As you know, there is currently no cure for Alzheimer's disease, but researchers are exploring a number of avenues to try to find one. One of those avenues involves a signaling compound called acetylcholine.
People with Alzheimer's typically have low levels of acetylcholine, and previous research has also found that blocking acetylcholine receptors interferes with memory and the learning process. So scientists have been trying to find a way to keep acetylcholine from breaking down.
A team of researchers have decided to seek a safer alternative than some of the harsher drugs by looking to nature.
They knew that blueberries are full of nutrients that can help prevent cognitive decline, and they also knew that fermentation can help with the bioactivity of some of these compounds. So they decided to make blueberry vinegar and see whether it could help mice with induced amnesia. Sure enough, they found that the mice who received the vinegar had less acetylcholine breakdown.
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They also had higher levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which is a key protein in the process of creating and maintaining healthy neurons. The researchers evaluated whether these improved levels translated to real-world effects by having the mice complete maze and avoidance tests.
The mice who had received the blueberry vinegar performed better on both tests than the mice who went without, indicating that their short-term memory had improved. The researchers believe blueberry vinegar could be a promising option in the future.
There are multiple blueberry vinegars available. I recommend organic because blueberries are typically sprayed heavily with pesticides and herbicides. On the internet and in health food stores, the price range is from $10-$40. You can use blueberry vinegar in your salad dressing and in marinades. Not only will it aid in preventing the destruction of acetylcholine but it will also help keep your blood sugar in good order.
Better Health and Living for Women,
Frank Shallenberger, MD
Seong Min Hong, Kyong Hee Soe, Taek Hwan Lee, In Sook Kim, Young Min Lee, Beong Ou Lim. Cognitive Improving Effects by Highbush Blueberry (Vaccinium crymbosum L.) Vinegar on Scopolamine-Induced Amnesia Mice Model. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 2017; DOI: 10.1021/acs.jafc.7b03965.