Dementia is an umbrella term form a decline in mental ability that sometimes goes to the extent of interfering with day-to-day activities. Alzheimer is the most prevalent type of dementia.
Dementia is an unspecific disease characterized with a wide plethora of symptoms linked to a decline in memory and other thinking skills. As mentioned above, Alzheimer`s is the most common type, accounting for 60-80 percent of cases.
Dementia is often improperly referred to as ‘senility’ and most people consider it as normal sign of aging. However, the truth is that it isn’t always triggered by aging. For instance, vascular dementia, which is the second most prevalent type of dementia, occurs after a stroke. There are many different conditions that cause symptoms of dementia, such as vitamin deficiencies and thyroid problems.
Although the symptoms of dementia can vary, at least two of the core mental functions below must be impaired to be considered dementia:
- Visual perception
- Communication and language
- Reasoning and judgment
- Ability to focus and pay attention
While many changes in the brain responsible for the onset of dementia are permanent and tend to worsen over time, memory and thinking issues caused by the following conditions may improve once the condition is properly addressed:
- Thyroid problems
- Vitamin deficiencies
- Medication side effects
- Excess use of alcohol
The treatment depends on the cause. While there is not cure for most progressive dementias, there are drug treatments capable of temporarily improving the symptoms. As prevention is always better than the cure, this article focuses on non-drug therapy that has been scientifically shown to help protect against dementia and Alzheimer`s.
According to a 2017 study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food, certain edible mushrooms contain bioactive components that help prevent neurodegenerative diseases like dementia and Alzheimer`s disease. This study is the first of its kind to support the potential role of mushrooms as foods to reduce or delay the onset of this disease.
“The current study might stimulate the identification of more food materials that are neuroprotective,” stated Journal of Medicinal Food Editor-in-Chief Sampath Parthasarathy, Medical Xpress reported.
This study focuses on mushrooms` components and their cognitive and neuroprotective benefits. According to Parthasarathy, this is one of the first studies done on the brain benefits of certain foods.
Mushrooms have been used for thousands of years, both for their taste and the medicinal properties they offer. As reported by Dr. Joseph Mercola, edible fungi are loaded with vitamin D and are capable of boosting the immune system. Their anti-inflammatory properties can be beneficial for individuals suffering from renal failure, stroke damage, rheumatoid arthritis, and asthma.
Needless to say, not all mushrooms are safe and healthy to eat. It has been shown that eating psilocybin, a specific type of fungi, provides a temporary mind-bending perspective on reality.
Researchers have long studied the medical properties of ‘magic mushrooms. As reported by Medical Daily, the psychedelic drug has the ability to treat those with depression or alleviate the psychological effects of cancer.