoderma lucidum)
Fruiting Body Double Extract
Vitamin C … 80mg


Propolis

Dose: 350 mg

A controlled study in elderly Japanese demonstrated that propolis is effective in improving cognitive functions such as memory, information processing, complex attention, and concentration.

Propolis 1500mg — NOW Foods

Propolis is a mixture of resins collected by honey bees from tree buds, sap and other plant sources and is used to seal small gaps in the beehive. The function of Propolis is to reinforce the hive’s integrity and stability, as well as to maintain its sanitary state. NOW® Propolis is collected by beekeepers from active, healthy hives and possesses a variety of bioflavonoids.

Natural color variation may occur in this product.
Take 1 capsule daily.

Amount per 1 Capsule Serving
Bee Propolis 5:1 Extract Powder … 300mg
(Equivalent to 1,500 mg Bee Propolis) 


Coffee Fruit Extract- Increases BDNF

Dose: 100 mg BID Whole Coffee Cherry Extract

Coffee fruit is a separate part of the coffee plant from the coffee beans that are roasted for coffee or sometimes included in supplements as green coffee beans.

Researchers demonstrated significant improvements in cognition, and observed changes in neurofunctional brain networks after a single 100 mg dose of Whole Coffee Cherry Extract. Reference: PMC7909261

Brain Vitale

Brain Vitale™ is a unique nootropic formulation designed to optimize brain function, and to support healthy cognition, mood, and memory. It contains a comprehensive array of brain-supportive nutrients, including acetyl-l-carnitine, GPC, PS, Ginkgo biloba (standardized to contain 24% ginkgoflavonglycosides), and citicoline. Also included is a unique coffee fruit concentrate extracted from the flesh of the berry that surrounds the coffee bean and contains several distinctive compounds not found in coffee beans themselves.

Brain Vitale™ provides building blocks for the normal regeneration of brain phospholipids, crucial structural components of neuronal synapses. It is formulated to help assist with various aspects of brain health, such as cell energy production, mitochondrial support, and antioxidant protection.

As a dietary supplement, take two capsules per day with meals, or as directed by your health care practitioner.

Serving Size: 2 capsules

Amount Per Serving
Acetyl-L-Carnitine HCl … 500mg
Citicoline … 250mg
(as Cognizin®)
Glycerophosphocholine … 200mg
(from soy lecithin)
Coffee Fruit Concentrate … 100mg
(asNeuroFactor™) (Coffea arabica) (whole fruit)
Phosphatidylserine … 100mg
(from sunflower lecithin)
Ginkgo … 100mg
(Ginkgo biloba) (leaf)
[standardized to contain 24% ginkgoflavonglycosides and 6% terpene lactones]

Other Ingredients: Cellulose (capsule), silicon dioxide, dicalcium phosphate, vegetable stearate.

Does not contain gluten

Cognizin® is a registered trademark of KYOWA HAKKO BIO CO., LTD.

NeuroFactor™ products are protected by US patents 6572915, 7754263, 7807205, 7815959, 8597710, 8603563, and 8603564, issued foreign patents, and pending US and foreign applications. NeuroFactor™ is a trademark of VDF FutureCeuticals, Inc. used under license.


Pterostilbene For Neurotrophic Signaling

Research Dose: 50mg 1 capsule per day.

Pterostilbene is involved in neurotrophic signaling. Reference: PMID: 29168580

Research highlights pterostilbene, a resveratrol derivative, for its protective potential against age-related diseases like Alzheimer’s. A study using a mouse model of Alzheimer’s found a pterostilbene-rich diet significantly improved cognitive function. Pterostilbene positively influenced markers of cellular stress and inflammation, linked to upregulated PPAR alpha expression, a lipid metabolism regulator. In essence, pterostilbene may be a more potent cognition and cellular stress modulator than resveratrol, potentially due to its enhanced lipophilicity, thus aiding in preventing cognitive decline. [PMID: 21982274]

Pterostilbene 50mg — Jarrow Formulas

Pterostilbene
trans-Pterostilbene (Dimethylresveratrol)
-Sirtuin Activator*
-Calorie Restriction Mimetic*
-Supports Cardiovascular & Neurologic Health

Jarrow Formulas trans-Pterostilbene as pTeroPure  is 99% pure pterostilbene. Pterostilbene is a naturally occurring, methylated form of resveratrol and has better uptake and metabolic stability in the body. Pterostilbene is a Calorie restriction mimetic that activates the sirtuin pathway.* Emerging science suggests that pterostilbene may exhibit special benefits in brain function and health.*

Take 1 capsule per day or as directed by your qualified healthcare professional.

