APOE4/4 makes it to age 86!

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AnnieV
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APOE4/4 makes it to age 86!

Post by AnnieV »

This is my first posting.

My mom is APOE4/4 and has made it to 86. Thanks to prayer and Dr. Bredesen's book that we've executed with great detail and precision.

I look forward to explaining all I have learned, researched, and tested in detail that works.
AnnieV
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Re: APOE4/4 makes it to age 86!

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Her image below.
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Julie G
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Re: APOE4/4 makes it to age 86!

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Thank you for sharing, AnnieV! Congrats to you and your mom on the dedication. I assume that her cognition is still strong? That's amazing. I'm sure many would like to hear the details of her routine.
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Re: APOE4/4 makes it to age 86!

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AnnieV wrote: Wed Mar 20, 2024 10:40 am This is my first posting.

My mom is APOE4/4 and has made it to 86. Thanks to prayer and Dr. Bredesen's book that we've executed with great detail and precision.

I look forward to explaining all I have learned, researched, and tested in detail that works.
Hi AnnieV-

Welcome to the Forum! You've found a compassionate and supportive community here, and resource with a wealth of information.

Thank you for sharing a photo of your beloved mom, so we can put a face behind your story. How encouraging and inspiring to hear about your mom’s longevity with ApoE4/4! Based on your posts, it sounds like you have been a student of the Bredesen protocol and have had a positive experience - we would love to hear more about you and your mom’s story - what you’ve learned and found to be the most helpful and effective.

It also sounds like you have leaned on your faith and spirituality as well, through this journey. Personally, prayer has gotten me through the toughest of times in my life and my faith has helped me move mountains 😊

As a Support Team Intern, I'm happy to share several tools & resources to help you get the most out of your experience here, if you haven’t come across them already. The Primer is a detailed and informative resource written by a practicing M.D. with ApoE4/4. It includes information about the biochemistry of the ApoE4 gene and offers a variety of research-based prevention strategies.

Some helpful tips to navigate the site include the How-To Guide. It includes topics such as navigating the forum, private messaging, and searching. One great tip is using the quote (") button when replying to a post. Using the button will automatically alert the member of your response.

Wiki Main Page contains a wealth of information.

If you are interested in learning more about other members check out Our Stories.

Again, I am so glad you joined our forum. Stay positive and curious. Please feel free to reach out anytime.

Warmly,
Helen
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AnnieV
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Re: APOE4/4 makes it to age 86!

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Her cognition is intact, yes. That's the most amazing part. She can still answer direct Yes/No questions with full comprehension even if her speech is severely impaired, limited. That's not supposed to happen for APOE4/4 people at age 86, they are supposed to be “gone” by now. I will have to find the exact NIH report that tracked 62 APOE4/4 people over their lifetime but my recollection was that of the 62 people tracked (male and female) only 1 of them lived to age 86, that none of that study’s patients lived beyond 86. So, she is living on “blessed time.” (I am under no delusions. Physically though my mom has notably declined in just the last year. She needs assistance to walk now, cannot balance on her own. That started after she turned 85.)

I waited to post on the site until now, I wanted her to make it to 86. I've been caring for my mom for about 10 years full time with a brother who alternates with me. I've devoured many books (Dr. Bredesen's being the best) and analyzed (while noting) thousands of NIH reports while doing extensive blood tests on my mom and me (obviously I have an APOE4 allele) while adjusting habits accordingly.

When my brother and I started caring for her full time in 2014 she was on blood pressure and cholesterol medication. After less than 6 months we succeeded in normalizing (and have stayed normal the last 10 years) both of those irregularities with proper diet and “fasting”. (“fasting” is an imprecise term, it’s a media term that falsely implies a non-natural deviation. The better, more accurate term would be something like CRC--Circadian Rhythm Consumption that I think is more accurate, more reflective of what human cultures have done for thousands of years because they understood the inherent health benefits). The only medication she’s on is Aricept/Donepezil but that too is reduced because the threat of “myoclonic jerks”/muscle spasms are now providing greater downside potential than realized upside benefit. There's been zero observed loss of cognitive function from the gradual reduction over the last 6 months.

