I couldn’t believe my eyes. But there it was in black and white in The Journal of the American Medical Association study on vitamin E and Alzheimer’s. An admission by the medical establishment that plain old vitamin E—one that you can pick up for mere pennies a day—works where a mainstream drug flat out fails!
A vitamin beating the socks off of a drug is not so surprising, of course. But a study that confirms it actually ever seeing the light of day—and in a major mainstream medical journal, no less—well, that’s just unheard of.
According to the study on vitamin E and Alzheimer’s published in a recent edition of JAMA, vitamin E can put the brakes on the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. This is HUGE news—big enough, in fact, that you may have even heard some rumblings about it in the mainstream press.
But what most of those reports failed to make clear is that the billion dollar dementia drug memantine failed miserably. Even worse, vitamin E’s apparent ability to fight off devastating Alzheimer’s symptoms was canceled out by the drug!
Dementia drug fizzled while E sizzled
When volunteers were given both vitamin E and memantine there was no improvement. In other words, they didn’t get the same exciting benefits as those lucky volunteers who got vitamin E alone.
A total of 613 veteran volunteers, mostly men, were divided into four groups. The first group was given a large dose of vitamin E, 2,000 I.U.’s, daily. The second group got the dementia drug memantine, and the third group got both the vitamin E and drug. The final group was given a placebo.
The researchers hoped that combining the vitamin with the drug would result in double the benefits. But they were shocked to find that this wasn’t the case.
And the bad news didn’t end there. While the veterans who got the vitamin E alone were enjoying the benefits of the vitamin—the coveted ability to perform daily functions longer—neither the group getting the drug alone, nor the group getting the combination, saw any benefits at all.
That’s right. Although the researchers didn’t bother to comment on it… and the press glossed right over it… the widely prescribed Alzheimer’s drug memantine appears to have destroyed the nutrient’s proven benefits!
So the drug is worse than useless; it actually appears to be detrimental.
Ah, but it gets even better… or perhaps I should say worse.
Researchers fail by using fake vitamin E
The clueless cretins performing the study not only failed to use a mixed tocopherol vitamin E, they didn’t even bother to use a NATURAL form of the vitamin! Yep, when you dig deeper into the study you will find that they actually admit to using synthetic d,l-alpha E.
We may never know what benefits were missed out on when they made this idiotic choice, but I’m willing to bet you dimes to doughnuts that they would have been tremendous. As I’ve explained before, not just any vitamin E will do.
Real vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant made up of eight distinct molecules, divided into two groups: alpha, beta, and delta tocopherols, and alpha, beta, and gamma tocotrienols. And although we don’t yet know a whole lot about each of the individual molecules, we do know that nature combined them together into these two distinct groups for a good reason.
You will find vitamin E in nuts, seeds, green leafy vegetables, and certain oils. But getting enough E from diet alone can be challenging. And getting the levels used in this study from food is, of course, likely impossible (more on that, including a caution, in just a moment).
Skip synthetics and go natural instead
When you choose a vitamin E supplement, pick a “mixed tocopherol” version. And be sure you’re getting a natural vitamin E. A couple of years ago on the Guide to Good Health blog I shared a super-simple trick for spotting a cheap synthetic. Click here to learn what it is (look under “Getting to know the vitamin E family”).
And now, let’s get back to the levels of vitamin E used in this Alzheimer’s study. I typically recommend a 400 I.U supplement of a natural mixed tocopherol vitamin E daily. I’ve always said higher amounts of the NATURAL version of the vitamin are perfectly safe and may be desirable for fighting certain diseases. And this study has even confirmed the safety and benefits of significantly higher dosages, despite using a poor synthetic version.
But if someone you care about is suffering from early Alzheimer’s or dementia, don’t try vitamin E therapy on your own. Instead, seek out the help of an experienced naturopathic doctor. Alzheimer’s is a complicated disease and a naturopath will be able to tailor a personalized treatment plan for your loved one, so that he will get the most benefits possible.