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving
trans-Pterostilbene ..
 50 mg (dimethylresveratrol) (pTeroPure)


Stress Management

Chronic stress could have a significant impact on cognitive decline, potentially accelerating the progression of conditions like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. When a person experiences chronic stress, their body constantly releases a stress hormone known as cortisol. Long-term elevation of cortisol levels can cause damage to the hippocampus, a region of the brain critical for memory and learning.

Also, the body’s reaction to stress includes an inflammatory response. If stress becomes a continuous factor in an individual’s life, this inflammation can become chronic, damaging brain cells and reducing the growth and function of new neurons, thereby contributing to cognitive decline. Chronic stress can also lead to unhealthy lifestyle habits, such as poor diet, less physical activity, and disrupted sleep patterns – all factors linked to a higher risk of cognitive decline and dementia. Lastly, some studies suggest that the long-term effects of stress might lead to changes in the brain’s structure and function, which could contribute to the development and acceleration of cognitive decline.

Nutritional supplements that can help reduce stress include Omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins, vitamin D, magnesium, L-theanine, Ashwagandha, Rhodiola Rosea, and probiotics.

Ashwagandha 500mg (Withania somnifera) by Nature’s Way

Life can be stressful — there’s no doubt about that! Ashwagandha can help you handle the little things each day throws your way.* It’s an adaptogen used to help your body adapt to daily stressors.* Ashwagandha has been used as an ayurvedic herbal for over 3,000 years and is native to India, the Middle East, and Africa.

Suggested Use: Take 1 capsule, two to three times daily, preferably with food or water.

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving

Ashwagandha Root Extract … 500mg (3.5% withanolides) (17.5mg)


Ashwagandha by Herb Pharm

Herb Pharm prepares their Ashwagandha Extract from the dry whole root of Withania somnifera plants which are Certified Organic. To assure optimal extraction of Ashwagandhas bioactive compounds, the root is hand-harvested at the peak of readiness, is carefully shade-dried to retain its full color and aroma, and is then thoroughly extracted.

Shake Well Before Using

Add one full squeeze of the dropper bulb to 2oz. of water or juice, two or three times per day. Best taken between meals.

Certified organic alcohol, distilled water and Certified Organic Ashwagandha extractives. non-GMO and GLUTEN-FREE

Potency: Dry herb / menstruum ratio: 1 : 4


Sleep is Critical

Good quality deep sleep plays a vital role in maintaining cognitive functions and overall brain health. When we enter the deep stages of sleep, our brain actively works to solidify memories and remove accumulated waste products that could be harmful. As we age, our natural production of melatonin—a hormone responsible for regulating sleep—decreases, which can disrupt our sleep patterns. Supplementation with melatonin can help improve sleep quality, sustain cognitive functions, and potentially slow the advancement of cognitive disorders like Alzheimer’s disease.

Sleep is also crucial for the operation of our brain’s “glymphatic” system, which helps remove accumulated toxins. An imbalance in our circadian rhythm, or sleep-wake cycle, often accompanies cognitive decline, making the implementation of good sleep hygiene practices essential. These include avoiding exposure to blue light in the evening, refraining from caffeine consumption after noon, and managing stress effectively, among other factors. In addition to these practices, certain supplements can further enhance sleep quality.

Tryptophan

Dose: 500 -1000 mg before bed

Supplemental tryptophan can improve sleep by boosting the body’s levels of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that helps regulate sleep patterns. Tryptophan is an amino acid that the body converts into serotonin. When serotonin levels are healthy, it can then be converted into melatonin, the hormone responsible for maintaining your body’s sleep-wake cycle, or circadian rhythm. This can lead to improved sleep quality and duration. For someone who doesn’t eat a lot of protein – a key dietary source of tryptophan – supplementing with tryptophan can be particularly beneficial in supporting healthy sleep. [PMID: 469515]

L-Tryptophan 500mg — Protocol for Life Balance

  • Supports Relaxation*
  • Encourages Positive Mood*
  • Promotes Restful Sleep*

L-Tryptophan is an essential amino acid; therefore, it is not synthesized by the body and must be obtained from the diet. In the brain, Tryptophan is converted into serotonin, a neurotransmitter involved in feelings of well-being, calmness, personal security, and relaxation.* It also plays a role in the regulation of appetite and synchronization of sleep patterns.* Every lot of Protocol For Life Balance® L-Tryptophan is tested to be free of Peak E and microbial contamination.

