Tag Archives: FDA

Does Prevagen Really Improve Memory?

I keep seeing ads for this so-called healthy brain drug PREVAGEN on the Weather Channel.

I need to preface this with a little background. I have had at least three family members die with Alzheimer’s or some form of dementia. I am going to be 76 years old next month, so you can bet I really care about my brain continuing to function at its current high level.

What about those Prevagen ads that promise, as it says on the package, “Improves memory, Supports Healthy Brain function, Sharper Mind, Clearer Thinking”?

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Sounds great if you are a senior like me – and there are millions of us. The baby boomers are all ready for a brain tune up.  Everyone who has ever suffered from a senior moment is a ripe prospect for this stuff. Cha-ching. That was the sound of a cash register.

My own first reaction was, “This is crap. They are trying to prey on the worst fears of us seniors.”

Here is what ConsumerLab.com says about Prevagen, “According to the company’s website, people who use people Prevagen (Quincy Bioscience) can “experience improved memory, a sharper mind, and clearer thinking. Unfortunately, no peer-reviewed studies have been published to back up these claims. In addition, the FDA has warned Quincy Bioscience in the past against claiming Prevagen could treat conditions such as head injuries and Alzheimer’s disease and for failing to report adverse reactions. The FDA has also claimed that the key ingredient, apoaequorin, a synthetic protein, is not an acceptable ingredient in a dietary supplement. “

As far back as 2012, MyAdvocates had a blog entry on the FDA issuing a warning letter that “accused the company of not reporting to the government “adverse events like seizures, strokes, and worsening symptoms of multiple sclerosis that had been reported to your firm as being associated with the use of Prevagen products.” Reports about the supplement to the company have also included chest pain, tremors, fainting and other serious symptoms, the FDA says.

So, my first reaction wasn’t too far afield.

But wait, seniors, don’t give up hope. I have addressed this problem numerous times on the blog. Please check out my Page – Important Facts About your Brain ( and Exercise Benefits).

Additionally, I would like to recommend the book Spark,  The revolutionary new science of exercise and the brain by John J. Ratey, M.D.

Finally, for those seniors who are doing crosswords and sudoku puzzles to stave off memory loss, check out – Exercise, not just Sudoku for Seniors.

Prevagen is a drug not a vitamin for the brain. I think you are always going to be better off if you try to better your situation naturally rather than with pills.

Eat less; move more; live longer. Words to live by.

Tony

 

 

 

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16 Reasons To GO NUTS For Nuts

Specifically, those who ate nuts five or more times per week were found to enjoy a 29% reduction in death from heart disease; an 11% reduction in death from stroke; a 23% reduction in death from infection; a 24% reduction in death from respiratory diseases; a 29% reduction in death from kidney disease; and an 11% reduction in death from cancer.

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Our Better Health

BY DR. RONALD HOFFMAN  NOVEMBER 29, 2013 

A recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine underscores the health benefits of nuts. Researchers followed over a hundred thousand men and women over several decades and concluded that eating nuts helped them stave off the Grim Reaper. Seven or more servings of nuts per week cut the risk of dying by a third! (“A serving” was defined as one ounce, which is about one handful of almonds.)

Specifically, those who at nuts five or more times per week were found to enjoy a 29% reduction in death from heart disease; an 11% reduction in death from stroke; a 23% reduction in death from infection; a 24% reduction in death from respiratory diseases; a 29% reduction in death from kidney disease; and an 11% reduction in death from cancer.

It’s long been known that nuts are heart-healthy. A now-famous study of…

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U.K. Salt Reduction Drives Down Stroke and Heart Disease Deaths

The British government has successfully educated individuals about reducing their sodium consumption and has aggressively encouraged companies to market less-salty foods, the Center for Science in the Public Interest reported.

And according to the findings published in BMJ Open, those efforts are likely partly responsible for plummeting rates of heart attack and stroke deaths in the United Kingdom.

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It’s a shame that while the British government has actively prompted progress on the part of industry and consumers, our Food and Drug Administration dithers, waiting in vain for more than 40 years for companies to voluntarily cut salt.  It’s a strategy that has plainly failed, as Americans are still getting more than twice as much sodium as they should, mostly from processed and restaurant foods.

Almost four years ago the Institute of Medicine called on the FDA to set mandatory limits on the levels of sodium allowed in various categories of food.  Doing that would have been the single most effective (and inexpensive) thing the FDA could have done to save hundreds of thousands of lives and billions of health care dollars.  Halving Americans’ sodium intake could save 100,000 lives annually.  Because the Obama Administration hasn’t done anything, America is unnecessarily digging about 100,000 early graves every year, each to be filled with a heart attack or stroke victim.

I want to clarify that I am against government telling us we can’t have diet sodas over 16 ounces like in New York, but it seems the government can make some rules on healthy amounts of certain ingredients like salt and sugar which have proven harmful to us humans. As the CSPI release said, we are digging 100,000 early graves a year. Talk about Nero fiddling while Rome burns. We have the FDA fiddling while citizens who don’t pay attention to their health are dying at a terrible rate.

Salt consumption has been a subject of numerous posts in this blog. Here are a few:

How Much is Too Much Salt?

Some Sneaky Salt Statistics

Why is Walmart Cutting Sugar, Fat and Salt in its Foods?

Where Does All the Salt in our Diets Come From?

Tony

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Filed under aging, Center for Science in the Public Interest, heart, heart disease, heart problems, salt, sodium, stroke, Weight, weight control, weight loss

What is Gluten-Free? FDA Has an Answer

Before the rule there were no federal standards or definitions for the food industry to use in labeling products “gluten-free.” An estimated 5 percent of foods currently labeled “gluten-free” contain 20 ppm or more of gluten.

Less than two percent of us has celiac disease. Not everyone belongs on a gluten-free diet. Be sure to read Should you try a gluten-free diet?

Tony

Cooking with Kathy Man

People with celiac disease can now have confidence in the meaning of a “gluten-free” label on foods.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a final rule that defines what characteristics a food has to have to bear a label that proclaims it “gluten- free.” The rule also holds foods labeled “without gluten,” “free of gluten,” and “no gluten” to the same standard.

This rule has been eagerly awaited by advocates for people with celiac disease, who face potentially life-threatening illnesses if they eat the gluten found in breads, cakes, cereals, pastas and many other foods.

As one of the criteria for using the claim “gluten-free,” FDA is setting a gluten limit of less than 20 ppm (parts per million) in foods that carry this label. This is the lowest level that can be consistently detected in foods using valid scientific analytical tools. Also, most people with celiac disease…

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Shaking Up the Salt Scene; Thank You FDA

The Food and Drug Administration this week fired a major salvo in the ongoing battle to limit salt in processed foods, saying it plans to gradually cut salt levels in processed foods.

I say move faster. I know the food business says consumers will balk at foods with less salt because the taste will change. I say if the only thing selling your products to consumers is salt, you have a bigger problem than just worrying about the FDA.

Reputable health experts agree that Americans, on average, consume too much salt each day. It is a constant challenge for me, given the amount of food I eat away from home.

I welcome immediate reductions, not just gradualism. But that said, at least this is a step in the right direction and should spur food companies to do more on their own to preclude more draconian federal mandates.
John

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