Per Dr. Bredesen, other research, testing, and observation these 4 key practice appear successful, sound, and inherently preventative (and reversing) for at least my mom:

1. Like Hippocrates says, "first do no harm" so consume only whole real foods. Eliminate all artificial, chemical, corrupted processed foods. Do both as a LIFESTYLE HABIT. The consumption of corrupted foods must be removed completely, just like Dr. Bredesen shows. Consuming only whole real foods restores and retains health. Only real food (and drink) is aligned with the "body's owner's manual". Just like your car owner's manual, one must only use the fuel the manufacture (God/nature) specifies, anything except what the maker specifies voids the body’s warranty…(Yes, one can “cheat” by consuming a junk product once in a while. Personally, I have defined “once in a while” as no more than once a month. Many are shocked to see how lousy they can feel after a “cheat” though so that’s often enough of a deterrent to not return to a lifestyle habit of consuming garbage foods and drinks which are pretty much the center 4 aisles of most commercial grocery stores). This is how human beings are designed to eat and drink from inception up until roughly the Industrial Revolution, about 1870. Post Industrial Revolution consumables have become increasingly corrupted, a trend that has only accelerated with each passing decade, a trend that is destroying human health.

2. Per Dr. Bredesen mandate for APOE4s, limit all consumption to a 14 hour window. There’s a reason that’s at the top of his list, it’s that important. That change alone dropped my mom’s (and mine) cholesterol VLDL and triglycerides through the floor. The documented results are shockingly good on those two key cholesterol parameters. In fact, many things seemed to normalize when doing CRC as a life habit, including weight, blood pressure, blood cholesterol, blood sugar, and hormones. Plus, we feel and sleep better.

3. Even though he emphasizes Vitamin D deficiency is strongly correlated to cognitive decline I sense even Dr. Bredesen might be understating the importance of Vitamin D. Apparently supplementing vitamin D is necessary in some cases but it appears the best way to obtain Vitamin D is via the sun itself. I try to get exposure of just 20 minutes a day, at midday for UVB rays, but I live at a more southern latitude than many other probably. Unfortunately, though it appears sub-optimal gut health might impair proper Vitamin D synthesis for many people. So, the key is to repair the gut (again, a main Dr. Bredesen theme) to enable that natural Vitamin D synthesis and that leads to the last main point on fermented foods.

4. Hippocrates says, “all disease starts in the gut”. Accordingly, we consume real, fermented foods daily which directly improve gut health. Dr. Bredesen mentions fermented foods but in my opinion and personal experience this element is understated in his book. In my view the daily consumption of a few fermented foods, namely fermented milk products (with real/raw dairy, NOT commercial store dairy) is the biggest game changer for my mom that my brother and I have introduced in the entire care regimen over 10 years. I wish I knew and consumed real/raw fermented dairy years ago, not just starting as habit the last 2-3 years. It’s made a world of difference. We can see the difference in my mom’s eyes alone—there’s never a vacant look about her now (when there was most often before) which is most remarkable. She has more emotions, smiles more, and laughs more (seemingly understands more). My brother and I too feel the difference ourselves too, we both kind of feel like we’re thirty years younger, that's not an exaggeration. (Note: it does no good to consume the fermented foods and real foods in general if one is still consuming things like artificial sweeteners that destroy health gut bacteria. See Rule 1….)

While this may sound a little radical, I don’t think it’s entirely accurate to say “APOE4 is a genetic predisposition to Alzheimer’s”. I allege that because APOE4 is God’s/nature’s original design (per Dr. Bredesen diagram on page 101) for the entire 7 million years of human evolution through the present. Thus, I think it’s maybe more accurate to state, “APOE4 is less adaptable to modern consumption habits (post Industrial Revolution) than other APOE variants”. By more accurately stating what appears to be so, the benefit readers can take away is that ALZ truly is far more a function of choice/habit than it is any sort of predestination.