Suggested Use:
Take 1-2 capsules twice daily on an empty stomach, with final dose at bedtime, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner

Amount Per 2 Capsule Serving
L-Tryptophan … 1g
(Free-Form)(2-amino-3-indolylpropanoic acid)

Melatonin

Dose: 1-5 mg for sleep / 10-20 mg to affect the Blood-brain barrier

Clinical trials have demonstrated that supplementing with melatonin can offer several benefits. It improves sleep and helps manage sundowning—a problem where individuals become confused or agitated in the late afternoon or early evening, commonly seen in Alzheimer’s patients. Furthermore, these trials have shown that melatonin can slow the progression of cognitive decline in those with Alzheimer’s disease.

Not only does melatonin play a critical role in our sleep cycle, but it also serves as an antioxidant. It helps protect our brain cells by reducing the creation of amyloid beta, a compound that can build up in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients and cause damage. By reducing amyloid beta generation, melatonin helps shield our brain cells from the harmful effects of this compound, providing another layer of protection against cognitive decline. [PMC3742260][PMC5652010]

Natural Calm Calmful Sleep Formula

Calmful Sleep starts with Natural Calm and magnesium glycinate to soothe nerves, relax muscles. Low cellular magnesium can also lead to headaches and sleeplessness. It also contains an added blend of sleep-promoting nutrients, including l-theanine, GABA (a non-protein amino acid) and melatonin, which helps the body ease into restful sleep. Calmful Sleep is the solution to restoring a healthy magnesium level, balancing your calcium intake, and getting the sleep you need to restore natural vitality.

*For occasional sleeplessness, place powder in a glass or mug, add approximately 1 oz of hot water and stir until dissolved. Fill glass with warm water and enjoy before bedtime. Individual needs may vary. Start with a teaspoon (2g) and increase to a maximum two teaspoons (4g).

Amount Per 2 Teaspoon Serving
Magnesium … 220mg (as Magnesium Glycinate and Magnesium Carbonate)
GABA … 100mg (Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid)
Suntheanine® L-Theanine … 50mg
Melatonin … 5mg

Revitalizing Sleep Formula

It’s important to get adequate rest so your body has time to relax and rebuild. Helps you: Get to sleep faster and maintain a healthy sleep cycle, Improve the quality of restful sleep, so you wake up energized, rejuvenate your system while you sleep and have less fatigue the next day.

Suggested Use: One capsule 30-60 minutes before bedtime as an initial dose. If additional support is desired, take up to four capsules or as directed by a healthcare practitioner.

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving
Valerian Root Extract
 … 200mg (Standardized to 0.8% valerenic acids [1.6mg])
Passionflower Leaf and Flower Extract …90mg
5-HTP … 50mg (L-5-Hydroxytryptophan)(From Griffonia Bean)
L-Theanine … 50mg (Suntheanine® Brand)
Hops Flower Extract … 30mg
Lemon Balm Leaf Extract … 20mg

High Dose Melatonin and the Blood-Brain Barrier

High-dose melatonin supplementation helps maintain the integrity of the blood-brain barrier by reducing oxidative stress and inflammation. Melatonin also helps maintain the blood-brain barrier by counteracting Matrix Metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9), an enzyme that can degrade the barrier, which in turn keeps harmful substances from entering the brain. Some clinicians recommend a dose of 10-20 mg for this purpose. [PMC6932927]

Melatonin (High Dose: 20 mg)

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving
Melatonin … 20mg


The Gut-Brain Axis: Microbial Balance is Key

All disease begins in the (leaky) gut.

Alessio Fasano

Gut bacteria make bioactive molecules that affect brain function. A well-balanced microbiome is also found to produce lower levels of inflammatory and oxidative biomarkers.

The problem is our modern world. When people don’t eat enough fiber to feed the good microbes, eat excess sugar and fat that feed “bad” strains of bacteria, and take antibiotics that wipe out whole populations of beneficial organisms, we can easily get imbalances in our microbiome.

