Can Coconut Oil Reverse Alzheimer’s Disease?

As longtime readers may know, I have a relative that’s a holistic nutritionist, and she sometimes touts the supposed benefits of certain foods to members of our family. One of these is coconut oil, which, so we’ve been told, is one of the healthiest things we can eat.

Now I try to stay out of these conversations unless asked directly what I think. But some time ago my mother wanted my opinion on what our relative was saying, and I told her that I was skeptical since coconut oil is very high in saturated fats, but admitted I hadn’t really looked closely at it. Fast forward a year or so and Mom sends me this for a followup opinion:

Where, oh where to begin? It’s pretty much a textbook case of the credulous reporting we frequently see with alt-med, and my initial inclination was to simply write “bollocks” in the reply email and have done with it. But instead, I decided that – since I was asked directly for my opinion — it might be of more value to explain the things about this video that made me skeptical, while also speaking directly to what the research says. Having done so (and received positive feedback from Mom for it), I thought it might also be worth sharing with our readers here.

Warning Sign #1: Who’s Selling What To Whom?

Mary Newport, the woman they spend Act 1 of the story interviewing, experimented on her husband. Let’s forget the ethics of this for a moment — we’ll give her the benefit of the doubt and assume she’s a loving wife using her medical training genuinely to try to help her husband. Let’s instead focus on her ostensibly positive results.

Normally, when researchers see something promising, they try to replicate and improve the quality of their findings. They add rigorous controls to avoid bias, and increase the sample size to reduce the impact of randomness on the results and ensure that they’re significant. In short, they try to validate that the effect they’re seeing is not a fluke, and is actually related to the putative cause.

But Mary Newport didn’t do any of this. Instead, she wrote a book. Her “evidence” is in the letters that those who purchased her book sent her. Which are merely more uncontrolled, unscientific anecdotes no more valuable than the first.

Warning Sign #2: That Slippery Elipsis…

But hold on – Act 2 of the story focuses on researchers in the UK doing just this kind of research, doesn’t it? Well, not quite -– they’re not researching coconut oil at all, but rather a ketone ester that’s 10x more powerful. The narrator (not the researchers) suggest that coconut oil is an acceptable substitute until this ester is commercially available, but why should we assume a lower-powered version will work? That’s a pretty big jump. In my email to Mom, I asked her whether she thought 1/10th of her prescription dosage would work for her.

Warning Sign #3 – Special Pleading

The researchers go on to admit that their findings are preliminary, and that what they really need is money for research. In doing so, they wheel out the tired trope about there being no money for research in natural remedies because no one can profit from it.

This is pure nonsense. As I showed in an article last year, natural health products are an $85B industry that can certainly afford to fund research. More to the point, if there were a promising cure for Alzheimer’s, government research agencies facing an aging population and rising healthcare costs would be lining up to fund it. In the US alone, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) has spent $1.4B of public money researching natural health products, and continues to do so despite not really finding much of value so far.

Warning Sign #4 – Bucking the Consensus

Coconut oil is almost entirely saturated fat – one ounce has 24g of sat fat, or 120% of your RDA. Now it’s true, as they suggest, that saturated fat isn’t as bad for you as a trans fat, but it’s also a false dichotomy. Saturated fats raise LDL (bad cholesterol). It seems extremely unlikely that coconut oil is the magic oil that defies the behavior of every other saturated fat. Not impossible mind you, but I’d want to see evidence as strong as the consensus view that saturated fats are bad for you before accepting the claim, and I’m not seeing that laid out in the piece.

Warning Sign #5 – The Wonder Food

This is the point that Mom most responded to. Just look at the list of things coconut oil is also allegedly good for in addition to Alzheimer’s: Parkinson’s, ALS, Epilepsy, Dementia, Schizophrenia, Autism, Herpes and HIV. If this were true, they’d be clearing out Orange County to plant coconut groves.

That is if THEY weren’t in the pocket of Big Pharma, which just wants to keep us sick. Wake up Sheeple!

So my skeptical bells are ringing, but…

What about the evidence? I’d answer that, if only I could find any. I did a Pubmed search on the researcher in Act 2 of the story, and she’s published only one study on the effects of esters on the brain…of rats, not humans.

Then I searched for research connecting coconut oil and Alzheimer’s, and got zero results.

So I checked NCCAM for any articles related to coconut oil and found one reference, which found no association between cognitive decline and saturated fats.

Finally, I checked the skeptical search engine to see if any science bloggers had taken a look at the evidence. Orac at Respectful Insolence refers to making similar attempts to find any evidence on this topic, equally unsuccessfully. In another article, Steve Novella has the same experience over at his Neurologica blog. At least it’s not just me.

So what do we take away from all this? That coconut oil is simply the latest health fad to feature that lethal combination of overblown claims and extremely thin science. That there’s no magic food, despite the marketing hype to the contrary. That our best defense is our ability to pick up on the warning signs that something’s amiss, which hopefully prods us to look at the actual evidence or lack thereof. And that every once in a while, skeptics can actually help someone spot those warning signs and question the bogus claims — even if that someone is only their Mom.

Image courtesy of TigerPuppala via Flickr under Creative Commons.

93 Responses to “Can Coconut Oil Reverse Alzheimer’s Disease?”

  1. Blondin says:

    How ’bout if you put the lime in the coconut (and shake it all up)?

  2. Stan says:

    Your blog provides a critical and honest look at Coconut oil…your blog provides a great service…the disease Alzheimer’s is one of the most horrible diseases to afflict mankind…both my wife and mother died of this disease…no one who has ever traveled into the shadows of this disesse have ever returned…people are too eager to grab onto any claim that comes along…watching the victim in the CBN video tells you that this is a person in deep Alzheimer’s and not one coming out of it!

  3. Dani says:

    So my question then to you is – where is the harm? Its not like this is a drug of any sort – this is a natural fruit that tastes good and MAY possibly do us some good. My father is beginning stages and to be honest is a tbsp of this instead of butter MIGHT make the disease slow down I then need to ask again, where is the harm??

    • Art Tricque says:

      How do you know it won’t cause harm? How do you know that a tablespoon of butter doesn’t do more good or less harm? Butter is all “natural” too (your word, as it makes no difference to benefit or harm).

  4. Mary Newport MD says:

    Those of us dealing with a family member with Alzheimer’s will lose them while we wait for the years it will take to fund and study coconut oil. It is a food. 70% of the saturated fats are the medium chain triglycerides that the liver converts to ketones, an alternative fuel for the brain. They behave very differently than the longer chain saturated fats. These have been studied in clinical trials for Alzheimer’s and larger trials are ongoing (Axona, a medical food containing MCT oil). You might want to actually study the science before you trash it. Anyone who takes biochemistry learns the fundamentals of how ketones serve as an alternative fuel during starvation and how the liver converts MCT oil to ketones. Our loved ones brains are dying; what do they ahve to lose by trying this?

    • Art Tricque says:

      Except that the published evidence (as confirmed by a Pubmed search) is extremely limited, and the Axona research is not about coconut oil, but rather a constituent component, and that whether or not ketones may serve as an energy source may have no effect on the progression of the underlying illness.

      A few other points:
      * Would you be comfortable with a gerontological neurosurgeon treating an infant? Why are you, a paediatrician, even more one who seems to be at a stage in their career filled with heading departments and administrative tasks, concerned so directly with treating your husband, clearly not a child?
      *Would you feel comfortable applying a treatment with such flimsy scientific evidence to an infant or child in your care, or recommending such a treatment to others?

  5. Kris says:

    My father is suffering from alzheimers and parkinsons diseases, I am an RN and have been persuing all the medical avenues (neurologist, pharmacology, mental health etc.) and though I try to be open minded about homepathic treatments I am always skeptical….however, my 85 year old father really had nothing to lose at this point trying the coconut oil. My observation after 3 weeks was that Dad went from a zombie like state, sitting all day in his chair and only answering questions briefly when asked…(he did not remember how to open a drawer)to greeting me when I came in, announcing “It’s not even Saturday, did you just come from work?” HE KNEW THE DAY! and that was a BIG change…since then it just keeps getting better, he walks around the house, talks about the weather or what is on TV. I really don’t care about the research, fads, who’s profitting…I have benefitted…my Dad is back!!!

    • Art Tricque says:

      If you are on RN trying “…to be open minded about homepathic treatments”, then the credibility of this convenient anecdote is zero. You father has nothing to lose but his cardiovascular health, and you nothing but your money, money that instead could be donated to serious research about Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

      • Larry says:

        It is absolutely absurd to suggest that injestion of several tablespoons of coconut oil a day would cause an 85 year old man to lose is cardiovascular health. Do you have any evidence of this, studies double blined and peer reviewed? Coconut based nutrition is provided in hospitals for those who can’t digest well because of its unique properties. Additionally, saturated fats increase HDL, of which a low level is the only proven cholesterol level risk factor in heart disease.

        No it is not identical to a $100 a day prescription.
        Does that prove it is worthless? Have you heard the story of Lorenzo’s oil?
        http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/3907559.stm

      • Latifa Ring says:

        You are an insensitive person Art, I watched a loved one die of this disease. She had a very healthy heart till the day she died. Her mind was destroyed slowly and terribly and as far as I could tell the Aricept made it worse not better.

        I would have gladly given her coconut oil.

        I would rather die of a heart attack than from alzheimer’s any day.

      • Art Tricque says:

        Commenter Latifa Ring says:

        1. “You are an insensitive person Art, I watched a loved one die of this disease.” So I have Latifa. It is not insensitive to point out how (perhaps well-meaning) lay people espouse treatments or potions that have no proven effect, and may even hasten the disease. It is inexcusable for medical or scientific professionals to espouse them.

        2. “I would rather die of a heart attack than from alzheimer’s any day.” This is a moral judgement you are free to make for yourself, and those under your care. It is not a scientific or medical judgement one.

      • Tamra says:

        One glaring error on most everyone’s part in their comments is grouping coconut oil as a ‘homeopathic’ remedy. Coconut oil is a food, a God given natural food and not a homeopathic remedy. it is a natural health remedy. Homeopathy is completely different. Another point to make is that you will never regain health back when using pharama drugs. In order for drugs to work in the body’s system they have to poison crucial enzymes and block receptors. Although this may quell symptoms, over time, you cannot fool the body forever and you get into trouble. Negative side effects start up and because the real cause was never addressed, health never returns.

