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Neurodegenerative Diseases and Cognitive Decline

As the prevalence of neurodegenerative disorders is skyrocketing, numerous studies are looking at what factors result in the divergence from the normal, healthy aging of the brain to neurodegeneration, which results in accelerated aging and cognitive decline.

Dementia is an umbrella term used to describe a wide range of neurological conditions that lead to cognitive decline. The steep rise in recent years of these cases is alarming, as the medical community struggles to effectively address it. 

There are over 55 million people worldwide living with dementia and given the current trends, it is estimated that this number will double every 20 years, with Alzheimer’s being the most common.

6.2 million Americans over 65 years of age are living with Alzheimer’s Disease

Deaths from Alzheimer’s Disease have increased by 145% since 2000.

1 in 3 seniors will die of Alzheimer’s Disease or another form of dementia – nearly two thirds will be women.

Over 1 million Americans suffer from Parkinson’s Disease, which is 1.5 times more prevalent in men.

What is Alzheimer’s Disease?

Alzheimer’s Disease is a neurological disorder which usually starts slowly and progressively gets worse over time. Patients with Alzheimer's experience gradual loss of the structure and function of neurons which causes a progressive decline in behavior, memory, and thinking. It is attributed to about 60-70% of dementia cases.

What are the symptoms of Alzheimer's?

  • Confusion

  • Cognitive decline

  • Decreased alertness

  • Loss of balance and coordination

  • Memory loss

  • Disorientation

  • Difficulty performing everyday tasks

  • Misplacing things

  • Anxiety and depression

  • Difficulty thinking or concentrating

  • Changes in mood or behavior

  • Challenges in planning or problem-solving

  • Experiencing poor judgment or decision making

  • Difficulty holding or following a conversation

The accurate diagnosis and treatment of neurological disorders require the ability to assess whether these symptoms are a normal part of aging or if there are real causes for your condition.

Many doctors paint a grim outcome for your diagnosis with few options and no real answers. However, when we identify the root causes of your disease, we are more successful at decreasing symptoms - sometimes dramatically - and restoring a fully functional life. 

What is Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinson's Disease is a progressive neurological disorder that affects the nerve cells responsible for producing dopamine in your brain. When your dopamine levels decrease, you experience abnormal brain activity, resulting in Parkinson's disease symptoms. You experience disruptions to your central nervous system affecting movement, including tremors, stiffness, loss of balance, and slow movement.

What are the symptoms of Alzheimer's?

Parkinson's Disease can be quite debilitating and cause a wide variety of different symptoms. Your nervous system plays a vital role in many body functions and systems. If you have Parkinson's Disease, you may be experiencing any of the following:

  • Anxiety and depression

  • Confusion or cognitive changes

  • Decreased alertness

  • Loss of balance and coordination

  • Tremors

  • Memory loss

  • Muscle weakness

  • Numbness

  • Pain

  • Partial or complete paralysis

  • Problems with positional awareness

  • Tingling or prickling

  • Stiffness and limited movement in limbs

  • Slow movement

  • Little to no facial expression

  • Soft, slurred or stuttered speech

Factors that may cause a shift from healthy aging to neurodegeneration:

  1. Decreased ability to break down and clear proteins from the brain

  2. Inflammation

As we age, our ability to clear proteins diminishes. While this is a normal part of aging, in excess the  inability to efficiently clear proteins from the brain can result in atrophy of brain tissue, damage to the nerve synapses leading to gaps and a decrease in neuronal connections, decreased mitochondrial function (cellular energy production) and ultimately cell death. 

Chronic inflammation is a key contributing factor in neurodegeneration and cognitive decline. Free radicals, as well as the exposure to toxins, various microorganisms and heavy metals contribute to inflammation and cell damage. Inflammation in the brain can cause damage to the cells in the brain and a degradation of the blood brain barrier, resulting in overall cognitive decline.

Key Factors that Increase your Risk for a Neurodegenerative Disorder:

  • Type 2 Diabetes

  • Obesity

  • Other Chronic Inflammatory Conditions (i.e., autoimmune conditions, cardiovascular disease)

  • Smoking

  • Exposures to toxins, microorganisms and heavy metals

  • Significant nutrient deficiencies

  • Gut dysfunction

We take an innovative, multi-prong approach to not only prevent, but also in some cases reverse neurodegeneration and associated cognitive decline.

Our expertise in a variety of advanced and state-of-the art modalities provides us with many tools to directly address and effectively treat neurological and neurodegenerative conditions. These therapeutics are also highly effective in addressing other issues related to aging such as minor cognitive decline, memory loss, lack of mental clarity and sharpness, as well as mental fatigue.

