How to keep your brain from shrinking
Have you been watching your vitamin intake? I know that I’m always beating the drum for keeping “the good stuff” in your system, but the truth is, the health benefits of so many vitamins are so huge, it’s insane to pass on them when they’re there for the taking. Now there’s more great news about vitamin B12 that will–I hope–have you running out to the health food store as soon as you’re done reading this.
New research shows that vitamin B12 can help battle the risk of brain atrophy, which is associated with Alzheimer’s disease and other kinds of impaired cognitive function. According to the study, published in the journal Neurology, seniors who have low levels of B12 are at increased risk for brain atrophy.
This new study examined 107 patients between the ages of 61 and 87 who showed no signs of brain atrophy at the outset of the study. After five years, those with the lowest B12 levels had six times the amount of brain volume loss than those with the highest levels of B12.
The results highlighted what I’ve known for years: B12 deficiency should be rated as a major public health concern. And it’s not just the elderly who are at risk–the level of B12 can also be dangerously low in vegetarians, infants, and pregnant women. In fact, it’s difficult NOT to be B12 deficient on a vegetarian diet.
The good news is that correcting low B12 levels is easy. The best way to get it in your system is to consume plenty of meat, fish, fortified cereal, and milk–especially RAW milk. You can begin to increase your levels of vitamins B12 and B6 (as well as all important folic acid) by eating citrus fruits and fresh green leafy vegetables like spinach.
I also suggest taking 800 micrograms per day of folic acid and vitamin B12 (by mouth). In addition, take 500 milligrams of B6 per day. These nutrients are available in health food stores and many pharmacies.