    • mike says:

      we have seen medical science and big pharma’s for years only attempting to treat symptoms and not cure the source–chronic diseases like diabetes,high blood pressure,obesity,autoimmune diseases,cancer,etc–they say they cannot be cured–but people changing their diet/lifestyle are healing these diseases daily–processed foods and animals and by products are killing the world–we call it SAD(standard american diet)–actually Alzheimer’s is considered diabetes of the brain–glucose cannot get to do it’s job–coconut fat can get in where glucose can not–there really is no excuse for being stupid any more–we have the web and where MD’s only have a couple of hours of nutrition training and a lot of medicine training–do you really want to place your health and life in the hands of these people—i could go on and on about the atrocities that are being committed and allowed by those we place our trust in including the FDA–get smart-and stop digging your grave with your teeth

      • Scott Gavura says:

        mike:

        [citation required]

      • mike says:

        i wanted to add a personal experience–i have been vegetarian and vegan for 40 years-my wife about the same but we ate a lot of processed foods and not so much raw–vegan junkies–my wife had gotten to 238lbs–had high blood pressure,diabetes,neuropathy,arthritis(walked with a cane)–never knowing if when came home if she would be alive–she also had a heart condition–she came across a story about Bill Clinton and his heart problems–stayed up all night reading various “claims” in the Raw food area–in the morning she told me that she was going 100% raw and she did–of course i was the typical skeptic–3 days after starting her blood pressure readings came down to normal(217/157) to 97/59–nothing meds had done even a little–threw away the HBP meds–22 days after going raw diabetes readings went from 455 down to low 70′s–again meds never did anything –threw those meds out–lost weight down to 117lbs in 10 months where she has plateaued at 5ft 4 in–no cane to walk or any other problems–looks and acts 30 years younger–needless to say my skepticism is gone and raw myself–we have a Facebook page –Raw and Delicious Lifestyle–that has about 2000 people from over 30 countries that either have been cured(personal testimonies) or are in the process of healing–even cured from that dreaded cancer–we need to take back our health

      • Art Tricque says:

        Do you expect anyone to believe that health professionals *never* recommend that their patients improve their diets and reduce their weight as a way to improve health? How many times did they tell your spouse? Oh yes, never I’m sure…

      • al kimeea says:

        Robin Gibb – vegan, non smoker and non drinker – RIP @ 62. Disco is deadly I always said back in the day, but that was more aboot the 4X premium on the going rate for a brewski. Who knew?

        hmm, let’s see medical advice from people with a lot of medicine training vs mike of the intertubes whose training appears to be in fallacies and hyperbole

        The www is no prophylactic for ignorance – moxi-bustion, really? – or stupidity – see Tosh.0

        Considering that MDs cured my chronic hepatitis, I’m pretty sure they’ll get to most of the others with more research or we could buy F35s

    • Laura says:

      This is the same experience I am seeing with my mom! Coconut oil is a food not a drug so I don’t think there is any harm in giving it a go. What do these patients have to lose? I doubt the fat is going to hurt them. Alzheimer’s is already doing their bodies the harm.

      • Art Tricque says:

        Without proper scientific research, one has no way of knowing that coconut oil will do no harm or even help. Perhaps it hastens the disease?

  6. Mike Allen says:

    weight is a symptom of an unhealthy body–diabetes,etc caused by a SAD–it would depend on what you mean by improving her nutrition–so no would be my answer–when your body gets healthy the weight comes off and stays off–no fad diet here–MD’s have very little education in nutrition as i stated before and the majority of education is which medicine to give for which symptom–these same doctors will tell you to us diet products with aspartame,etc–must admit–i do not value their recommendations–when you see chronic disease being reversed by a food lifestyle and persist on meds that do more damage to the body and it’s functions–well you have your answer

  7. Derrell says:

    My Dad is in the late stages of Alzheimer’s. We started giving him 1 Tsp. of Turmeric in the morning starting Mar.21,2012.Before we started giving him turmeric he would sleep allot,not really responsive,didn’t move, had to be supported with pillows in a wheel chair. Two weeks after we started with Turmeric he was awake for long periods of time,more alert and talking a bit,no longer needs pillows to support him in the wheel chair and can even walk with some assistance. He has also gained 2 lbs from 92 and is still gaining weight and strength. We have now started giving him 1 tsp of Organic virgin coconut oil which we will increase as time goes on. My Dad was slowly dying, there was nothing to lose from trying this at this point. My Dad is now doing better everyday there’s an improvement more then we saw from any drug we’ve tried in the early stages. With Alzheimer’s there is nothing to lose by trying Virgin organic coconut oil and or turmeric, you know what the outcome is by trying nothing. My Dad had Alzheimer’s for more then 13 years if only we knew about this sooner.

  8. Jason says:

    There seems to be a common thread which exists in many of the comments posted. The question of what have we got to lose, stories of positive personal experiences and finally a general negative attitude towards established medical fields like doctors, regulatory bodies and private companies.

    First …. hope and comfort can be a blessing in situations which force us to confront unpleasant facts. Witnessing disease, suffering and the death of those close to us is a very real and difficult tragedy. At these times when we wish for, desire and am emotionally invested we might find it difficult to truly ask ourselves if what we desire or wish for is so strong as to override our rationality. I personally think it is extremely easy to understand why we all tend to over estimate the odds in our favour when we contemplate upon something we would like while we tend to under estimate the odds when we contemplate a potentially harmful situation. Does this ever happen to us when we introduce the suffering of a loved one? Note, this in no way is an opinion on whether or not alternative treatment ‘A’ or ‘B’ was effective or produced the miracle results sometimes attributed to it. No, this is only meant to highlight that those situations where we are emotionally invested and potentially biased we might best be served by being fully aware of this fact, accepting how easily fooled we might be and seek confirmation beyond our typical satisfaction before throwing our lot in with certainty of one sort or another.

    As for what have we got to lose …. I don’t know, sounds almost like an appeal to emotion, but for sure, what have you got to lose? Concerning those who mentioned that they had prayed for a positive recovery, Daniel Dennett asks in his wonderful essay Thank Goodness …. “Did you also sacrifice a goat?” When faced with tragedy and poor odds we may be willing to venture outside of what is standard operating procedure and assume more risk. This, I am sure, has been the catalyst for many advances. In fact, if any example of alternative medicine does begin to accumulate evidence, strong, rigorously supported evidence, in its favour …. that particular treatment will no longer be labelled as ‘alternative’ but merely medicine. Another concern is the lessening of an individuals rationalism in favour of more wishful thinking in their struggles. I find it hard not to feel sympathy with those who finds themselves in such a place that they are willing to ask … what have I got to lose? Yet another concern centres around those cases where treatments which have been shown to be effective or useful are either ignored or corrupted due to this line of thought. And finally, the question must be raised … how does one decide what unproven treatment is worthy of trying? Animal sacrifice? Blood letting? Pray? We obviously exercise some rationality. Does our rationality become co-opted in favour of our wish fulfillment and is this a detachment from reality in pursuit of comfort and self serving needs?

    Finally, negative attitudes towards the medical industry and regulatory bodies. I have found many who have navigated the area of health services or have borne witness to a loved one do so often have emotionally triggered responses. I trust the system of science, I trust the method of progress but would not automatically trust an individual within that system. I think Professor Dennett offers a good insight into this line of thought in the previous essay I mentioned. Are there problems with current medical systems and regulatory bodies …. without question. Yet I tend to think this is more a question about actual outcomes versus perceived intentions and thus, might be best addressed in a political nature. Institutions like the FDA, government health services, pharma companies and how they operate for me is more a moral, economic and political issue then otherwise. The intentions of any of these must be weighed against the actual outcome of their actions as I am convinced the motives of the majority found within these type of examples are sincere.

    Long comment, I do recognize that. The desire to feel we are helping and not helpless, that there is hope in the face of tremendous suffering and that a miracle could exist is no different then the wish fulfilling, cold comforting and completely empty promises of life after death. What harm is it doing …. it robs the individual of living within reality and willfully deluding themselves for purely selfish reasons … which might be understandable but should not be ignored. Be honest about the motives, live within reality and again I mention none of this detracts from the possibility that alternative treatment ‘X’ actually did do something wonderful. But accept that personal stories, anecdotes and opinions are just that …. not evidence.

  9. Derrell says:

    @Jason
    My Dad has had Alzheimer’s for the past 13 years, he is now in the late stages and suffered a seizure April 2011. The care home his is in sent him to the hospital for treatment. The hospital did several test and came back and said he had Pneumonia then 6 hours later said he did not have Pneumonia he had a lung infection. After being in the hospital for 2 day’s they said he was unable to swallow food and recommended palliative care as he would no longer be able to swallow and it’s non reversible this professional doctor has seen it many times and is 100% sure this in non reversible. He was taken back to the care home and with no food and little liquid for 5 days they put him on morphine until he passed away. The night nurse gave him Morphine at 4:00am and again at 8:00am and he was awake and she noticed he wasn’t in pain so she called the care home doctor and said he was not in pain the doctor instructed her to stop the morphine. My Mom went up at 12:00pm that day and tried to feed him and he ate and was able to swallow. Long story short my Dad is still with us today and we started giving him Turmeric and Coconut oil and he’s getting better and stronger everyday. Your medical science would have had this man DEAD! How can i have faith in our medical system? Coconut oil and Turmeric are everyday foods. Everyday foods never killed anyone as far as i know. Push the medical science down someone else’s throat.If that was me in that care home i would want my family to try anything possible to make me better not kill me. Jason you go 5 days with no food and little liquid and see how you fair. Maybe medical science should be looking into this Turmeric and Coconut oil or is the problem they can’t make it into a drug and sell it for MILLIONS of Dollars.

    • Jason says:

      You absolutely right though, to recognize that the millions of people in the medical field and those that came before them are only in it to get rich, have no other motives and are all engaged in a conspiracy which crosses international borders and time to keep out that which may help those in need. All the nurses, researchers, assistants, hobbyists, doctors, all those that devote(d) their entire lives to the pursuit to making our lives more tolerable, livable, all those that work and worked in quiet turmoil spending thankless hours upon hours upon hours doing the hard often unrecognized work … yes, they all have questionable motives.

      People ask … what harm does this do. Besides close mindedness and bigotry you mean?

      • Art Tricque says:

        I echo commenter Jason: Saying “Maybe medical science should be looking into this Turmeric and Coconut oil or is the problem they can’t make it into a drug and sell it for MILLIONS of Dollars” is repugnant.

