"Bright Idea" Battles Dementia WITHOUT Drugs
Mainstream medicine giving the thumbs up to a drug-free, non-invasive treatment for ANYTHING is like spotting a unicorn.
But that’s precisely what’s happened with dementia.
You probably already know how poor the options are for treating this disease.
Heck, even the MOST enthusiastic supporter of drug therapies will admit the existing Alzheimer’s meds are a flop. They might help someone live a few extra months and maybe help ease a few symptoms at best.
And those are the “GOOD” options. On the other hand, some dementia meds they’ve pushed have been downright dangerous.
Like the cholinesterase inhibitors from a few years ago that increase your risk of developing rhabdomyolysis (a rare disorder that breaks down muscle tissue), threatens your kidneys, and causes SEVERE PAIN.
Fortunately, there’s a better (FAR less risky) way to treat dementia symptoms.
It turns out harnessing the healing power of light can help dementia patients.
Phototherapy (sometimes called bright light therapy) uses controlled exposure to full-spectrum bright light (usually >600 lux) or wavelength-specific light (blue or blue-green light) to treat a variety of medical disorders.
It’s cheap, safe, and often very effective. In fact, if you’re a regular Living Well Daily reader, you may recall I’ve written before about using various forms of light therapy to improve depression and sleep and to ease aches and pains.
Now a new meta-analysis combining the data from several other studies confirms that people with dementia who got phototherapy performed SIGNIFICANTLY better on memory tests than those who got regular care.
The researchers behind the new study believe that light therapy helps dementia patients reset their internal clock (circadian rhythm) so they sleep better. And this can lead to measurable improvements in cognitive function.
You see, we already know that folks with dementia often battle circadian dysfunction. This means the internal clock that governs their sleep-wake cycle stops functioning correctly.
As a result, they don’t get the proper rest they need which hits the fast-forward button on memory loss.
But when the researchers took a deeper dive into the data, they found that phototherapy was linked to significant IMPROVEMENTS in cognitive function. Plus, agitation symptoms (a common issue with dementia) were improved after therapy sessions.
You don’t have to be battling dementia to benefit from phototherapy. Most of us spend the majority of our time indoors and aren’t exposed to nearly enough natural sunlight.
This can lead to sleep problems because our bodies get clues about when to be awake sleep from the quality and duration of the light we’re exposed to.
There are many ways to try light therapy. You can buy special light bulbs, light boxes, goggles, glasses, and headsets that provide the exact wavelengths you need. Most people use them daily for 30 minutes.
Phototherapy is an easy way to keep your circadian rhythm on track. And the evidence is building that it may reduce your risk of dementia too.
And another thing…
Here’s what else we’ve been chatting about this week in Living Well Daily…
Evade Dementia with a VITAMIN?! Study says, “YES!”
Fading brain power means losing your memories, your identity, and eventually your freedom. Don’t take that chance. Researchers have uncovered a remarkable, all-natural solution to SLASH your risk of developing dementia.
“One and Done” Thinking Boosts THIS Deadly Risk
Regardless if you’re an average Joe or a bit of an athlete, THIS common habit could send your risk for a deadly blood clot SOARING up to 35%.
Pleasant Pick-Me-Up Supports Gut Balance
Your gut bacteria are like a little community of tiny workers. Each bug has its own job to do. The problem is some of those bugs are working against you, HARMING your health. But new research just revealed an unexpected (and delicious) tool that can help you restore diversity and balance to your gut.
Dementia Test Raises Red Flags YEARS Earlier?!
Forgetfulness is seldom the first sign of losing your mind. But without an easy way to KNOW if your brain is firing on all cylinders, it’s only natural to worry and try to fill in the blanks on your own. Now you don’t have to. Try THIS test.
MAILBAG: Recover from Surgery FASTER
Surgery is stressful for the body (and mind). And it takes time to heal. But your recovery time CAN typically be reduced with a little extra support. Try these recovery hacks.
Snoring Could Give You DEMENTIA?!
Snoring isn’t pleasant for the snorer OR their partner, who may be forced to sleep with a pillow over their head to get some zzzs. But snoring is much more than just a pain in the ear. It could be a sign of something serious.
Trouble Focusing? The Likely Cause (and FIX)
If you’re like a LOT of folks, you find yourself continually distracted these days. I’ve got some tricks to help you reclaim your focus RIGHT HERE.
P.S. Battling lower back pain? It turns out “GOING GREEN” could be the safe and effective solution you’ve been looking for. But not in the way you might imagine.
“Phototherapy improves cognitive function in dementia: A systematic review and meta-analysis,” Brain and Behavior, First published: 05 April 2023, https://doi.org/10.1002/brb3.2952
Written By Dr. Scott Olson, ND
Nearly 25 years ago, failed mainstream medical treatments left Dr. Olson in constant pain – and his health in ruins. And that’s when he did something REVOLUTIONARY. He began his career in medicine – and dedicated his life to uncovering the true, underlying causes of disease.
Through his innovative medical practices in Tennessee and Colorado, Dr. Olson has helped cure countless seniors from across America of arthritis… heart disease… diabetes… and even cancer. All without risky prescription drugs or painful surgeries.
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