Prevention Is Key: Studies Show that Alzheimer’s Begins Developing Long Before Symptoms Appear
Glen Campbell, legendary singer and self-taught guitarist whose career spanned both country and pop music, passed away on August 8 after a long and public battle with Alzheimer’s disease. Perhaps best known for his chart-topping hit, “Rhinestone Cowboy,” Campbell sold more than 45 million records during his six decades in show business.
In 2011, just six years after he was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, Campbell revealed that he’d been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, a disease that is ultimately fatal—forcing him to retire from music. But rather than retreating from the spotlight right away, he released his final album, Ghost on the Canvas, and embarked on a farewell tour that year, which he allowed a documentary crew to film.
The 15-month tour and the progression of his Alzheimer’s were the focus of the 2014 documentary I’ll Be Me, which made Campbell a public face of the disease. He played even when he didn’t remember the lyrics to his own songs. He gave his last performance at the end of 2012, before spending his final years in an assisted living facility.
Currently, more than five million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s, a number that’s expected to rise as high as 16 million by the year 2050. Just this year alone, Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia cost the nation $259 billion. The only aspect of the disease more staggering than its enormous financial burden is the depth of human suffering that it causes patients and their families.
A neurodegenerative brain disorder that destroys brain cells, Alzheimer’s leads to an eventual total loss of memory, problem-solving, and in its final stages, basic bodily functions such as walking and swallowing. Sufferers also experience apathy and depression, impaired communication, disorientation, confusion, poor judgment, and behavior changes. About 60 to 80 percent of people with dementia have Alzheimer’s disease.
In 2011, the National Institute on Aging (NIA) and the Alzheimer’s Association proposed revised guidelines for diagnosing Alzheimer’s disease, explaining that it begins long before clinical symptoms emerge—in fact, the current thinking is that Alzheimer’s-related neurodegenerative changes in the brain and blood may begin 20 years before symptoms occur. Research shows that chronic inflammation and oxidative stress are at the core of all the chronic, progressive diseases of our modern era, including autoimmune disease, chronic fatigue syndrome, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and other forms of dementia. The brains of people with Alzheimer’s show inflammation as well as dying neurons.
RG3, which is an advanced formula using derivatives from Panax ginseng, is a treatment used by physicians within the BodyLogicMD network to support healthy brain function in adults while protecting sensitive neurons from damage. With the rising prevalence of neurodegenerative conditions, RG3 has been found to enhance memory and mental focus in some individuals by decreasing inflammation and oxidative stress within the brain. RG3 may also help with the induction of neurogenesis, the creation and development of neurons in the body.
While we still don’t have a cure for this painful illness that robs sufferers of their quality of life, as it did Campbell in his final years, many lifestyle choices and innovative treatment options, including bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, may decrease your risk factors. To reduce the undesirable effects of aging on cognitive function, contact a physician within the BodyLogicMD network to determine if RG3 or other therapies would be useful in a treatment plan designed to enhance your health and vitality and help you achieve a better quality of life throughout your golden years.