To counteract gut dysbiosis, you can do several things:

  • Make sure to eat at least 25-35 grams of fiber per day–this can assure that you have enough fiber available to feed a healthy microbiome.
  • Eat probiotic foods such as kimchi, kombucha, kefir, cultured yogurt (no sugar), and naturally fermented pickles and saurkraut from the refrigerator section of your grocery store. These foods will have orders of magnitude more probiotic bacteria than what will be available in a probiotic supplement.
  • You could consider stool testing to determine whether you have microbial imbalances. This testing can be ordered online (affiliate link) and can give you and your healthcare provider some valuable actionable information on the state of your gut microbiome. See our article: Stool Testing: Critical Microbiome Insights When You Must Fix Your Gut
  • Take a probiotic. The probiotic product listed contains most of the strains of probiotics that were found to be effective in the review cited below.

Probiotics

A review of 5 randomized trials of probiotics showed that there was an improvement in cognitive performance in patients with Alzheimer’s disease or mild cognitive impairment for the groups taking probiotics. Studies tested the effects of various combinations of probiotics including Lactobacillus acidophilus Lactobacillus fermentum, Lactobacillus caseiBifidobacterium bifidum, Bifidobacterium longum. A trial of Lactobacillus plantarum C29 alone was also found to be effective in slowing cognitive decline. They theorized that this was possibly related to lower levels of inflammatory and oxidative biomarkers.  Reference: PMCID: PMC7066922.

Probiotic-Pro12

The microbial ecosystem in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract has emerged as a “virtual organ system,” with growing recognition of its diverse significance in health maintenance.*1 GI microbiota help support and maintain healthy innate and cell-mediated immune systems.2* They also help maintain the integrity of a healthy intestinal barrier by helping detoxify the body’s natural toxins and organizing the body’s response to cellular debris.*3 In addition to helping in the maintenance of gastrointestinal health, it may also help support a healthy body weight and normal glucose metabolism already within the normal range

Suggested Use:
Take 1 capsule 3 times per day on a full stomach or as directed by a health care professional. Children can take at half adult dose if able to swallow capsules or simply open the capsule contents and sprinkle onto food or mix with juice, smoothie or other liquids.

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving:
Proprietary Probiotic Blend
 … 12 billion CFU
Lactobacillus casei … 3 billion CFU
Lactobacillus rhamnosus … 1.4 billion CFU
Lactobacillus acidophilus … 1.2 billion CFU
Lactobacillus plantarum … 1.2 billion CFU
Lactobacillus rhamnosus (bifidus) … 1.2 billion CFU
Bifidobacterium breve … 1.2 billion CFU
Bifidobacterium longum … 1.2 billion CFU
Bifidobacterium bifidum … 0.6 billion CFU
Lactobacillus lactis … 0.6 billion CFU
Lactobacillus delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus … 0.1 billion CFU
Lactobacillus helveticus … 0.1 billion CFU
Lactobacillus salivarius … 0.1 billion CFU

Less Well-Researched Supplements

The following supplements either have well-documented action against the drivers of cognitive decline or have been shown to have promising effects in animal models, but have not yet been researched in patients with cognitive decline.

RG3 Panax Ginseng

Dose: Per Pharmacy – (Prescription required)

Ginsenoside Rg3 has activities for neuroprotection and Amyloid beta clearance by changing the activity of microglia cells in the brain. Reference: PMID: 34374655

Sourcing for this product is through a compounding pharmacy with your doctor’s prescription. Ordering link | Synapsin Product Literature


Cat’s claw (Uncaria tomentosa) Antioxidant/AntiPlaque

Research Dose: 250 to 300 mg of Extract (8% to 10% carboxy alkyl esters)

Cat’s Claw can prevent these proteins from clumping together into plaques and tangles, and can even break down existing ones. They identified specific compounds in Cat’s Claw, called proanthocyanidins, as being responsible for this beneficial effect. Importantly, these compounds were found to cross the blood-brain barrier quickly, meaning they can reach the brain from the bloodstream within minutes. This finding suggests that Cat’s Claw might offer a natural and effective approach to combat Alzheimer’s disease. [PMC6365538]

Caution: Although cat’s claw has many medicinal properties, it should not be used by anyone taking anticoagulants, antihypertensive, and immunosuppressant drugs without being discussed with a physician because serious drug interactions are possible.

