Alzheimers and Polysaccharides
Is there a link between the prevention of Alzheimer's and polysaccharides? Alzheimer's disease is a neurodegenerative disease that is found in many people over the age of 65. Cognitive deterioration and declining activities in daily living are two of the major signs of Alzheimer's disease. Many polysaccharides though have regenerative qualities and function as memory and learning enhancers. No significant evidence proving that they specifically help Alzheimer's disease has been proven. However, research is still on-going so there is still a lot of promise in the area of polysaccharides being able to reverse some of the effects of Alzheimer's disease.
The strongest evidence at this point is anecdotal. If you're considering taking polysaccharides because there is a history of Alzheimer's disease in your family you should start by understanding what glyconutrients are and how they can be obtained for use by your body. The main claims in favor of adding polysaccharide supplements to the body seem to be that they aid in reducing inflammation, resisting infection by boosting the immune system, and (of most interest in regards to Alzheimer's) in enhancing memory.
Polysaccharides and Memory Enhancement
The interest in the benefits of taking
Polysaccharides to stave off the onset of Alzheimer's has to do with one essential polysaccharide. High levels of the polysaccharide N - acetylneuraminic acid has been found to have a profound effect in brain development and learning. It can be found in breast milk and whey protein. While maybe as important for babies as for those with Alzheimer's disease, N - acetylneuraminic acid helps the brain function at a higher level and may play an important role in the research of how polysaccharides affect Alzheimer's disease.
Medical research has shown that long term use of non-steroid anti-inflammatory agents may help prevent Alzheimer's disease from forming in those over 65. This is particularly important information because many of the polysaccharides act as anti-inflammatory agents, have tissue regenerative qualities, and advance the healing process. If indeed anti-inflammatory agents do aid in the prevention of Alzheimer's disease, polysaccharides could certainly help prevent it as well.
Another polysaccharide (fucose) is a particularly powerful anti-inflammatory agent when paired with mannose. Mannose has the special quality of helping tissue regenerate and heal at a faster rate; making it particularly important to those with rheumatoid arthritis. However, when paired with fucose, mannose becomes a super machine often helping to eliminate any inflammation completely and repair any tissue damage.
Glucose is another polysaccharide that is essential to memory enhancement. The downside to glucose though, is the fact that too much can raise insulin levels and result in obesity or diabetes. With that being said, studies have shown that glucose is vital to brain function and is often disturbed in those with depression, anorexia, and bulimia. Alzheimer's disease patients have also registered much lower glucose levels than those with other forms of brain malfunction. Preliminary research has shown that a supplement of 75 grams of glucose has significantly enhanced performance on memory tests. Again, be careful because glucose leaves the body fast resulting in a “crash” of energy that leaves the body feeling drained. If you are concerned about these issues, talk to your doctor when starting any new health regiment.
Overall, many Polysaccharides are found to have memory enhancing qualities. While research into the exact affects are still in progress, the future link between Alzheimer's and polysaccharides looks promising.