Introducing myself

Newcomer introductions, personal anecdotes, caregiver issues, lab results, and n=1 experimentation.
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gena
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Introducing myself

Post by gena »

Hi, I’m new to knowing my apoE 3/4 status and what that means and also new to this incredible site. My 81 year old mother was formally diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia in December which brought me here. When she was first diagnosed with dementia five years ago, the neurologist said she had alcohol-induced dementia, so this new, more specific diagnosis was a change. Two weeks ago we received her apoE 3/3 results, and a week later mine revealed I’m a 3/4, which was actually a surprise as there is no one I’m aware of who has or had it in my family other than my mother. My 87 year old father does not have AD, though I obviously inherited my 4 from him. Neither of his parents lived past 70 and had no AD signs, so though heart disease was on his side, I never thought about AD. I am now taking a crash course on what I can do to take control and learning every day.
Thank you to each and every person who has posted book recommendations, research studies, personal stories, and labwork details and explanations over the past decade. There is so much here, and I am making my way through it and taking action. I just turned 60, and while I wish I realized my genetic risk years ago, I’m glad to know now so I can make changes where necessary.
Gena 3/4
TLS
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Re: Introducing myself

Post by TLS »

Welcome to the forum Gena and thank you for sharing your story!

While it may have been a surprise to find out you're APOE status, it is also empowering because you can do something about your lifestyle to protect yourself. That's very interesting to hear that your father didn't show any signs and also encouraging. I can relate. Until my mother and her many siblings reached their 70's I never would have expected to be dealing with Alzheimers. So, in some ways our generation has a leg up.
apoe 3/4
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gena
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Re: Introducing myself

Post by gena »

TLS wrote: Sat Jan 21, 2023 6:14 am Welcome to the forum Gena and thank you for sharing your story!

While it may have been a surprise to find out you're APOE status, it is also empowering because you can do something about your lifestyle to protect yourself. That's very interesting to hear that your father didn't show any signs and also encouraging. I can relate. Until my mother and her many siblings reached their 70's I never would have expected to be dealing with Alzheimers. So, in some ways our generation has a leg up.
TLS, thank you for the warm welcome! I'm very intrigued with my father's story. He stopped drinking completely at 48 years old, learned to manage stress via the AA program, had no sleep problems, exercised some, developed diabetes due to pancreas surgery so had to cut out most sugar, and married a woman who eats and cooks very healthy food. It all makes sense with the core areas we need to focus on.
Gena
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atlantisw
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Re: Introducing myself

Post by atlantisw »

Hi Gena,

Similar story happened to me.

Long story short, you might have other protective genes from your father's side. :D Human understanding is still limited wrt these genes, so I suggest carrying a light mind, which is proved to be beneficial :D
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gena
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Re: Introducing myself

Post by gena »

atlantisw wrote: Sun Jan 22, 2023 4:38 pm Hi Gena,

Similar story happened to me.

Long story short, you might have other protective genes from your father's side. :D Human understanding is still limited wrt these genes, so I suggest carrying a light mind, which is proved to be beneficial :D
Thanks for that reminder, Atlantis! I remember reading something like that in Stavia's primer, I believe. This gene is just one that we know about now, and there are undoubtedly many, many more that no one even knows about that affect the onset of or protection from AD.
Gena 3/4
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Re: Introducing myself

Post by Sunshine »

I am 73. About 10 years ago I learned I was APOE3/4. I thought it was a death sentence, and was depressed for days. Since around 2009, I began further developing an interest in nutrition, believing food eaten affects health. Internets allowed exploring, Around that time, my teenage child, because of digestive issues was recommended to discontinue eating gluten, and grains. I did so in support of her. Prior to then, with a spouse (APOE3/3) who is die hard vegetarian and still is (from a belief not nutrition perspective and is now diabetic}, we had many grains and legumes in our diet. I tried vegetarian for about 6 months in the mid 1990's, gained 60 pounds in that time, went back to eating animal protein and many veggies. I removed the legumes and grains, I lost all arthritic pain which I no longer have any, and was able to drop the very excess weight. My mother's family tended toward being "portly" ( my brother died of stroke or heart attack at age 63 insulin dependent uncontrolled diabetes and over 400 pounds at height 5'9"). I also carry a "fatso gene", which I have come to understand can set up for insulin resistance early and later diabetes (I was a 100 pound first grader). In 1956, my father had cerebral aneurysm which left him incapacitated for 25 years before he passed. Father's side of the family has many with "hardening of the arteries". I recently visited with a paternal cousin with full blown dementia in his early 60's I long believed heart disease would cause death in my father's family before dementia happened. Julie's recent post I read somewhere about her mother's, brain bleeds and Coronary artery disease struck home.
I came out of my funk of depression several months after knowing I was APOE3/4 when I became clear about epigenetic genes nutrition and lifestyle choices. In 2014 I began following the Wahl's Protocol paleo then paleo plus eating strategy red and reread her work. About 5 years ago I discovered the work of Dale Bredesen, read and reread his books. I came across this website about APOE 4 through following Dr Bredesen, I began perusing this website.
Currently I clean fast minimum 18 hours a day..up to 22 hours a day, and occasionally 40 hours. I try to keep my fats primarily olive oil, avocado, from seeds and nuts, limited coconut oil and fermented ghee (had to lower the saturated fats because of APOE 3/4). I am grain free most of the time, dairy free most of the time, legume free most of the time. I focus on vegetables as outlined in the Wahl's protocol (leafy greens, sulfured, and brightly colored). Blood tests in September Insulin 2.5 (has been as high as 15), HA1c 4.9, fasting 86, average glucose 89. Total cholesterol 204, HDL 67, Triglycerides 43,Vitamin B12 969, Vitamin D 74 ...been as low as 12, Inflammation markers have historically been slightly elevated. From Bredesens work, I think I may have mild leaky gut or gingivitis issues that are not totally resolved, or maybe the intermittent grain, dairy legumes cause mild inflammation. My blood/brain barrier from Cyrex lab tests indicate it is not leaky. Heavy metal toxin exposure is not an issue.
Anyway health is a proactive journey. I wish to age gracefully with my mental faculties intact.
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Re: Introducing myself

