Alzheimer’s Treatment Success Using Coconut Oil?

By on May 24, 2016
could coconut oil be an effective alzheimer's treatment?

Alzheimer’s treatment has proven to be a spectacular failure, with few sufferers improving with any degree of significance. However, there is one effective treatment that has received almost no attention by the media and almost no doctors are using it despite the fact that it’s easy, cheap, and readily available.

If there were an effective treatment for Alzheimer’s disease, wouldn’t you want your doctor to tell you about it Fortunately, you don’t have to wait for your doctor to tell you about it, you can simply try it out and see if it helps.

What is this treatment? Surprisingly, it’s a relatively simple and straightforward treatment that involves simply adding coconut oil to your diet every day. While this is certainly not a miracle cure, it has shown some early promise in clinical trials, and with many people who have tried themselves.

Why coconut oil works

While there has been a clinical trial that has shown promise for the use of coconut oil in the treatment for Alzheimer’s disease, one case stands out because the test subject’s wife is a medical doctor who has been trying to get the word out about this simple treatment. But let’s go back for a moment and discuss why coconut oil works for Alzheimer’s disease. For anyone familiar with the Atkin’s diet for weight loss, it works by getting the dieter into a fat burning state called ketosis.

coconut-oil-alzheimers-treatment

Coconut oil acts in a similar way to help put someone into ketosis more easily than requiring them to be on the Atkin’s diet. Coconut oil can help produce ketones without the requirement of being on a strict diet. In Alzheimer’s disease, the brain has difficulty metabolizing sugar for energy, and it’s a well-documented fact that ketones can act as an alternative energy source for the brain. In fact ketones are an extremely efficient energy source.

An Alzheimer’s treatment success story

Dr. Mary Newport, the medical director of a neonatal intensive care unit in Florida, discovered coconut oil when she attempted and failed to get her husband into a clinical trial that was using coconut oil to induce ketosis in Alzheimer’s disease patients. She decided not to let this stop her and, after assessing the safety of coconut oil, used the clinical trial protocol to do a trial her own husband.

To her delight, her husband made significant improvement with this simple Alzheimer’s treatment and she became a proponent of using Coconut oil for Alzheimer’s, spreading the word through her blog entitled Coconut Ketones, through her book “Alzheimer’s Disease, What if There Was a Cure?” and through the medical case study done on her husband entitled A new way to produce hyperketonemia: use of ketone ester in a case of Alzheimer’s.

A company has even created a medical food called Axona that is simply a refined form of coconut oil called medium chain triglycerides. While this sounds exotic, bodybuilders and other health-conscious people have been using MCT oil for many years now. Fortunately for us, the makers of Axona  have done two clinical trials showing improvement in Alzheimer’s disease in those taking medium chain triglycerides.

Ketones… not just for Alzheimer’s

None of this is surprising, though and, in fact, ketogenesis has been used as an effective Treatment for seizures that are unresponsive to medication. This treatment has recently made a resurgence due to the efforts of movie director James Abrahams whose son had severe seizures that were completely cured by the use of ketogenesis. He set up the Charlie Foundation to help others learn about the benefits of ketosis for what are termed ‘intractable seizures’, and thanks to him, ketosis is becoming a legitimate treatment that is relieving the suffering of many children.

More recently, ketogenesis is being studied as a treatment for other brain diseases such as Parkinson’s and Amelotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, also called Lou Gherig’s Disease. It has even been touted, by some, as being helpful to improve concentration or to diminish brain fog, although there have been no formal studies done on these claims.

Isn’t this risky medical experimentation?

While this is being used as a seizure and  Alzheimer’s treatment, it’s really just a dietary intervention that helps to stave off neurologic problems, just like interventions with fish oils do, as was shown in this study entitled Omega-3 essential fatty acids modulate initiation and progression of neurodegenerative disease. It seems that healthy fats have some serious ability to protect the brain, so maybe it’s not so surprising that a generation of low fat dieters have caused massive increases in degenerative brain problems.

Even Axona calls itself a medical food and not a drug, although it’s a patented food derived from coconut oil, and similar to the ‘MCT oil’ that is widely available in health food stores. Coconut oil has been used for thousands of years as a cooking oil, and native populations in places like Hawaii have traditionally eat large amounts of coconut products for long periods of time.

Bodybuilders too, as mentioned earlier, have taken MCT oil in large doses daily for many years, as have children seizures who are doing a ketogenic diet as a medical treatment. So coconut oil seems to be an extremely safe dietary intervention. The main problem with taking coconut oil on a daily basis is that if too much is taken too quickly, it can cause diarrhea. This can be easily remedied by starting out with a small dose and working up to amounts that will cause ketosis.

All in all, there seems to be little downside of taking coconut oil or MCT oil in those who would like to improve their brain health. After all, it could be years or even decades before enough trials are completed for the medical profession to determine that there is sufficient evidence in order to prescribe this Alzheimer’s treatment for those suffering from these devastating brain disorders. In the meantime, there is plenty of evidence that it might work, and that it’s safe enough to be given to children for many years.

Much like the Mental Changes in B12 Deficiency, watching a loved one’s brain function decline when there is a cheap and safe possible treatment right at the health food store that has been used safely for many years, should be intolerable for family members, and should be abhorrent to insurance companies who will be paying for medical care and possibly institutional care for someone that might be able to stay at home and remain healthy with a few minor and inexpensive interventions that don’t even need a doctor to approve.

About Kerri Knox, RN

The author is a Registered Nurse and Functional Medicine Practitioner. With 20 years of experience in health care, she has the unique perspective of being solidly grounded in both Conventional Medicine and Alternative Medicine. She can help you to to find and repair the underlying causes of chronic illness, while empowering you to take charge of your own health. She is the owner and author of this blog and website.

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