    • Art Tricque says:

      “If that was me in that care home i [sic] would want my family to try anything possible to make me better not kill me.” How do you know you won’t kill someone with your treatments that are well-meaning but totally unproven? How do you you know that using someone’s recommended daily allowance of fats with a high-saturated fat like coconut oil instead of olive oil or butter isn’t a better approach? How do you know you’re not killing the patient faster with coconut oil than with some other treatment? How do you know one shouldn’t be using thyme, or myrtle, or salt, or yogurt?

      “Coconut oil and Turmeric are everyday foods. Everyday foods never killed anyone as far as i [sic] know.” Have you really thought this statement through? Foods can and do people every days, from contamination to their inherently unhealthy or nutritious mature

      I am glad your father is still alive. Forgive me for observing that the comment “…he’s getting better and stronger everyday…” is most likely the understandable human desire for wishful thinking.

      • Derrell says:

        As far as the wishful thinking is concerned with my Dad’s health and getting better. The care aids and Nurses in the Care Home are noticing improvements in my Dad daily. They are not aware of the Coconut oil and Turmeric we are giving me Dad. We did not inform them for the simple reason we wanted to make sure IT WAS NOT JUST WISHFUL THINKING IF WE THOUGHT THERE WAS AN IMPROVEMENT. I guess it’s not just wishful thinking if staff are noticing as well. I work with an a person from India who has an 80 year old Mother who also takes Turmeric Daily and has been for most of her life. She does not have Diabetes,Alzheimer’s,high blood pressure or even arthritis. She is not on any medication. I guess the Turmeric can’t be that much of a health hazard. I don’t know anyone personally that has used Coconut oil daily so i can’t really comment on here except for what I’ve read. My Dad is 73 and yes we could be killing him faster by giving him the coconut oil but we were willing to take that risk as he was slowly dying with us doing nothing but watching. As far as using thyme,myrtle,salt,butter, or olive oil for treatment? I have read many websites where people have used Coconut oil and Turmeric for treating loved one’s with positive results and not one of them mentioned anything but Coconut oil and or turmeric. End result is people other then ourselves are noticing an improvement in my dad daily so we must be doing something right other then watching him slowly die. My Dad watched his Mom die from the this terrible disease called Alzheimer’s and he said his only hope is he has a massive heart attack.

      • Jason says:

        Derrell,

        Anecdotal evidence is not very powerful, to which I am sure you would agree with in an number of variety of examples. Besides, hardly anyone is privy to the kind of information in any particular case to speak with any authority on the matter, to which I might suggest you might belong to as well. I highly doubt you can be trusted to be a reputable an unbiased observer and recorder of events and information relevant to the details and hypothesis you offer.

        Also … AN ALL CAPS STATEMENT DOES NOT GIVE IT ANYMORE CREDIBILITY.

        Remember, I am not aiming to make an opinion on the actual use of coconut oil, though I do have an opinion, I am merely trying to point out your level of what you consider as evidence to support your apparent pre-conceived beliefs is flimsy at best, wishfully perhaps and willfully ignorant at worst.

        In a previous comment you question the motives of the millions who work in medical services to which I find extremely narrow and devastatingly ignorant but they offer the statement …. “I have read many websites where people have used Coconut oil and Turmeric for treating loved one’s with positive results…”

        Could it be at all possible … even slightly possible, that a percentage of these websites might actually engage in the motives you ascribe to the entire medical service industry? Could any of these ‘websites’ be questionable? Besides, a volume of anecdotal evidence remains just that …. anecdotal.

        Finally, a comment regarding your decision to keep those whom are working with your relative in the dark about alternative treatment decisions. This is exactly one concern I had mentioned regarding what harm could it do … though it is most likely not the case … what if the treatment they are offering is somehow corrupted or endangered?

      • Derrell says:

        My Dad is not receiving any medical (Drug) treatment at this time from this care home at anytime so there is no way any treatment they are providing can be corrupted or endangered. He was previously on Aricept but his doctor recommended taking him off as he did not see any benefit from it that was last March 2011. The point of the caps was to make it clear that it is not just wishful thinking on our part that my Dad is indeed improving but it’s also being witnessed by other’s that are not family.

  10. Derrell says:

    Word will get out real soon that there is some hope out there with the use of Coconut oil and Turmeric. I put turmeric spice in powder form on my food everyday now for prevention. The drugs they have out there right now has NOT stopped Alzheimer’s in it’s tracks for ANYONE! but we have heard quite a few people say Coconut oil has stopped the progression and even reversed it and i have not read of a single person that has died from ingesting coconut oil or turmeric. If anyone say’s it causes heart attacks i want to see the proof in that.

    • Jason says:

      Derrell …. the thrust of a few points I was trying to make you seem to agree with. We should always try to base our reasoning on that which is sound, that which we have proof and evidence for as opposed to notions like faith. You appear to agree with this notion when you mention your skeptical nature on those that might make the claim that ingredient x may lead to condition y and ask where their evidence is. Yet your casual dismissal of the scientific method which is built upon such principles and composed of literally millions of people is baffling. Are there examples where an individual, a team of people or even practices, concepts and theories may be illustrated to be questionable, dubious or down right wrong? Without a doubt, yet the scientific method is so powerful precisely because it thrives and advances on its self correcting properties. Having faith or an allegation to the actors within or concepts devised thereof I would suggest is ill advised. Yet never has a device been known that would rival the net benefits to all of humanity as the scientific method. Finally, anecdotal reflections may be close to your experiences and thus seem to be powerful, anecdotal evidence suffers from many shortcomings ( which again, is not to say the conclusion is automatically wrong, just not supported ). The least of which is that hardly anyone is in a position that can speak with any confidence on the matter. Please consider this example, in lieu of your inquiry to have proof of heart attacks associated with ingesting say coconut oil. Would you accept my account that relative x died from a heart attack which was brought about by ingesting coconut oil?

      If there are any medicinal benefits associated with such things as turmeric or coconut oil it will only be through the application of the scientific method that will ‘get the word out.’

    • Art Tricque says:

      “If anyone say’s it causes heart attacks i want to see the proof in that.” With heavy irony, I think those that have no substantial proof to back up their arguments do not get to ask for the same proof of others. However, if commenter Derrell seriously is not aware that saturated fats are problematic for health and heart disease, well…

      • Derrell says:

        Philippine Journal
        Of
        CARDIOLOGY
        July-September 2003, Volume 31 Number 3:97-104
        COCONUT OIL: Atherogenic or Not?
        (What therefore causes Atherosclerosis?)
        Conrado S. Dayrit, MD, FPCC, FPCP, FACC***
        SUMMARY According to the universally accepted Lipid-Heart Theory, high saturated fats cause
        hypercholesterolemia and coronary heart disease. Coronary morbidity and mortality are
        said to be highest in the countries and peoples consuming the highest amounts of saturated
        fats. Coconut oil, with its saturated medium chain fats, has been especially condemned for
        this reason. The true facts are just the opposite. The countries consuming the highest
        amounts of coconut oil – the Polynesians, Indonesians, Sri Lankans, Indians, Filipinos –
        have not only low serum cholesterol but also low coronary heart disease rates – morbidity
        and mortality.
        The reason why coconut oil cannot be atherogenic is basic. Coco oil consists
        predominantly of 65% medium chain fatty acids (MCFA) and MCFAs are metabolized
        rapidly in the liver to energy and do not participate in the biosynthesis and transport of
        cholesterol. Coconut oil, in fact, tends to raise the HDL and lower the LDL:HDL ratio.
        Coco oil is not deposited in adipose tissues and therefore does not lead to obesity. It is
        primarily an energy supplier and as fast a supplier of energy as sugar. MCFAs therefore
        differ in their metabolism from all the long chain fatty acids, whether saturated or
        unsaturated.
        The pathogenesis of atherosclerosis has recently taken a complete paradigm shift – from a
        simple deposition of cholesterol and cholesterol esters to an inflammatory condition where
        numerous genetically dependent factors – dyslipoproteinemias, dysfunctions of endothelial
        and other cells leading to invasions of the subendothelial region by macrophages, smooth
        muscle cells, leukocytes and T cells – all interplay in a scenario still not fully understood.
        This will be discussed at length and whatever role fat deposition plays appears late in
        atherogenesis and secondary to oxidation process and the overriding role of the
        dysfunctional endothelium. Coconut oil has no role at all to play in this highly complex
        and still ill understood process.

      • Tamra says:

        Art darling, are you a drug sales rep by any chance? or perhaps a biochemist working for big Pharma? Based on your comments, that just drips off you. Saturated fats, ah yes. Well now, let’s understand that the fat in Coconut oil is not the same fat that is so bad for you. It is comprised of medium fatty chains that translates into a good fat. it also has a higher heat resistance and will not go rancid like other oils. Tumeric has a natural anti inflammatory effect on the system. Inflammation is a precursor to almost all diseases. Let me interest you and Jason in a book written by 2 time award wining biochemist Shane Ellierson called “Natural over the Counter Cures” Shane is known as “The People’s Chemist” and previously designed and created drugs for big Pharma. But, he saw the light as thousands of other M.D.’s and researcher’s have. By the way, cholesterol is not the enemy once touted, rather it is the lack of nitrous oxide in the blood. This discovery has won one of only four Nobel Prizes awarded to medicine. Enjoy the book!

      • Michael says:

        Actually, recent evidence suggests contrary to what you believe is that saturated fat is most likely better for your health than most processed seed oils that is put in just all processed foods. In a diet low on grains, starches and other refined carbohydrates, most peoples health markers – BP, TG, LDL/HDL ratios, LDL-P and HDL-P all improve significantly.

        Your body readily converts coconut oil into ketones which can be used by the brain and is especially useful to alleviate symptoms of poor glucose metabolism that is seen in Alzheimers and some other diseases of the brain. In recent studies Alzeheimers is starting to be referred to as Type 3 diabetes.

