On Tuesday, I reported on a groundbreaking, new study conducted by U.S. researchers that nails down five real risk factors for developing cognitive decline.
But in my view, the researchers missed several key causes. Including prescription drugs and vaccines.
Research shows polypharmacy — taking multiple drugs in conjunction — can cause serious cognition problems. Especially in older patients. And even more so in those who are already in poor health and particularly susceptible to the effects of taking multiple medications.
While I was in medical training, I vividly remember seeing older patients in the hospital with severe cognitive impairment. But we found that simply stopping just one of their prescribed drugs — even for a short time — often led to a rapid return of mental clarity. And it gave them a new lease on life.
So, how and why does this type of drug-induced dementia occur?
For one, patients take more drugs than ever. In fact, when I was in medical training during the 1970s, doctors often placed older patients on up to nine different drugs. Today, that number has nearly doubled to a shocking 15 different drugs.
Secondly, as you age, your liver metabolizes drugs less efficiently. Your kidneys may excrete and eliminate drugs from the body more slowly as well. So, over time, even supposedly “safe” drugs can accumulate in your body and gradually reach toxic levels, leading to serious cognitive problems.
Knowing this common biological action, doctors should adjust prescriptions to lower doses for older patients. Or maybe even just stop prescribing so many drugs in the first place!
I wrote about how you can avoid the dangers of polypharmacy in the February issue of my monthly newsletter, Insiders’ Cures. Check out my archives for the article, titled “A ‘medicine cabinet makeover’ could save your life.” (Not yet a newsletter subscriber? All it takes is one click!)
And now we know that taking one specific drug can cause cognitive decline…
This blockbuster drug is a known dementia culprit
About 12 years ago, I first learned about the link between one specific type of drug and cognitive decline from my friend and co-author, Dr. Mones Abu-Asab. At the time, he was a scientist working in the basic biology laboratory at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Dr. Abu-Asab warned me they were finding out the new “blockbuster” drugs — cholesterol-lowering statins — were poisoning mitochondria, your cells’ energy factories.
This finding is interesting, considering how many experts believe cognitive decline is actually a manifestation of mitochondrial damage.
Plus, more recent case reports now show patients who take statin drugs experience “new-onset cognitive dysfunction.” They also experience deterioration of existing cognitive deficits. Furthermore, when the patients stop taking these drugs, the cognition returns and improves (as I alluded to earlier).
Statin drugs just never made sense to me, as we know brain and nervous tissue need cholesterol. So, why would you forcefully lower it and risk cognitive decline?
A dangerous pile-up of toxins
Of course, other drugs damage mitochondria as well. Including all kinds of psychiatric drugs and OTC pain medications, such as acetaminophen.
In fact, the list of drugs that can induce dementia-like symptoms reads like the Physician’s Desk Reference: anti-anxiety agents, antidepressants, anticonvulsants, antihistamines, anti-Parkinson’s drugs, cardiovascular drugs, corticosteroids, narcotics, and sedatives.
And now that we’re in the height of allergy season in many parts of the country, consider this…
According to a 2015 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, popular OTC allergy drugs like Benadryl and Chlor-Trimeton may increase the risk of dementia in older adults by as much as 54 percent!
(For the full report on that study, log in to my newsletter archives and revisit the 2015 Insiders’ Cures article titled, “URGENT Health Alert: Popular allergy drugs skyrocket dementia risk by more than 50%.” Simply visit the Subscribers Sign-In on www.Dr.Micozzi.com. If you’re not a subscriber, get started today by clicking here.)
And that’s not all…research now links common vaccines with cognitive decline.
Widespread vaccine ingredient linked to confusion and memory loss
Ongoing research links vaccines made with mercury, a known neurotoxin, to cognitive decline. In fact, a recent study in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease found that mercury exposure can cause many of the same changes seen in Alzheimer’s disease, including cognitive impairment, confusion, and memory loss.
Now, you may think you’ve got nothing to worry about, since manufacturers stopped adding mercury to vaccines in 2001.
Many vaccines in use today still contain mercury. Including the flu vaccine! Plus, if you’re over the age 18, chances are, you’ve received a vaccine containing mercury.
And it doesn’t stop there…
Aluminum, which is also still found in some vaccines, can cause the very same neurological problems as mercury.
I know sometimes it feels like we’re surrounded by danger — on all sides. But you can take steps to protect yourself against this looming epidemic…
Natural approaches to prevent and reverse dementia
Most doctors still don’t realize dementia is largely a condition that results from nutritional deficiencies. Fortunately, the tides are starting to change.
In fact, as I mentioned on Tuesday, researchers with the University of California, Los Angeles, found nine out of 10 people with dementia-related memory loss — who simply followed a dozen drug-free steps — had significant, sustained improvements in memory.
This research is probably the single, biggest clinical research breakthrough on nutrition and dementia. And it inspired me to develop my own Complete Alzheimer’s Cure online learning protocol. It details all the UCLA steps and much more for ultimate brain protection.
You can learn more about all my drug-free, cutting-edge strategies to prevent, treat, or even reverse dementia and Alzheimer’s disease in my Complete Alzheimer’s Cure protocol. Simply click here to learn more about this online learning tool or to enroll today!
“Does inorganic mercury play a role in Alzheimer’s disease? A systematic review and an integrated molecular mechanism,” J Alzheimers Dis. 2010;22(2):357-74