Natural Compounds, Herbs Nootropics and Nutraceuticals:

Peptide Therapy:

  • Selank is another peptide which provides powerful cognitive effects. It is often prescribed as a nasal spray, as it can be broken down in the digestive tract. By administering directly into the nasal passage, it is more directly delivered to the brain. Selank is used to treat anxiety, increase energy, reduce depression by boosting serotonin levels, as well as to improve overall cognitive function.

  • Dihexa is a peptide naturally found in the body, which is also a cognitive enhancer. It has been shown to have significant benefits for the brain. This compound is administered orally and has been touted as a “neuronic wonder-drug.” BDNFs (brain-derived neurotrophic factors) are often used in medications for the treatment of conditions that result in mental impairment, such as Alzheimer’s Disease and other forms of dementia. The use of Dihexa may be as much as 10X stronger than BDNFs when countering neurological disorders. Peptide therapy using Dihexa has also helped people with Parkinson’s Disease, as well as traumatic brain injury, as it promotes new synapse formation in the brain. Dihexa has also been shown to boost mental endurance, improve problem-solving skills, improve both long-term and short-term memory, improve focus and concentration, as well as to manage depression.

IV Therapy:

IV treatments containing natural compounds beneficial to the brain such as phosphatidylcholine, Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NAD+), and others.

Phosphatidylcholine is a natural compound which is crucial to brain health. This phospholipid is a major component of our cells’ outer membrane, which is vital to its protection, repair and longevity. Supplying your body with this much needed neutral lipid is key to maintaining a healthy brain. 

This also boosts choline levels in the body, which can decrease with age. Choline is an essential nutrient, which plays a fundamental role in brain health, energy production, as well as metabolism. Choline has been shown to help people retain cognitive function as they age, including memory retention, attention span, language and the ability to carry out tasks. 

Choline is an essential component in acetylcholine, an important neurotransmitter which is responsible for proper communication between the neurons in the brain and the rest of the body. Studies indicate that higher levels of choline intake can boost acetylcholine levels and can result in better cognitive performance. 

 

NAD+ is a coenzyme, which is present in all cells in the body. It is essentially that “gas” for our cells, which fuels their metabolic reactions. NAD+ plays a crucial role in brain health and its depletion has been linked to age-related diseases. NAD IV therapy is one of the best brain restoration therapies there is, as it has been shown to:

  • Protect and increase the function of neurons in the brain.

  • Protect your cells from damage, toxicity and death.

  • Improve mitochondrial function, which is the powerhouse of cell energy production.

Other oral nutraceuticals may also beneficially affect the brain at the molecular level. When used appropriately, they can improve blood brain barrier permeability, increase cellular energy in the brain, improve neuronal function, as well as reduce inflammation. The use of nootropics, which are specialized formulations of herbs and other natural compounds used to optimize neuronal function and boost brain health, are yet another crucial tool in our arsenal in our approach to addressing and combating cognitive decline. 

Diet and Lifestyle:

As with most other chronic conditions, addressing hormone imbalances, nutritional deficiencies, as well as healing the gut microbiome through supplementation, as well as dietary changes, are an essential part of our whole-body approach to overall health and wellness. 

Chronic inflammation is a root cause of neurodegenerative conditions. Therefore, we introduce an Anti-Inflammatory Diet. 

Gut microbiome health:

There is a direct line between your gut and your brain. In fact, our brain is directly linked to our gut via the vagus nerve. Increasingly, research is demonstrating a direct link between the health of our microbiome and age-related, neurodegenerative diseases. 

Stress in the mind can affect the health of your gut bacteria and associated digestion, and in turn, a disruption in your gut or intestinal microbiota can cause or contribute to your mental stress, anxiety and other cognitive impairments.

Further, a number of critically important neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine, GABA and norepinephrine are produced in our large intestines, which is why it is often referred to as “the second brain.” These neurotransmitters are vital for brain health and the ability for the brain to effectively communicate with the rest of the body.

Happy, Healthy Gut = Happy, Healthy Brain

Other lifestyle factors that can prevent cognitive decline include adequate sleep, reduced stress, staying active and being socially engaged, such as participating in hobbies and other group activities.


The synergistic effect of this multi-pronged treatment approach has led to successful outcomes for many of our patients. The combination of these innovative and cutting- edge therapies, unique to the Kellman Wellness Center, can be life-changing.

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