  11. Derrell says:

    Philippine Journal
    Of
    CARDIOLOGY
    July-September 2003, Volume 31 Number 3:97-104
    COCONUT OIL: Atherogenic or Not?
    (What therefore causes Atherosclerosis?)
    Conrado S. Dayrit, MD, FPCC, FPCP, FACC***
    SUMMARY According to the universally accepted Lipid-Heart Theory, high saturated fats cause
    hypercholesterolemia and coronary heart disease. Coronary morbidity and mortality are
    said to be highest in the countries and peoples consuming the highest amounts of saturated
    fats. Coconut oil, with its saturated medium chain fats, has been especially condemned for
    this reason. The true facts are just the opposite. The countries consuming the highest
    amounts of coconut oil – the Polynesians, Indonesians, Sri Lankans, Indians, Filipinos –
    have not only low serum cholesterol but also low coronary heart disease rates – morbidity
    and mortality.
    The reason why coconut oil cannot be atherogenic is basic. Coco oil consists
    predominantly of 65% medium chain fatty acids (MCFA) and MCFAs are metabolized
    rapidly in the liver to energy and do not participate in the biosynthesis and transport of
    cholesterol. Coconut oil, in fact, tends to raise the HDL and lower the LDL:HDL ratio.
    Coco oil is not deposited in adipose tissues and therefore does not lead to obesity. It is
    primarily an energy supplier and as fast a supplier of energy as sugar. MCFAs therefore
    differ in their metabolism from all the long chain fatty acids, whether saturated or
    unsaturated.
    The pathogenesis of atherosclerosis has recently taken a complete paradigm shift – from a
    simple deposition of cholesterol and cholesterol esters to an inflammatory condition where
    numerous genetically dependent factors – dyslipoproteinemias, dysfunctions of endothelial
    and other cells leading to invasions of the subendothelial region by macrophages, smooth
    muscle cells, leukocytes and T cells – all interplay in a scenario still not fully understood.
    This will be discussed at length and whatever role fat deposition plays appears late in
    atherogenesis and secondary to oxidation process and the overriding role of the
    dysfunctional endothelium. Coconut oil has no role at all to play in this highly complex
    and still ill understood process.

    • Art Tricque says:

      On the one hand, we have one eight year-old article in an obscure journal, and on the other: “The United States Food and Drug Administration, World Health Organization, International College of Nutrition, the United States Department of Health and Human Services, American Dietetic Association, American Heart Association, British National Health Service, and Dietitians of Canada recommend against the consumption of significant amounts of coconut oil due to its high levels of saturated fat.”

      • Latifa Ring says:

        Most people would rather die of a heart attack than from alzheimers’ especially with the cold hearted doctors that will label them terminal and the uncaring nursing homes that will refuse to feed them and then finally a hospice entity that will drug them do death.

        Yeah, I say take the coconut oil and tumeric which may in fact help to counter the cardiac risk of the coconut oil and take your chances and more days with your family and loved ones and less days of suffering.

        Maybe we should start a public poll. In fact I think that is a great idea !

  12. Derrell says:

    Yes it is true that is an eight year old study which was written by the Philippine Journal Of CARDIOLOGY. There is evidence to this day that suggest Alzheimer’s, Heart disease and diabetes is far more common in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K. then other countries where Coconut oil and Turmeric is widely used for everyday cooking.

    • Dianne Sousa says:

      Derrell,

      And in other countries where coconut oil and turmeric are widely used for everyday cooking, religions other than christianity predominate as well. Other gods are widely prayed to everyday. Alzheimers, heart disease and diabetes is far more common here where these gods enjoy fewer devotions. Therefore, alongside a daily dose of coconut oil and turmeric, why not face Mecca and say a prayer to allah? Other foods are certainly more common outside the west too, like durian fruit. Subsitute durian for your grapefruit every morning as well.

      Why accept only one correlation as proof positive of what’s curative and what isn’t? Why not them all?

    • Art Tricque says:

      Derrell, you are dodging the issue: are you saying your one eight year-old article in an obscure journal contradicts the evidence that has lead a list of the most important health organizations on the planet to say that high saturated fat diets should be avoided?

      And your suggestion that countries where coconut oil and turmeric are used have less Alzheimers, heart disease and diabetes — which you have not supported by any quality sources — is more than simply correlation rather than causation (thanks Dianne for making the point!): India has Western levels of diabetes for example. See, as a sample of the sources available, http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-11-07/india-s-deadly-diabetes-scourge-cuts-down-millions-rising-to-middle-class.html for a news article or the info at the home page of Novo Nordisk India’s web site (Novo Nordisk is a world leader in diabetes treatment) at http://www.novonordisk.co.in/documents/promotion_page/document/diab.asp ; the latter says: “India has the highest number of people affected by diabetes with 41.5 million affected in 2008 and the projected figure for 2030 is 80 million.”

  13. Diane says:

    Obviously, there are widely differing opinions here. Some of which are based on:
    A) Quoted Science ie: CARDIOLOGY July-September 2003, Volume 31 Number 3:97-104 COCONUT OIL: Atherogenic or Not?
    B) Explained Biochemistry i.e.: Mary Newport MD says…
    C) Personal Experiences
    D) Staunch Opinions with No First-Hand knowledge in any of the other categories
    I consider myself as just an interested party, looking for as much information on the subject of Coconut Oil, as I can obtain. My opinion thus far from this website’s comments and others I’ve sought out is this:
    1) To those who argue the government’s present position on this, I say.. Are you not aware of how many times government agencies have changed their previous statements and recommendations with regard to food and drugs? Could Coconut Oil be next? I don’t know but, neither do you.
    2) To Mary Newport MD, et al, whose claims for the benefit of Coconut Oil is based on biochemistry… Do you know why government agencies have not reversed their opinion on this evidence? Evidence that is being presented to the public at-large, so seemingly simple to understand? Setting aside briefly the Alzheimer’s issues and claims, wouldn’t getting the government to reverse their standing on the metabolizing of Coconut Oil be a real advance? As one can see in the foregoing comments, again setting aside the Alzheimer issue, not believing the explanation of the difference in metabolizing this fat; that it can’t elevate the ‘bad” LDL cholesterol, and that it elevates the “good”, HDL cholesterol, is clearly not being accepted in this forum, or for that matter, in many others. If you want this to become widely accepted and thereby help your cause, you must get the government to reverse their status of Coconut Oil.
    3) Regarding the Alzheimer’s (and other dementias issue): The unbiased, scientific, double-blind, government approved use of Coconut Nut Oil or any of its components, to: a) Lessen the effectives of the Disease, b) Slow-down its Process, c) Reverse its Symptoms, d) Cure it, or at best, e) Prevent it entirely, are not on the immediate horizon. Furthermore, (and this is even more so my own opinion, but I’m fairly certain most of those currently using it would agree), if and when any correlated discovery is made, it won’t be for Coconut Nut oil per se, but a derivative of one of its components. I believe that is what the proponents community is hoping for…
    4) To those administering Coconut Oil for Alzheimer’s, who claim they have seen any kind of benefit, I say, continue… I must agree that even if the statements made that it does not elevate LDL, are not true, a person dying of Alzheimer’s and in the grips of all that it entails… Well, how can elevated cholesterol levels even matter!
    5) To those who mock and argue derisively, with those administering Coconut Oil for Alzheimer’s, I say… It is so very obvious that you have never first-handedly gone through the experience of a loved one with Alzheimer’s. Nor participated in the devastation it prevails upon an entire family, the description of which mere words can ever impart. Back-off on your opinion about them using Coconut Oil. And your comments about cholesterol and heart attacks in conjunction with Alzheimer’s patients is, for reasons I stated above, simply ridiculous .
    6) Now onto what I see as comments made basically because of what this site is about… Skepticism. Most people I know would classify me as a skeptic. After all, I check out any emails for their falsehoods and promptly notified their senders of their misinformation and where to go to seek evidence for themselves. On this site however, I have found no effective, evidence (for all the reasons I’ve previously stated) concerning the issues surrounding Coconut Oil. What I did see were innocent people, trying to do the very best for their loved ones, up against those who are not personally, and more importantly, not First-Handedly qualified, as biochemists, or researchers in this particular area. I understand that one should not promote false-hoods nor give false hopes. But this issue, with regard to Alzheimer’s should be viewed in a different way. There’s simply not enough proof, evidence, researcher, etc., to favor in either direction at this point. And cleaving to old standards and understandings are not evidence either. Basically, the world is not flat, is it? Theories stated here have not been fully proven or disproven. I leave this site sadly with no acquired benefit or any more knowledge of the subject than when I arrived. However, though a skeptic myself, I have found some here have gone beyond the argumentative threshold, and simply turned nasty and in some cases, cruel.

    • Jason says:

      I can’t, I tried to let it go, but can’t …..

      Point 5 …. It is “not” very obvious that someone that comments in a mocking or argumentative fashion has never been touched by the illness. That is a complete red herring. I supplant that sometimes mockery and ridicule is not only an effective but an appropriate response in certain circumstances. I might agree that if there is no thrust to the comments or purpose then it could be an opinion that is pointless and without merit, but if the rational is to highlight lapses in reason or flaws then I can not agree that the opinions expressed should be “Backed-off” simply because it does not adhere to your standard of etiquette.

      Point 6 …. Perhaps I am misunderstanding your point, but I do not see how an issue which deals with illness and deeply invested emotions should be viewed any different. Since you see no clear evidence either for or against, the default position should remain of skepticism, and if anything, precisely because of the nature of the discussion, I would supplant a higher degree of skepticism might be appropriate.

      • Latifa Ring says:

        Obviously you are part of the problem. Are you a member of one of the organizations that is making a killing off of researching this disease?

        Preventing Alzheimer’s is probably more important that heart disease right now. The cost of care for Alzheimers is the highest by far and the suffering greater.

      • Art Tricque says:

        COmmenter Latifa Ring says “Are you a member of one of the organizations that is making a killing off of researching this disease?” Are you part of the coconut oil processors’ association? Neither argument carries any weight.

  14. Art Tricque says:

    “1) To those who argue the government’s present position on this, I say.. Are you not aware of how many times government agencies have changed their previous statements and recommendations with regard to food and drugs? Could Coconut Oil be next? I don’t know but, neither do you.”

    This argument fails on two levels.

    The list of organizations that do not support coconut oil includes non-governmental bodies.

    The argument is a fallacy: because government regulators have been wrong on other things, they are wrong about coconut oil. Or another way, because government regulators could be wrong about coconut oil, we should accept that coconut oil is effective.

    • jms says:

      Art………you’re a trusting individual. The FDA, WHO, NIH, CDC, etc are all politicized now and I don’t believe much of anything coming from them. I am a pharmacist and have a deep interest in cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease.

      I can assure you that saturated fat has nothing to do with raising cholesterol or increasing the risk of heart disease. Those are the facts and can be verified in the writings of Mary Enig PhD and Uffe Ravnskov, MD, Phd. To save space and time look them up. Here’s a couple of links. http://www.ravnskov.nu/cholesterol.htm and http://www.eatfatlosefat.com/research.php.

      If anything in the diet is responsible for heart disease it is trans fats and increased amounts of carbohydrates and polyunsaturated omega-6 fatty acids. The typical US diet is touted to have an omega-6/omega-3 ratio of anywhere from 20:1 to 45:1. The traditional Japanese diet is about 4:1 and Paleo man about 1:1.

