B vitamins slow progression of Alzheimer’s: Study
It was an advertisement for Activate vitamin drinks. aWe just launched a marketing campaign to stop vitamin cruelty,a said Kaska Komosinski , Activateas New York marketing manager, without a hint of irony. aVitamins deteriorate when added to water, and we want to make sure they donat get wasted.a (Click through slideshow to the right to see a demo of the Activate product.) The companyas website cites aproprietary researcha that shows vitamins A, B5, B12, and C alose their potency sitting in water.a In a way it strikes me as kind of brilliant. The girls playing the role of protesters seemed genuinely worked up, shouting with an intensity Iad never seen before in a marketing campaign, aStop vitamin cruelty!a The reason the protest model is so perfect for a marketing campaign is because protests come with a long history of anger and injustice, of movements we support, and movements we despise. No matter what I was saw when I arrived at the scene, the shouts of protest, the sight of young people exercising their right to assemble, set the stage for me to have an emotional, memorable responseaeither for or against. So when I first came through the crowd and saw the scantily clad girls I briefly thought it might be a PG version of a fur protest, the only other protests Iave ever seen that revealed so much skin. By the time I realized it was a marketing campaign I felt tricked, and a little uneasy about using the constitutional right to protest as a way to tell me about the fruit punch, blueberry, and pomegranate flavored vitamins that release into the water when I twist the bottlecap.
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The new findings came from a reanalysis of data originally collected in 2010 from 271 older adults suffering from mild cognitive impairment, a form of memory loss considered a potential precursor to Alzheimer’s disease. Although the brain naturally shrinks as we get older (about 0.5 percent per year), in people with mild cognitive impairment this shrinkage takes place twice as fast as usual. In Alzheimer’s patients, shrinkage takes place four times as fast as usual. The researchers assigned participants to take either a placebo pill or a high daily dose of three B vitamins – folic acid (0.8 mg), vitamin B6 (20 mg) and vitamin B12 (0.5 mg) – over the course of two years. They found that memory loss halted in those who took the B vitamins, but not in those who took the placebo. The vitamins also slowed brain shrinkage by 50 percent compared to the placebo, but only in patients with higher-than-normal blood levels of the amino acid homocysteine.
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Get your vitamins from your plate!
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