Cat’s Claw — Pure Encapsulations

Manufacturer’s Description: Cats Claw is a traditionally used dietary supplement that has been clinically studied to provide potential joint, cardiovascular, immune and gastrointestinal support.*

  • Traditionally used in Peru for over 2, 000 years.
  • May support joint, cardiovascular, immune and gastrointestinal function*
  • May provide antioxidant protection for gut health*
  • Made with hypoallergenic, vegan ingredients

Cats claw, also known as Uncaria tomentosa, has been used traditionally in Peru for over 2, 000 years. Alkaloids, phenols, sterols and glycosides comprise some of the naturally occurring constituents of this herb. The effects of these compounds are far-reaching and include support for joint function, gastric and intestinal health, cellular protection and immune activity. In a 52-week, randomized, double blind trial, cats claw extract promoted joint comfort in volunteers. A 4-week study also suggests that cats claw has the ability to promote joint comfort, in part by maintaining healthy prostaglandin metabolism. Other mechanisms of action that may account for these effects include protecting from oxidative stress and supporting healthy cytokine production. Studies involving cultured gastric epithelial cells suggest that cats claw may provide important antioxidant protection for gut health. Cats claw alkaloids have been specifically associated with enhancing immune system cell function, including phagocytosis and macrophage activity. Cardiovascular support properties include support for healthy vascular and platelet function. Preliminary evidence suggests that cats claw may provide protective support for healthy breast cell function. Cats claw may be contraindicated for individuals who are taking blood thinning or antihypertensive medications due to a potential synergistic effect.*

Take 1–6 capsules per day, in divided doses, with meals

Serving Size: One Vegetarian Capsule

Amount Per Serving
Cats Claw Extract … 450mg
(uncaria tomentosa)(inner vine bark)
(standardized to contain 3% oxindole alkaloids)

Mild gastrointestinal discomfort has been reported in some cases. Not to be taken by pregnant or lactating women. Consult a health professional before taking this or any other product.

Caution: Although cat’s claw has many medicinal properties, it should not be used by anyone taking anticoagulants, antihypertensive, and immunosuppressant drugs without being discussed with a physician because serious drug interactions are possible.


Luteolin

Luteolin is a flavinoid derived from quercetin and found in various herbs and vegetables that antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, as well as an ability to improve insulin sensitivity. Interestingly, the health of our gut microbiota can affect insulin resistance in both the liver and brain. The compound luteolin can cross the blood-brain barrier, meaning it can directly affect processes in the brain. By improving brain insulin resistance, luteolin might help to slow down the development of Alzheimer’s. However, it’s important to note that most of these findings are based on animal studies, and more research, specifically human clinical trials, is needed to confirm these potential benefits.

On a more technical level, it has anti-inflammatory activities by inhibiting nuclear factor kappa B (NFkB) signaling in immune cells. It’s a potent modulator of microglial activation and affects several signaling pathways, so it leads to a unique array of anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative, and neuroprotective characteristics. [PMID: 33347668]


Astaxanthin–Improved Cognitive Function in Mice

Dose: Recommended dose of Astaxanthin is 2–4 mg/day. Astaxanthin (AST) is an antioxidant that scavenges superoxide anion radicals. Reference: PMC8241491

Astaxanthin with Phospholipids 4mg– Life Extension

Astaxanthin is a versatile nutrient loaded with health benefits. It’s been shown to relieve general eye fatigue and promote a healthy inflammatory response. Astaxanthin helps optimize immune, memory, cardiovascular, metabolic, and mitochondrial health. It can even help maintain healthy cognitive function and encourage muscle strength and endurance.

This formula includes a proprietary blend of four phospholipids to increase absorption of astaxanthin several-fold.

Astaxanthin with Phospholipids Benefits:

  • Helps support a healthy inflammatory and immune response
  • Supports cognitive and memory health
  • Encourages metabolic, mitochondrial and cardiovascular health
  • Provides powerful antioxidant protection + whole-body health benefits
  • Proprietary phospholipid blend enhances astaxanthin absorption

Suggested Use: Take one (1) softgel once or twice daily, or as recommended by a healthcare practitioner.