      To get back to the original article above relating to the use of coconut oil to treat Alzheimer’s disease (AD), it makes perfect sense that there could be a positive effect of the coconut oil on cognition in AD patients. If you also took the time to do some research you would’ve known that a company has been conducting clinical trials on the use of ketone-producing medium chain triglycerides (MCT) as an AD treatment. If you had done some research on this matter you would also know that AD is also called Type 3 diabetes. In other words the glucose uptake mechanism in the neuron cells of the brain are not functioning properly and the neurons are starved of glucose which they need for energy. Ketone bodies are an alternative energy source for neuronal cells – a well known fact that is indisputable. The MCTs are taken orally and are immediately metabolized in the liver to makie ketone bosdies (beta-hydrozybutyrate to be specific). The ketone bodies pass through the blood brain barrier and supply the much needed energy to the glucose starved neuron cells. A very logical scientific hypothesis that has resulted in positive data. The MCTs are not commercially available so what Dr Newport did is give her AD stricken husband coconut oil which is high in medium chain chain fatty acids (several different species of MCTs by the way), The MCTs from the coconut oil are also metabolized in the liver and make ketone bodies which also pass through the blood brain barrier and supply energy to the otherwise glucose starved neuron cells.

      So it make perfectly logical sense to use coconut oil and any scientist would predict that it would work and it does as Dr Newport has documented. Does or will it work in all AD patients? I would guess not. But the potential benefit (cost and quality of life) far outweighs any risk. I can’t think of any risk other than the cost of a 16oz jar of extra virgin coconut oil.

      You seem like the kind of person that believes that diet and supplements have no role in correcting serious health issues. Take a look at this where elimination of omega-6 fatty acids in the diet and supplementation with fish oil “CURED” a soft tissue sarcoma lung cancer in a 703 year old man. He received no other treatment, he verified his purchases and diet, was followed by an oncologist and the results were published in a peer reviewed medical journal. Imagine that!!

      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16201843

      • Art Tricque says:

        It has nothing to do with trust. In general, analyses that are published by serious, major national and world health organizations are of higher quality than others. That does not mean anyone should not consider them critically. A medical professional like a pharmacist should do likewise, instead of choosing to not “…believe much of anything coming from them.”

        “I can assure you that saturated fat has nothing to do with raising cholesterol…” I do not find the citation of a maverick researcher far outside the consensus in any way reassuring.

        Thank you for your clear and succinct writings of the effect of ketones. It will benefit other readers of this discussion. I had already looked up all the research through PubMed searches and references to articles cited by Dr. Newport, and was familiar with the strand of thinking. It is an interesting approach, but the bottom line question to all of it is: what has been the effect on the outcome of the illness? There seems to be little to no credible evidence for constituent components of coconut oil that it has any sustained effect. Hence, the evidence in favour of the raw coconut oil is even flimsier.

        “But the potential benefit (cost and quality of life) far outweighs any risk.” As I have said elsewhere, without thorough scientific research, there is no way of knowing. Coconut oil may hasten the progression of the illness.

        “You seem like the kind of person that believes that diet and supplements have no role in correcting serious health issues.” No, this cannot be inferred. If there is good science and evidence behind anything, even standing on one’s head and rotating, I am all for it.

        “Take a look at this where elimination of omega-6 fatty acids in the diet and supplementation with fish oil “CURED” a soft tissue sarcoma lung cancer in a 703 [sic] year old man.” [For the reader it is in fact a 78 year-old man; no insult intended to Commenter jms] An interesting case report of a single individual, that is all. Would you decide to put all your patients on a new drug from Merck on the strength of a single case report?

  15. Wayne says:

    Well I have a dad with Dementia and also a friend and they both are on coco nut oil and its done absolutly nothing. Its a total con I reckon.

    Now let me give you another angle to look at. There is a guy call Tom Papania who makes claims of being a former mafia boss now turned to God. He has a Web site http://www.tompapania.com. He has made a lot of money going around telling his story and sell ing his DVDs and books etc.

    Well a friend and I spent 18 month researching this guy and found him out to be a total liar and a fake in every aspect. So we did our web page on this guy. http://www.tompapania.info this site has all the facts after our research and if you only ever go to his web site, you would have no reason to doubt his claims.

    So I say that woman doctor may just be doing the very same thing as this guy Papania has been doing for years. We have slowed him down a lot. But until we did the reasearch he went unchallened.

    For example this woman doctor makes claims and says she went to another doctor etc etc etc. Well just like we did on this Papania, you have to do the follow ups. Confront her and get the names of the doctors who she said can verify her stories with.

    I bet shes a conwoman and her and her husband are laughing all the way to the bank. You just go look at the two web sites I have told you about and you will see how easy it is to make a quick buck from a lie rather then the truth.

    I happen to like coconut oil and even cook with it a lot. But its never going to safe my dad. I have offered $50,000 to the first person on my website to produce US Governement docs that validate this Papania guy’s claims. No one has ever made claim for my money.

    Dont you think governments would rather spend money on coco nut oil then billions of dollars on old people suffering with these illnesses?

    We all like a quick fix story even stories of fiction over reality most of the time. If this was what it is claiming to be, the Coco Nut industry them self would be in on the act just for the money they would stand to make.

    Well I reckon its another snake oil product and that doctor and her hubby are living high on the hog re her book.

    Anyways if you dont agree with me please dont just ramble on about coco nut oil etc etc give me facts that back your claims. I have two people on the stuff and it doesnt do jack didderly difference. Further more Im 58 and take 2 or more table spoons a day and I still walk down to the shed and forget what Im down there for. Maybe I should be drinking the coco nut milk as well and eat whale meat like the Islander and my memory would be as good as them.

    Wayne from Sydney Australia

  16. Derrell says:

    @ Wayne
    Hey Wayne The coconut oil does not work for everyone we tried giving it to my Dad who is in the late stages of Alzheimer’s and never made any improvements. We are now giving him Turmeric and Ginger mixed in with his food three times a day and within two weeks there was an improvement. We started that March 21,2012 and my Dad is now saying a few words clear,walking with assistance, sitting in the wheel chair with no pillow’s for support, awake for long periods of time, recognizes my Mom as his wife. The total daily amount we are giving him is 1 Tsp of Turmeric divided into three meals. The Turmeric can also be mixed in with warm milk and only has a slight taste this way. We see an improvement in my Dad almost daily. Please don’t give up trying something that may work and give it at least 30 day’s before stopping. Remember it has to be given three times a day.

  17. Derrell says:

    I should have made it clear that I am not selling a book,DVD or have any shares in the Turmic market I”m simply stating what my family is giving my dad and it’s working for him and I invite people to try it to see if it works for them. There is a a person giving her Mom in the same care home as my Dad Coconut oil and its working for her as i can see a change.

  18. Art Tricque says:

    A number of commenters have suggested they can see improvements as a result of administering a number of substances, based on their or nurses or other caregivers’ observations. However, the progression of AD can only be determined by neuropsychological testing or memory testing, or perhaps supplemented by brain scans. Without such clinical evidence, observations are, as pointed out, simply family members or primary caregivers –understandably –wishing against hope to see some improvement in their loved ones, or the other caregivers or nurses trying to be kind. There is no consistent time series of test results that show that turmeric, coconut oil or any other substance “natural” or pharmaceutical has any effects on AD. I wish it were not the case for the commenters taking the postion here, but the cold, hard, and emotionally painful truth is so.

    • Derrell says:

      In the next couple months we will request a brain scan of my Dad to compare to the one he had last year to verify if there is indeed an improvement. We have no proof that my Dad’s weight gain is from simply giving him Turmeric and Ginger, we also have no proof that the turmeric played any part of the reason that my dad is able to sit in the wheel chair with no support of pillow’s of which he was not able to do before, we have no proof that the turmeric benefited him of being awake for far longer periods of time and is more alert then he has been for months. I guess what we were supposed to do is sit around and watch him slowly lose more weight. The bottom line here is my Dad is improving by simply mixing turmeric in his food 3 times a day. We have tried the coconut oil and it never showed any improvements not that we would tell anyone else not to try it. We did not tell any care aids in the home that we were giving my Dad the Turmeric when we first started they were the one’s that noticed improvements so the part of them being kind to us by saying he’s improving is not true they noticed it on their own and when they commented on his weight gain and alertness we then informed them we were mixing turmeric in with his food. Like i said previous we will request another brain scan to compare with the one that was done last year but we will wait another month or two just to make sure he’s better then he was last year. If there is indeed any improvements in the scan i’ll request it in writing and scan it so i can hopefully post those results here.

  19. Derrell says:

    I have said in previous post that before we started giving my Dad Turmeric with his meals he was not able to sit in a wheel chair with no pillow’s around him for support for months and just a few weeks after giving him Turmeric with his meal’s he is now able to sit in the wheel chair with no support and sit up straight. Would everyone not see this as an improvement? Like i also said in a previous post when asked if he know’s who my Mom is he say’s “my wife”, he has not responded like that for months. Is that not also an improvement? My Dad was not able to walk at all for months not even with assistance he is now able to walk with care aids on either side. Is that also not an improvement? I must say we were also skeptical before trying turmeric but also willing to give it a shot. It sounds like some people would not try anything that other’s have said helped just because it was not proven. Those people would just sit around and watch their loved one’s slowly die without ever knowing if they could have helped. We tried and we’re happy with the results we’re seeing.

    • Dianne Sousa says:

      Derrell,

      “It sounds like some people would not try anything that other’s have said helped just because it was not proven. Those people would just sit around and watch their loved one’s slowly die without ever knowing if they could have helped.”

      You don’t get to do this Sir. You don’t get to make it seem as if not doing whatever you can is the same as doing nothing and cruelly watching a loved one die. You are not a hero for taking a chance on turmeric and others are not failing their loved ones for not taking the same chance.

      • Derrell says:

        Dianne.
        First off i don’t think of myself as a hero for trying to help my Dad by making him healthier but it does give me a good feeling to see him smile like he has not done in months.I’m not sure if I’m misunderstanding you but you make it sound almost like what we’re doing is wrong. It’s your choice and everyone else’s if they take the chance of trying something that I said or other’s may have said helped their loved one’s. I am not forcing anyone to try what i have done I’m just stating the changes of what my family and other’s have witnessed after my Dad was given turmeric in his food three times a day. We do feel privileged to have had the opportunity to try giving my Dad Turmeric to see if it would have helped then to have him pass away without us ever knowing. We do wish we would have found out about this sooner though.