I have much more to write about from specific ALZ NIH reports (like the "Nigerian Paradox"), to “Blue Zones", to countries ranked by ALZ rates, etc. that may help some people. From observation, research, testing, and my own sense of greatly improved wellbeing I fully share Dr. Bredesen’s belief ALZ is a modern caused disease that’s fully preventable and even reversible. Everyone should stay optimistic but even more so, stay disciplined. I’d recommend readers not only read the Bredesen book but analyze it and test it for themselves. My copy is tabbed and handwritten noted extensively. Take it bit by bit, don’t be intimidated, just make changes slowly but surely.
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Re: APOE4/4 makes it to age 86!

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Her cognition is intact, yes. That's the most amazing part. She can still answer direct Yes/No questions with full comprehension even if her speech is severely impaired, limited. That's not supposed to happen for APOE4/4 people at age 86, they are supposed to be “gone” by now.
Tell us more about the speech deficit. Have you tracked down the root cause of that? Also, has she ever done any formal cognitive testing, a MoCA, etc?

You've clearly done an amazing job helping your mom to optimize her health and thought deeply about many of these strategies. I look forward to learning more.
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Re: APOE4/4 makes it to age 86!

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As I read, understand about aphasia and dysarthria, these are "two distinct communication disorders that affect speech and language in different ways. Dysarthria is a motor speech disorder that affects the muscles used for speech, while aphasia is a language disorder that affects the ability to understand and use language." She demonstrates dysarthia more than aphasia but both are likely at play. Supporting a thesis for more dysarthia over aphasia is her (a) muscle spasms in general and (b) the almost chronic teeth grinding/bruxism, (more like up and down chattering than side-to-side grinding). Bruxism is characteristic of very late stage ALZ which is consistent with her being on Aricept for about 8 years now.

She was deemed "un-testable" for cognitive testing when we brought her in a few years ago. (I will emphasize again, the single biggest discernible change/improvement we made in her consumption routine was the daily introduction of fermented milk products made from real/raw milk, starting at age 84. And we have done many other things before and still do as habit but none of those other things has made that big of a visible difference as the fermented milks, one that's observed by many people not just me).
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Re: APOE4/4 makes it to age 86!

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As I read, understand about aphasia and dysarthria, these are "two distinct communication disorders that affect speech and language in different ways. Dysarthria is a motor speech disorder that affects the muscles used for speech, while aphasia is a language disorder that affects the ability to understand and use language." She demonstrates dysarthia more than aphasia but both are likely at play. Supporting a thesis for more dysarthia over aphasia is her (a) muscle spasms in general and (b) the almost chronic teeth grinding/bruxism, (more like up and down chattering than side-to-side grinding). Bruxism is characteristic of very late stage ALZ which is consistent with her being on Aricept for about 8 years now.
I'm curious if she's had a recent MRI of her brain. My mother (almost 86) had a hemorrhagic stroke, likely cerebral amyloid angiopathy (which primarily affects E4s, especially homozygotes) about a year and a half ago that left her with aphasia and moderate cognitive decline. But her neurologist was started by the multiple prior bleeds. Given that your mom is a 4/4, I wonder about bleeding (or other damage) to her temporal lobes. Left temporal damage disturb recognition of words. Right temporal damage can cause a loss of inhibition of talking. Just wondered if you'd ever explored this avenue.
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Re: APOE4/4 makes it to age 86!