Amount Per 1 Softgel Serving

  • Astaxanthin Phospholipid Proprietary Blend
  • Phospholipids, Natural Astaxanthin … 84mg [from extract of Haematococcus pluvialis algae (providing 4 mg astaxanthin)]

Ginger (Zingiber officinale)

Studies suggest that components of ginger, like gingerol and shogaol, might help improve memory issues related to AD. They seem to work by reducing stress on brain cells, decreasing inflammation in the brain, and blocking the cell death pathway. Some studies and clinical trials have shown promising results, but more research is needed to fully understand how ginger might work against AD and to confirm its safety and effectiveness. Some traditional medicinal practices also endorse the use of ginger for memory problems, which provides further support for these scientific findings. [PMID: 33378982]

Ginger Extract — Pure Encapsulations

Ginger Extract helps to stimulate digestive enzymes and increase bile production from the liver and gall bladder. Ginger Extract also supports cardiovascular health.*

  • Supports digestive and circulatory systems*
  • Made with hypoallergenic, vegan ingredients

The volatile oil components of ginger are responsible for its nutritional activity. Ginger helps to stimulate digestive enzymes and increases the production and secretion of bile from the liver and gall bladder. Ginger supports the cardiovascular system by maintaining healthy leukotriene and thromboxane production, supporting healthy platelet function.*

Take 1–4 capsules per day, in divided doses, between meals.

Amount Per 1 Capsule Serving
Ginger Extract … 500mg
(zingiber officinale)(root)
(standardized to contain 5% gingerols)


Alpha GPC – A Precursor to the Neurotransmitter Acetylcholine

Choline alfoscerate (CA), also known as alpha-GPC, is a compound that helps boost a brain chemical called acetylcholine, which is essential for memory and learning functions. A study sought to determine if alpha-GPC could help treat cognitive decline in people with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Over 180 days, participants in the study either took 400 mg alpha-GPC 3 times a day, or a placebo three times a day, and their cognitive abilities were tested regularly.

In the group that took alpha-GPC, there were notable improvements in their test scores compared to the group that took the placebo. This means that the alpha-GPC group experienced improvements in their cognitive symptoms, including memory, attention, and problem-solving abilities. In contrast, those in the placebo group showed no improvement or even a worsening of their cognitive function. These results suggest that supplementing with alpha-GPC may be a helpful and well-tolerated approach to improving cognitive symptoms in individuals with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease. [PMID: 24898643]

Alpha GPC 300mg — NOW Foods

  • Bioavailable Source of Choline
  • Supports Mental Acuity*

Alpha GPC is a natural physiological precursor to acetyl-choline, a neurotransmitter that is involved in memory and other cognitive functions.* Alpha GPC is more bioavailable than other forms of choline and is known to cross the blood brain barrier.  In the brain and other neural tissues, Alpha GPC becomes a constituent of cell membranes.* Clinical studies have demonstrated that supplementation with Alpha GPC can support the brain’s synthesis of acetyl-choline.* In this way, it helps to promote normal cognitive function and mental acuity.*

Amount Per 2 Capsule Serving
Alpha GPC … 600mg (L-alpha-glycerylphosphorylcholine)

Contains: Soy (Alpha GPC from soy lecithin).


Ibedenone

Research Dose: 90 mg three times per day

Ibedenone is similar to CoQ10, but is said to be much more powerful. Multiple trials of idebenone in AD were conducted in the 1990s, many demonstrating clinical benefit in memory, attention, and behavior in Alzheimer’s patients. Reference: PMC2785862

It may be available from this online source.

To Sum It Up

A vast amount of research has been done on the effectiveness of natural supplements for halting cognitive decline. We’ve brought it all together with a list of the most researched supplements. We’ve provided two convenient and economical pre-packaged alternatives designed by BrainMD. We have also put together an “all out” Brain Recovery Supplement Plan with nearly every evidence-based supplement to combat cognitive decline.

The effectiveness of a person’s efforts to reverse their brain dysfunction is highly individual. It depends on the unique drivers of cognitive issues including history of brain trauma, inflammation, insulin resistance, toxicities, and nutritional deficits. They should be combined with aerobic exercise, stress management, sleep quality and hormone optimization. The earlier a brain recovery program is started, the greater the likelihood that cognitive decline will be reversible.


This Article is Not a Substitute for Medical Advice

Dietary supplements are not designed to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The Supplement Sciences website seeks to provide comprehensive access to the most relevant supplement information along with convenient online ordering. We do not provide medical advice and cannot guarantee that every product suggested is completely without risk. Since each person is unique in their health history and medication use, it is important to discuss supplements with your personal physician. Specifically, pregnant women and individuals being treated for cancer or liver or kidney problems must consult their physician about every nutritional supplement they plan to take. People taking medications for the treatment of HIV or with a history of organ transplant must not take supplements without consulting with their physician.


About the Author

Supplement Sciences

Staff Authors at Nutriscape have been working on this article and it is still a work in progress. Please feel free to login and comment on what you see so far.

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