    • Jason says:

      I wish to point out that even if there is a perceived improvement without a more rigours investigation it is a fallacy to have absolute confidence in what may have been the trigger for said improvement. There could be a million and one things which may have contributed to any perceived improvement. You may be engaged in a confirmation bias regarding the turmeric and an argument from ignorance.

      However, what you could say is something interesting appeared to have happened. I would supplant this would be the catalyst for skepticism and questioning, not the end result. That is how I understand the scientific method operating, the most powerful tool we have available to discover and discern truth. You notice something occurring and set out to discover what is happening. I feel as though you are putting the cart before the horse. You claim to notice an improvement and therefore conclude it is because of action x.

      And again, this is not to say there isn’t an improvement or that it isn’t somehow related to activity x …. it is only to say your method of support for the proposition and the evidence for which the belief is grounded in is very shaky and loaded with fallacious approaches. For example, even if you produced a brain scan, it would do little in my eyes to support your case. It would leave me saying … well, you have a very interesting hypothesis, but I still do not see any justifiable reason for the belief beyond speculation and hypothesis.

      • Derrell says:

        Jason
        You make it very clear to me that no matter what evidence i can supply that Turmeric is helping my Dad is anyway you will still not be satisfied. If you feel there’s a Million and one things which could have contributed to my Dad’s improvements please let me know what those million and one things could be. To be fair i’ll supply you with some information, there has been no change in his diet for the past 3 year’s he’s been in the nursing home, there has been no change in medication in the 3 year’s he’s been in the nursing home, he has been in the same nursing home for the past 3 years and in the same room with very little staff changes. The only recent change there has been is we have put Turmeric mixed in with his food three times a day. We have also tried the virgin organic coconut oil with no improvements so we’ve stopped that. I am not trying to convince you or anyone on this site that they must give try this or anything to a loved one with Alzheimer’s that choice is left up to the individual to decide. I’m simply saying that we can see improvements since we’ve started giving my Dad Turmeric. I have no personal gain whatsoever by telling my story I’m simply saying there could be hope for someone. I’m glad people shared this information with me so we could see for ourselves it’s better for us then not knowing.

      • Jason says:

        The point being Derrell is what you are producing is not exactly evidence. Again, that comment does not mean it isn’t doing what you are contributing it to doing. The approach you are using and what you think is evidence to support your belief is exactly what countless people use to justify their belief that supplant x or activity y should be credited with specific traits that may or may not be justified, and it is just as fallacious as a manner for understanding reality.

        I don’t mean to dummy this down, but at one time it was crystal clear that if someone where ill it was an omen, demons, or spirits. Pigeons that peck a button that turned their head and are rewarded randomly with food put together the notion that it was their combined behaviour of turning their head while pressing the button which got them the food.

        The pigeon would be incorrect or have based their belief on unsupportive evidence if they explained they got the food due to their behaviour, which they had engaged in whilst food was randomly given. Those that saw illness as acts of an agent with malicious intent would be incorrect or have based their belief on unsupportive evidence if they explained someone got ill due to a lack of pleasing the spirits, or were a victim of revenge, etc. Hell, how many athletes have superstitions which they truly believe and think they have sound justifications for those superstitions? Finally, the classic case of prayer. How many people ‘know’ that it was the act of prayer which caused an illness to ease or disappear? They say what you are saying … “how much more ‘evidence’ must I give you until you accept what I am saying? I can give you eye witness testimony I was ill, I can assure you no one knew I was praying, hell, I got charts from the doctors. I was ill, I prayed I got better …. ipso facto … it was prayer. If you don’t want to believe me, fine, your lose. But why shouldn’t I share this revelation with others in the hope they might benefit?”

        We have looked into prayer …. and the evidence is continually mounting against it’s usefulness in illness. Now, turmeric … I am far from an expert but what I will submit, if there is something of value for illness, the evidence won’t come from a confirmation bias or an argument of ignorance.

        Put another way …. a statement you might express ….. I believe I have noticed a correlation between ingestion of turmeric and improvement regarding symptoms of a disease. Okay, I would say, that is a hypothesis …. not evidence. Just as someone who says, I noticed a regression of my terminal cancer after prayer would solicit a similar response …. interesting hypothesis, but it is not evidence that prayer is responsible.

        As for what the million and one things that could be …. lol, that is not for me to supply as you are making the assertion that you know what is the one thing that may be responsible for a perceived improvement that would not otherwise have occurred.

  20. Glynn says:

    I have become a little more accepting of the possibility that coconut oil is not the miracle food I had once hoped it to be. I have been putting the oil in my mother’s meals since January, and while I seem to notice more receptiveness and cheerfulness on her part, her short-term memory remains quite faulty. Now I need to ask myself if it’s worth keeping it in her diet in the hopes that it is doing some good, or whether it is actually doing harm in other ways. In answer to that question, I’m encouraged to keep her on it in light of studies that suggest that, for example, “there is no significant evidence for concluding that dietary saturated fat is associated with an increased risk of CHD or CVD.”

    I’d like to offer up these links and would appreciate comments:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/16753249/?i=8&from=/3519928/related
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/3519928/
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/20071648/

    In light of these articles, can we more confidently answer the question “what harm can it do?”

  21. Derrell says:

    “There could be a million and one things which may have contributed to any perceived improvement” Did you or did you not make this comment? Please explain the million and one other things that may have contributed to any perceived improvement.

    • Jason says:

      You missed the point entirely. It is not my job to tell you why your assertion is false but you to explain why I should accept it.

  22. Derrell says:

    This whole discussion has nothing to do with Demon’s, Omens,spirits,prayer’s, religion or even pigeon’s, we’re not talking about bird flu here we’re talking about Turmeric, Coconut oil and Alzheimer’s. Try to stay on the topic.

    • Jason says:

      The topic I was writing on is your inability to see past your logical fallacies, attempting to use, perhaps poorly, analogies. The topic is what you consider evidence is perhaps not, but is merely a hypothesis for which you may be unjustly leaning on.

  23. Derrell says:

    I have stated the changes my family as well as other’s have seen in my Dad over the period of time we started mixing Turmeric in his food. The question here is Did the turmeric in fact play a role in these changes? I have stated no other changes were made to his diet, medication or living conditions. People can make up their own minds from there. If anyone feels there could have been something other then the Turmeric that could have contributed to these changes please explain what else could have contributed to these changes instead of using words like a million and one other things.

    • Jason says:

      Again, it is not the outsider persons job to ‘prove you wrong.’ You are the one making the claim, it is up to you to provide the evidence.

      • Derrell says:

        Did you not try to prove me wrong by saying my Dad’s improvements could have been contributed from a million and one things without elaborating? Please elaborate on what these million and one things could be. I simply made a statement that my Dad was improving since we started putting turmeric in his food three times a day. I have stated what those improvements were. It’s up to the reader’s here to do what they want with the information I’ve provided. Believe or not it’s your choice. If you want evidence your welcome to check out the care home he’s in.

      • Jason says:

        I am going to stop, as this is an exercise in futility on my part. I have turned into one of those commenters that does not stop …. brrrr, a shiver just went up my spine. But Derrell, I tried to clearly state that whether there was an actual improvement or not, and whether it was due to the turmeric or not is not to point. The point I was trying to make is that you seem to agree with now, is without further study, you can not be sure what is actually going on. Thats it, and any claim that any improvement is due to turmeric ingestion would be hasty and unsupported at this time. Period.

  24. Karl Baba says:

    I think it’s silly to be afraid of trying a food to help a disease when it’s cheap, the downside is negligible, and the person has a fatal disease. It’s true that the drug industry does not fund studies on treatments they can not sell.

    Nobody is saying there is medical evidence to discredit that coconut might help? Why is there not this evidence debunking it? Because it’s not being studied. Why is that?

    Saying “there is no evidence” is a cop-out when denying someone to try something generally recognized as safe

    • Art Tricque says:

      Something that has not been studied is not yet recognized as safe. Derrell may be killing his father faster, and what is worse is that he seems completely oblivious to the possibilty.

      Karl, if you would like to study it, nothing is stopping you. Apply for a grant, hire the experts, get the test subjects, and so on. The process is not mysterious. Drug companies of course will not fund something they cannot sell. *All* companies everywhere work to make profits. However, lots of governments and foundations offer hundreds of millions in grant funding.

      • Derrell says:

        Art. You seem very intelligent well beyond myself and well educated well beyond myself but be serious here. How many people have you heard of dying from ingesting to much Turmeric? We are giving him 1 Tsp a Day. Has this killed anyone? I’m not doing some experiment like you suggested below, my Dad is not my patient, I have read something that may help his health and thought i would try it to see if it makes any difference in his well being and it has helped. I have no regrets trying this. I also believe by reading some comments from other’s that Coconut oil has helped some people with Alzheimer’s but it never made any difference with my Dad. Chemotherapy works for some people with some cancer’s but not for everyone. Does this mean no one should be going through Chemotherapy that has cancer? Who are you to make my decision’s as well as other people’s?

      • Jason says:

        I am doing it again … argh!

        ” I have read something that may help his health and thought I would try it to see if it makes any difference in his well being and it has helped.”

        You do not know that, you are simply asserting it. It may or may not have helped, but you can not ‘know’ that.

        Feel free to try any thing you wish … just get away from the certainties.

  25. Art Tricque says:

    PS Whether the nurses knew you were feeding your dad turmeric or mot is irrelevant: you knew. That means it was single-blinded only. You interpret their comments through rose-coloured glasses, and they may still just be trying to be kind. Without a continuous series of neuropsychological test results, casual observations by a layperson with strong emotional ties to a test subject are at risk for severe bias. This is elementary scientific study process that exists because it addressed problems identified from faulty studies conducted in the past. You are conducting research on your father in a manner that eould get academics and researchers fired because it would be considered shoddy and unethical. You are not doing it for your father: you are doing it for yourself. If you truly cared for your patient, you would stop this nonsense experimentation and enjoy spending time with your father period.

  26. Derrell says:

    In India, Alzheimer’s disease is fairly uncommon, with a less than 1 percent chance of people over the age of sixty-five living in certain rural areas developing the disease. The risk is just 2.4 percent for those who live in the larger cities and rural areas. When comparing these percentiles to the people living over the age of sixty-five in the United States, depending on where we are living, our chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease range from a little under five percent to seventeen percent. The question is, what are people living in India doing differently than we are doing here in the United States? The answer seems to curry, a zesty spice and staple of Indian foods, which has been proven to prevent changes in the brain that lead to Alzheimer’s disease, and may also reverse some of the damage already present.