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Stroke, CVD, are like AD with respect to "blood flow" issues. There's no evidence my mom has ever had a stroke per dr. visits, tests, observations. Yes, my mom had an MRI about 3 years ago. Neurologist refused to grant another, newer scan with my suggestions as to what to look for specifically (same neurologist who told me they don't test for APOE status, proving to me they are not problem solvers but just pill pushers). The first MRI did not note any observable clues, things looked "normal" for the most part, but with noted degradation to the hippocampus. I can only suspect my mom suffers more from BBB disruption (causing the cognitive decline) than from A/T plaques. Just a suspicion but that suspicion is based on the chronically high homocysteine (the only real parameter that stood out clearly as being abnormal in blood tests, and one consistent with Dr. Bredesen's book that results in hippocampus degradation) that I discovered about 6 years ago. That high Hcy itself degraded the hippocampus and accounts for the behavioral results we see to date. That said, over the last 2 years my mom has actually improved cognitively while her Hcy has dropped more than 50% of what it once was so it appears there has been some BBB healing/improvement. That's just my speculation from observation. Notably, that Hcy drop was ENTIRELY attributed (no other changes were made) to the daily routine of real/raw fermented milk products that the NIH also shows enables the body to produce its own folate (via the fermented milks' lactic acid bacteria) which neutralizes the Hcy. I proved that with my mom and myself. 4 blood tests over the last year showing consistent results. That's why I emphasize to readers why the real/raw fermented milks are so vital, that's an unstated key to naturally preventing ALZ (per my testing and observation only though). Remember, fermented milks is what humans consumed for tens of thousands of years until the Industrial Revolution, starting circa late 1800s. That's about when we started to corrupt milk in two main ways--pasteurization and homogenization. When did ALZ get formally discovered? 1907. Coincidence?! I don't think so. And as consumption of real/raw milk, fermented or not, has declined over the last 100 years as populations became less rural and more urbanized so too ALZ rates have risen in time, in relation to that demographic trend. Another "coincidence"?! I don't think so. I am not alleging the dual-corruption of milk post Industrial Revolution is the single cause of insidious cognitive decline and ALZ but I strongly suspect it is one of the primary causes (especially the homogenization process). That strong suspicion is not just supported many NIH reports but is also supported in 3 other, separate research paths that point to that same hypothesis.
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Re: APOE4/4 makes it to age 86!

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AnnieV wrote:Bruxism is characteristic of very late stage ALZ which is consistent with her being on Aricept for about 8 years now. She was deemed "un-testable" for cognitive testing when we brought her in a few years ago.
Julie G wrote: Fri Mar 22, 2024 8:31 amI'm curious if she's had a recent MRI of her brain...Given that your mom is a 4/4, I wonder about bleeding (or other damage) to her temporal lobes. Left temporal damage disturb recognition of words. Right temporal damage can cause a loss of inhibition of talking. Just wondered if you'd ever explored this avenue.
Annie, I'm guessing your mother is like my mom and her 4 older sisters, who all lived with Alzheimer's and probably vascular dementia for many years to 86 and older with at least one copy of ApoE4. They were wonderful women who had many cognitive and emotional strengths from being Depression and WWI era kids--strong, fun-loving and not willing to give up the fight. Julie's mom is probably the same way--since she raised a daughter with those strengths!

I've had almost a dozen MRIs as part of clinical research trials. My personal advice would be to not have your mother undergo that at this point. It involves incredibly loud, jarring, diverse, repetitive noises for 20-30 minutes, during which you have to be secured with a helmet-type device that has slats that go over your face, have ear plugs (that do little), and lie completely still-something that would be impossible given your mom's motor difficulty.

It sounds like you've discovered a great way to phrase Yes/No questions so she can communicate. I used to work with assistive technology specialists who were amazing at using picture boards, yes/no questions and sometimes miniature objects to help children with brain injuries and dysphagia or aphasia communicate. Have you found any other strategies to help her make her needs and wants known that you can share? I wonder if, like my mother and aunts, she still values seeing children, flowers, music etc. and looking at photos of herself and family members when they were young. With the cat sweater she was wearing, maybe she would enjoy a big furry stuffed cat that purrs--I hear some are very lifelike!

Nancy
4/4 and still an optimist!
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