Post by Kmlseattle »

Sunshine wrote: Tue Jan 24, 2023 9:44 am I am 73. About 10 years ago I learned I was APOE3/4. I thought it was a death sentence, and was depressed for days.
...
Anyway health is a proactive journey. I wish to age gracefully with my mental faculties intact.
Welcome, Sunshine. Thank you for your informative post, You certainly are a great example of how dietary changes can positively influence your health. Your rest results are impressive, indeed. Since your diet is so great, I'm curious as to other lifestyle areas such as exercise, sleep and stress management. I'm guessing by your mentions of the work of Drs. Wahls and Bredesen, that you are aware of these, as well.

As a welcome intern, I'd like to make sure you're aware of all the resources this forum provides. First of all, the Primer offers accessible science background and prioritized sensible preventative measures. It is written by a member physician who carries two copies of the APOE-ε4 allele. Other good resources include the search engine on our site, PubMed and the internet, at large. In addition, the WIKI is a searchable document that has lots of information about many ApoE4 issues and treatments. Finally, the Our Stories page is a place to view the experiences and questions from other members and, if you want, a place for you to post your story, as well. Your personal experiences could be just the ticket for the success of another member!

Thanks again for your post. Please feel free to post additional information and/or questions.

Wishing you continued success!

Kathleen
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Re: Introducing myself

Post by Sunshine »

I am aware of the lifestyle issues. Regarding sleep, I have phone and other electronics out of the bedroom...at the other end of the house. I sleep between 7-9 hours per night and wake up rested. Sometimes I am mildly sleepy 1-2 hrs after breaking my fast...blood sugar drop. I walk 3 miles most days, outdoors in the morning for fresh air. I do yoga 3-5 times per week. I need to incorporate some weight bearing exercise. I do hike sometimes with family, bike ride with young grandkids teaching them the rules of the road. What is difficult is same aged friends are developing all sorts of health issues, and to date I have not. They are becoming more physically challenged. They run to their doctors often, have stints, diabetic, joint replacements. As of now, I have my yearly lab tests and wellness appointments, set goals for the year. I can reschedule sooner if problems arise. I take no prescription med other than thyroid which I have taken and monitored since age 6 (I am 73).
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Re: Introducing myself

Post by toxentine »

Hi sunshine,
May I ask why you limit your coconut oil? I’m new to all of this dieting for AD. I haven’t been diagnosed, however I took a 23 and me test and my results were that I have 2 of the apoe 4 genes. I’ve been researching every extra minute I have. I read that coconut oil was associated with helping reverse memory loss. I’ve been watching Dr. Berg and also read the first survivors of Alzheimer’s. I do have some of the key pathogens associated with Alzheimer’s. I have severe HSV-1 or cold sores, going to the dentist next week but I think I might be getting some gum disease even tho I brush regularly (I have inflamed gums often), I also have high cholesterol and am not overweight. My 23 and me test showed I’m prone to being insulin resistant but I don’t have diabetes. My brother has had it since he was in his 20’s. My mom is a diabetic and dad was as well. My grandma died of a heart attack and was diabetic, dad had open heart surgery for triple bypass in his early 50’s, my grandma died at 59. My dads sister, is 76 and is now in the mid stages if AD.
I have had 2 pretty bad head injuries in the past 15 years. Oh and one last thing on my mind is, I had my appendix and gallbladder removed 3 years ago and after surgery part of my memory was gone! My son and husband would bring up things we had done together or watched a movie together from earlier that year and I couldn’t remember at all! Still can’t remember it! Anyone have any comments on gallbladder removal and doing keto for health and slowing AD?
The good news (finally) I decided to start learning a new language which I’ve now been on a streak for 600 days and I’m also learning to play the Banjo for almost a year now. I need to incorporate some exercise into my life soon. My biggest task in life right now is caring for my elderly mother who has many health issues. She moved in with me over a year ago and we just came out of a terrible bout with not being able to walk. Anytime she gets sick with any virus or illness she can’t walk for an extended period of time. Thank you all for the comments, it feels nice to have found this site!
I’d love to hear from you guys:
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Re: Introducing myself

Post by Sunshine »

Hi.Toxentine. Wow many of your struggles are similar to mine, but I think I have been in this rodeo of addressing health issues through nutrition and lifestyle a bit longer. The short answer regarding APOE 4 is that, according to Dr. Terry Wahls (she has been a guest speaker for APOE4 groups), "APOE 4 gene impairs fat metabolism and increases inflammation in many of the inflammatory pathways." For me too much saturated fat made me feel greasy and sluggish, and it in hindsight jacked up my cholesterol. I did try ketosis through coconut and mct oils, increasing the saturated fat and it didn't feel right, and I struggled. What I have ended up doing is using more olive oil and fasting for ketosis. I feel great doing this. I think that the fasting time allows time for the fat to properly process in my body, and allows my insulin level to stay low. I have learned through trial and error what works for me. We can't forget, as I understand, our bodies need some saturated fat, but as APOE 4 carriers we cannot depend on saturated fat for ketosis as non carriers can. I adjust what I do depending on new research. Hope this helps
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