    Curry, which comes from the turmeric plant, gets its recognizable bright yellow pigment from curcumin, a compound found in turmeric. There have been numerous studies on turmeric and its health benefits for humans proving its ability to help the body get rid of cancer-causing toxins. Turmeric also blocks estrogen receptors and enzymes that promote cancer. This nutrient has also been found to stop the growth of new blood vessels in cancerous tumors, which is important in keeping the cancer from getting larger and spreading throughout the body. One of turmeric’s greatest benefits is its ability to reduce, prevent, and stop inflammation, which plays a huge role in Alzheimer’s disease.

    Plaques and tangles, which are complex growths I the brain that cause Alzheimer’s disease, are the hallmarks of this disease. Researchers have always noted the presence of inflammation wherever plaques and tangles form when studying the brain damage caused by Alzheimer’s disease. Previously, this inflammation was thought to be simply a consequence of Alzheimer’s disease, but scientists now believe the inflammation starts a chain reaction which ultimately contributes to the development of Alzheimer’s disease. When cells in the brain are disrupted by inflammation, amyloid, a protein found in the brain normally, begins to act chaotically resulting in the creation of beta-amyloid, which is toxic to cells in the brain. Sticky deposits of beta-amyloid build up and collect around the cells, creating dense clumps of plaques that the brain cannot break down or get rid of, allowing then to stay where they are and slowly accumulate. Tangles are caused when long protein fibers that act like scaffolding for the brain cells begin to twist and tangle due to inflammation, and cause the cell to be damaged and eventually die. However, the tangled proteins remain in the brain cell even after the dead neuron is gone. These abnormalities of protein in the brain cause roadblocks that interfere with electrochemical messengers, diminishing the remaining healthy cells’ activity. Research of identical twins has proven that if one twin has Alzheimer’s disease, there is a sixty percent chance the other twin will also develop the disease. In a study of 20,000 twins, only 109 pairs of siblings had one twin diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, while the other one was not. It was also concluded that the twin with Alzheimer’s disease almost always had chronic gum disease, which although it is not the cause of Alzheimer’s disease, the disease that plays a large role in chronic gum disease may also signal the role of an inflammatory process that is stuck in overdrive. The inflammatory process might even occur years before the onset of Alzheimer’s as a result of any number of infections people can contract. Current research is looking for ways to protect brain cells from inflammation.

    When researchers begin studying a disease, they look for similarities to help them determine how and why the disease occurs. They know Alzheimer’s disease has an important connection to inflammation, and also know that turmeric reduces inflammation. When researchers noticed the fact that people in India eat high amounts of curry from turmeric and have very low rates of Alzheimer’s disease, they began to conclude that turmeric might be able to prevent or even treat the disease. The research they have developed around these trends has backed up this theory.

    Amazing findings are coming from curry research thus far. Not only does turmeric slow down cancer growth, it has also been shown to correct cystic fibrosis in mice, help prevent the onset of alcoholic liver disease, and slow down other serious brain diseases including multiple sclerosis. Researchers from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) studying turmeric have found it to be more effective than the drugs that are currently being investigated for Alzheimer’s disease treatment and prevention. They have discovered that the actual structure and shape of turmeric allows it to penetrate the blood-brain barrier so that it can bind to beta amyloid. Similarly, other research shows that turmeric helps remove the beta amyloid that is already built up in the neurons. Turmeric also helps maintain healthy brain cellular metabolism, helps the cells repair themselves, and keeps the cells connected to each other. To sum it up, turmeric helps brain cells stay healthy.

    Scientists have recently been studying ibuprofen, one of the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) investigated for Alzheimer’s disease prevention. Ibuprofen belongs to a family of drugs that are most often used to get rid of headaches, mild arthritis, and other kinds of pain and inflammation. In the studies, patients took 800 mg of day of ibuprofen for two years. Although the research suggested that ibuprofen might reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s, the side effects were too harmful for it to be a valid lifelong prevention and treatment. Some of these side effects include gastrointestinal bleeding, and analgesic nephropathy (a type of kidney damage). As discussed earlier, turmeric appears to block and break up brain plaques that cause the disease, and also helps reverse some of the damage that is already present.

    If you enjoy Indian cuisine, then by all means enjoy the food and you’ll benefit your brain and appetite both. However, American meals rarely contain curry, which is why supplements that contain extracts are suddenly very popular. There are actually numerous turmeric/curcumin supplements on the market today. Like all nutritional supplements, some turmeric supplements are better than others. Read the labels to make sure the turmeric extract you are buying provides the protection that you need. Also, look for high-potency turmeric extract that is standardized to contain 90% curcuminoids, which is the active ingredient in turmeric that is responsible for all of the positive research findings. Turmeric extract and other herbal supplements for memory can be found at your local or internet health food store.
    http://www.articledashboard.com/Article/Turmeric-Extract-May-Help-Prevent-Alzheimer-s-Disease/215840

  27. Derrell says:

    If the turmeric never helped my Dad being able to sit up in a wheel chair which he has not been able to do in months I’m not sure what did as nothing has changed in the past 12 months other then mixing Turmeric in his food since March 21, 2012. If anyone has any other idea’s what could have made this change please share it with us. Also well your at it please also share how he was able to recognize my Mom as his wife which has also not done for months. These changes were not made by praying to the East,West,North or South as we aren’t the praying type so prayer’s were not answered. Please share your idea’s instead of saying your sure it was not the Turmeric. I’m sure it was the Turmeric as nothing else has changed. You cannot say it was not the Turmeric as you do not know my Dad’s situation. What authority are you on the subject of Alzheimer’s anyways? What kind of qualifications do you have to comment on this and my Dad? You obviously do not know what condition he was in prior to ingesting Turmeric or even after.

    • Jason says:

      OMG …. you say we are not authorities … rightly so … but neither are you! Second, you say ‘I’m sure it was Turmeric …’ You might think you are sure, but you can’t be. You can have a hunch, a probability, maybe …. maybe a safe assurance, but you can not be sure. Finally … and again, kicking a dead horse here, no one else is required to tell you what may have been responsible for any perceived improvement. We are not even sure any perceived improvement would have happened on it’s own.

      I wonder what is causing the resistance to understanding you are not in a position to make claims of certainty on this matter?

      • Derrell says:

        Do you really think my Dad would be able to sit in a wheelchair with no support after months of needing support if there was no improvement? Do you really think people with Alzheimer’s would be able to do this without any intervention? I’m not specialist on the matter but my Grandmother had Alzheimer’s and 4 of my Uncle’s none of them improved over time. I have watched them slowly deteriorate. If you really think my Dad started recognizing my Mom and staying awake for longer periods of time and being able to sit in the wheel chair with not support all on it’s own you know allot less about Alzheimer’s then i do. You clearly have no other explanation other then maybe it happened on it’s own. That’s not much different then saying people with cancer would survive without Chemotherapy lets sit around and watch to see if the cancer goes away by itself. Alzheimer’s does not improve without some sort of intervention. The only intervention that took place was adding Turmeric to my Dad’s diet. Do you have any other explanation other then “maybe it improved all on it’s own”? No one person on here so far has given me an educated answer for what else could have caused the improvements of what i stated. It must be the Turmeric.

  28. Precepts says:

    The Western medical establishment has a poor history of credibility in regards to coconut oil and fats in general. No matter that the evidence against saturated fats was dubious, coconut oil was found guilty of having high amounts of saturated fats and became the object of a smear campaign. Now decades later and with an obesity epidemic it turns out that refined carbohydrates are worse. Milk and eggs, those other foods high in saturated fat? Healthy again.

    Coconut oil has thousands of years of history in Ayurvedic medicine. Even in Western medicine cannot totally deny its unique properties but because of the smear campaign it is most commonly referred to in the scientific medical literature disguised as “MCT oil”. The ludicrous smear on coconut oil is highlighted when one considers that for all its saturated fats, those saturated fats happen to be the same ones found in human breast milk—the healthiest food for babies! They add these coconut oil fats to synthetic baby formula to try to approximate breast milk!

    So should people be surprised that the medical establishment that recommends statins to lower cholesterol levels in the brain—despite the brain being made up significantly of cholesterol and cholesterol playing a vital function in the brain—has a record of failure in addressing Alzheimers? Consider that knowledge of ultra high fat diets to suppress seizures in children is still relatively unknown despite being a therapy discovered in the 1930s.

    • Art Tricque says:

      Formula is for babies, not for adults suffering from forms of dementia. The argument is not cogent.

  29. Fanny Hasagun says:

    This is very sad reading this. Desperate people looking for help (and maybe a little compassion or advice), reading everything possible, replies by arrogant skeptics. It’s great to be skeptical, it’s rude and uncalled for to be rude, cocky and condescending. Don’t bother them with any facts, they have an opinion. Dagnabit, FDA didn’t find any truth in it. Therefor, it just can’t be true. Yes, I know it isn’t up to the skeptic to prove that a claim isn’t true, it’s up to the person making the claim. WE KNOW. It’s just a discussion. In particular, Diane, we don’t care what an intellectual, rational, so perfect person you are. No one cares. We don’t have to like you though, you seem to like yourself enough for all of us dumbells out here. These people on here are going through horrible times with someone they love. There might be a better way to reach people with kindness and suggestion of facts than to boast and brag about the fact that you are way too smart to believe in ghosts and Gods. I could puke right now. Regardless of coconut oil helping, not helping, causing high cholesterol. Stop being so arrogant. By the way the FDA …..are you kidding? Kind of like a wolf guarding the chicken coop but that’s only my opinion, not a fact, so chill out. You are not any different in your stiff and rigid selective facts than the people who might blindly try something….anything to help for a FATAL disease. The disease is fatal. You just want to brag and boast. Carl Sagan took the time to try and reach all of us “average intelligent” people. How many “average people” did he reach?….more than you ever will. Sure wasn’t this type of approach when he wrote Science as a Candle in the dark. Cut the sarcasm and rudeness Diane. You are not that big of a deal and are truly a pain in the ass. I wish everyone on here with a loved one disappearing, peace and strength. Don’t let anyone make it harder for you. No one feels like a hero losing a loved one.

  30. Derrell – do you have a citation for the information you posted here? I did a bit of a search and came up with the following:

    http://www.neurology.org/content/51/4/1000.short

    Prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias in rural India
    The Indo-US study

    Conclusions: In this population, the prevalence of AD and other dementias was low, increased with age, and was not associated with gender or literacy. Possible explanations include low overall life expectancy, short survival with the disease, and low age-specific incidence potentially due to differences in the underlying distribution of risk and protective factors compared with populations with higher prevalence.

