There is No Evidence that Current Strategies Prevent Alzheimer’s

In a recent article published on the Wall Street Jurnal online, by Shirley Wang (April 28, 2010), we learn that after a panel discussion led by specialists at the National Institute of Health (NIH), there are not clinical or other interventions that had proven effective in the prevention of Alzheimer’s disease. They concluded “…There’s not enough evidence to suggest that medicines or dietary supplements prevent Alzheimer’s disease or cognitive decline, an independent committee of experts convened by the National Institutes of Health concluded today.

The three-day meeting of 15 experts took a critical look at the state of science surrounding the memory-robbing disease, which is now the sixth-leading cause of death in the U.S. The main conclusion: there’s not enough good research out there to show that any intervention prevents the disease. Read the panel’s draft statement here.

Some factors that appear to be related to decreased risk of Alzheimer’s include “cognitive engagement” like training people in reasoning and memory, walking and a Mediterranean diet. But there’s no consistent evidence that multivitamins, gingko biloba or other supplements can do anything to stave off the disease.

The experts didn’t find evidence that Alzheimer’s drugs like Pfizer and Esai’s Aricept and Forest’s Namenda, approved to treat memory loss and other symptoms of the disease, are also effective in slowing or preventing dementia. Read More

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