    This is a separate issue of whether turmeric has any effect.

  31. William Mitchell says:

    Mr Davis and Art need to do a little better research on saturated fats.

    Instead of parroting what is stated by our big authorities why don’t you actually look at the entire studies that are suppose to support the idea that saturated fat is so bad for us.

    You would quickly realize that saturated fat isn’t dangerous.

  32. Art Tricque says:

    “Tamra darling, are you a naturopathic doctor by any chance? or perhaps a homeopath working for the big supplement industry? Based on your comments, that just drips off you.”

    Neither your comments to me, nor my hypothetical ones here have any bearing on the arguments we each present.

  33. Michael says:

    Wish I had stumbled upon this conversation earlier, but there is a lot of evidence that ketotsis, where in the body is primarily using ketones derived from either dietary or body fat has been successfully used to treat a wide range of metabolic disorders including obesity, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and perhaps Parkinson’s among others. Coconut oil is a easily converted energy source for the production of ketones.

    I consider myself a skeptic and most of the epidemological studies that Art kept going on about are generally garbage. A goverment commission using very controversial data came up with the dietary recommendations in the 1970′s largely based upon the 7 countries study. These recommendations have led to the public health disaster we are seeing unfold today, rampant obesity, diabetes and other forms of metabolic derangement and any and all interest groups that feed either upon the teat of the government or corporate largesse toes the line despite increasing evidence to the contrary.

    Art,while I appreciate your skepticsm, it is sad that you don’t apply it to the party line that is being fed to you. Next time you decide to weigh in on a subject, at least to some independent research on the subject rather than accepting at face value what the government and other vested interests tell you. My first on a list of suggested readings in Gary Taubes “Good Calories, Bad Calories” and then take a look at this http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/print/2010/11/lies-damned-lies-and-medical-science/8269/ to get a feel for what the general quality of most research that you depend on for your skepticism.

  34. marina says:

    Derrell,

    Don’t ever let anybody discourage you from thinking outside the box. By doing research on your own instead of blindly trusting the omnipotent medical “experts” who often turn out to be more ignorant than the patient, you may have stumbled onto something that actually helps improve your Dad’s health and, maybe, even give him a few extra years with his family. What could be wrong with that?

    To all the doubting Thomases out there I say: “You belong to the same type of people so long ago that insisted the earth was flat just because there was no physical proof that it wasn’t.”

    Open your minds and start believing that we are all capable of healing ourselves. Nobody knows your body better than YOU! Western medical practitioners treat the symptoms of an illness only and don’t even try to look for the cause of the disease, which could be psychological, spiritual or nutritional.

    If you don’t buy into the nutritional aspect, let me assure you that I have healed myself from a couple of afflictions in the past with certain vitamin and mineral supplements.

    Example: During my first pregnancy I developed a mysterious rash that baffled the prenatal doctor. I researched the symptoms and found out that they matched vitamin B2 deficiency (Riboflavin). I started taking a vitamin B complex for approx. one week and the rash disappeared completely. When I went for my next prenatal check, the doctor was surprised to see the rash gone. I told her how I got rid of it and she literally told me: “There is no way that vitamins cured this rash. I suspect you have Lupos.” Well, that was 23 years ago and I’m fine.

    Yes, you can heal yourself and your loved ones! Do the research! The answers are out there.

  35. al kimeea says:

    “Western medical practitioners treat the symptoms of an illness only and don’t even try to look for the cause of the disease, which could be psychological, spiritual or nutritional.”

    ever hear of viral?

    the kind western medical practitioners who treated me holistically listened to the symptoms, took some blood, confirmed and then got rid of the virus I had contracted from another infected person

    not because I had bad thoughts, juju or diet

    BTW Big Pharma did this for free because they alone have to show their work and can’t charge while doing so

    $CAM peddlers usually aren’t required and fail when they do anyway

  36. Derrell says:

    Hi Marina
    Thanks for the encouragement. We will not be discouraged by any comments on this forum as we are continually seeing good results. Before we started mixing Turmeric in with my Dad’s meals he was 92 Lbs March 21,2012. We just weighed him again May 11,2012 and he is now 98 Lbs. While we are unsure of how this is affecting his short term memory there has been some improvements in his health.

  37. Art Tricque says:

    That you have been feeding your father food and that he has gained wait is entirely unremarkable, and a dramatically more mundane claim than what you made before.

  38. Art Tricque says:

    Ugh. “weight” not “wait”

  39. Derrell says:

    We have been feeding my Dad food for two year’s and he’s been steadily losing weight. When we started adding Turmeric to his food we noticed he was gaining weight and yes it’s spelled weight. No other changes were made to his diet or medications. He is also now able to sit in a wheelchair with no support of pillow’s, something he hasn’t be able to do for months.

  40. Derrell says:

    In India, Alzheimer’s disease is fairly uncommon, with a less than 1 percent chance of people over the age of sixty-five living in certain rural areas developing the disease. The risk is just 2.4 percent for those who live in the larger cities and rural areas. When comparing these percentiles to the people living over the age of sixty-five in the United States, depending on where we are living, our chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease range from a little under five percent to seventeen percent. The question is, what are people living in India doing differently than we are doing here in the United States? The answer seems to curry, a zesty spice and staple of Indian foods, which has been proven to prevent changes in the brain that lead to Alzheimer’s disease, and may also reverse some of the damage already present.

    Curry, which comes from the turmeric plant, gets its recognizable bright yellow pigment from curcumin, a compound found in turmeric. There have been numerous studies on turmeric and its health benefits for humans proving its ability to help the body get rid of cancer-causing toxins. Turmeric also blocks estrogen receptors and enzymes that promote cancer. This nutrient has also been found to stop the growth of new blood vessels in cancerous tumors, which is important in keeping the cancer from getting larger and spreading throughout the body. One of turmeric’s greatest benefits is its ability to reduce, prevent, and stop inflammation, which plays a huge role in Alzheimer’s disease.

    Plaques and tangles, which are complex growths I the brain that cause Alzheimer’s disease, are the hallmarks of this disease. Researchers have always noted the presence of inflammation wherever plaques and tangles form when studying the brain damage caused by Alzheimer’s disease. Previously, this inflammation was thought to be simply a consequence of Alzheimer’s disease, but scientists now believe the inflammation starts a chain reaction which ultimately contributes to the development of Alzheimer’s disease. When cells in the brain are disrupted by inflammation, amyloid, a protein found in the brain normally, begins to act chaotically resulting in the creation of beta-amyloid, which is toxic to cells in the brain. Sticky deposits of beta-amyloid build up and collect around the cells, creating dense clumps of plaques that the brain cannot break down or get rid of, allowing then to stay where they are and slowly accumulate. Tangles are caused when long protein fibers that act like scaffolding for the brain cells begin to twist and tangle due to inflammation, and cause the cell to be damaged and eventually die. However, the tangled proteins remain in the brain cell even after the dead neuron is gone. These abnormalities of protein in the brain cause roadblocks that interfere with electrochemical messengers, diminishing the remaining healthy cells’ activity. Research of identical twins has proven that if one twin has Alzheimer’s disease, there is a sixty percent chance the other twin will also develop the disease. In a study of 20,000 twins, only 109 pairs of siblings had one twin diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, while the other one was not. It was also concluded that the twin with Alzheimer’s disease almost always had chronic gum disease, which although it is not the cause of Alzheimer’s disease, the disease that plays a large role in chronic gum disease may also signal the role of an inflammatory process that is stuck in overdrive. The inflammatory process might even occur years before the onset of Alzheimer’s as a result of any number of infections people can contract. Current research is looking for ways to protect brain cells from inflammation.

    When researchers begin studying a disease, they look for similarities to help them determine how and why the disease occurs. They know Alzheimer’s disease has an important connection to inflammation, and also know that turmeric reduces inflammation. When researchers noticed the fact that people in India eat high amounts of curry from turmeric and have very low rates of Alzheimer’s disease, they began to conclude that turmeric might be able to prevent or even treat the disease. The research they have developed around these trends has backed up this theory.

    Amazing findings are coming from curry research thus far. Not only does turmeric slow down cancer growth, it has also been shown to correct cystic fibrosis in mice, help prevent the onset of alcoholic liver disease, and slow down other serious brain diseases including multiple sclerosis. Researchers from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) studying turmeric have found it to be more effective than the drugs that are currently being investigated for Alzheimer’s disease treatment and prevention. They have discovered that the actual structure and shape of turmeric allows it to penetrate the blood-brain barrier so that it can bind to beta amyloid. Similarly, other research shows that turmeric helps remove the beta amyloid that is already built up in the neurons. Turmeric also helps maintain healthy brain cellular metabolism, helps the cells repair themselves, and keeps the cells connected to each other. To sum it up, turmeric helps brain cells stay healthy.

    Scientists have recently been studying ibuprofen, one of the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) investigated for Alzheimer’s disease prevention. Ibuprofen belongs to a family of drugs that are most often used to get rid of headaches, mild arthritis, and other kinds of pain and inflammation. In the studies, patients took 800 mg of day of ibuprofen for two years. Although the research suggested that ibuprofen might reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s, the side effects were too harmful for it to be a valid lifelong prevention and treatment. Some of these side effects include gastrointestinal bleeding, and analgesic nephropathy (a type of kidney damage). As discussed earlier, turmeric appears to block and break up brain plaques that cause the disease, and also helps reverse some of the damage that is already present.

    If you enjoy Indian cuisine, then by all means enjoy the food and you’ll benefit your brain and appetite both. However, American meals rarely contain curry, which is why supplements that contain extracts are suddenly very popular. There are actually numerous turmeric/curcumin supplements on the market today. Like all nutritional supplements, some turmeric supplements are better than others. Read the labels to make sure the turmeric extract you are buying provides the protection that you need. Also, look for high-potency turmeric extract that is standardized to contain 90% curcuminoids, which is the active ingredient in turmeric that is responsible for all of the positive research findings. Turmeric extract and other herbal supplements for memory can be found at your local or internet health food store.
    http://www.articledashboard.com/Article/Turmeric-Extract-May-Help-Prevent-Alzheimer-s-Disease/215840

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  • Erik Davis

    Erik is a technology professional based in Toronto, focused on the intersection of the internet and the traditional media and telecommunications sectors. A reluctant blogger, he was inspired by the great work Skeptic North has done to combat misinformation and shoddy science reporting in the Canadian media, and in the public at large. Erik has a particular interest in critical reasoning, and in understanding why there’s so little of it in the public discourse. You can follow Erik's occasional 140 character musings @erikjdavis