Is There a Link Between Alzheimer’s and Lyme Disease?

Link Between Alzheimer's and Lyme Disease

Lyme_Disease_AlzheimersOne of the many unsettling truths about Lyme disease is that it frequently makes its victim susceptible to other debilitating conditions including diabetes, cancer, and yes, even Alzheimer’s disease.

Restoration Healthcare joins other functional medicine professionals in its concerns about the connection between Lyme disease and Alzheimer’s, and we’re certain the science goes a long way in presenting the case that there is a correlation between these two devastating diseases.

First, let’s take a look at Lyme disease…

Before you assume that just because we live in Southern California, we’re immune to this deer tick-induced illness, consider this: While deer have indeed been pinpointed as transporters of such ticks, most Lyme disease victims are bitten by poppy seed-size ticks that reside on mice.

So while it’s true that most of Southern California’s urban landscape is bereft of Bambi, we have no shortage of house mice.

Truth is, there are no accurate means of assessing whether or not a patient has been infected with Lyme disease. Tests available today offer a 50 percent chance of accuracy. And that’s primarily because symptoms can look suspiciously familiar to such ailments as arthritis, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis and even lupus.

That’s due mostly to symptoms that include mental confusion and loss of memory — predominate neurological conditions that mirror those of Alzheimer’s. In addition, Lyme disease is known to attack the brain and nervous system.

We don’t want to get too technical, however…

Recent peer-reviewed research by Dr. Judith Miklossy, director of the International Alzheimer’s Research Center in Switzerland, suggests Borrelia (that’s a spirochetal bacterial infection that can eventually lead to dementia and is responsible for all cases of Lyme disease in the United States) has been shown in several studies to be linked to Alzheimer’s disease.

In fact, Borrelia is believed to promote chronic inflammation and cortical atrophy — degradation of the outer layer of the brain — and contribute to amyloid deposition (plaque deposits on the brain that are found in Alzheimer’s patients). In the book The End of Alzheimer’s, Dr. Miklossy is cited as saying bacteria might lead to cell death, neuro-degeneration and amyloid deposition in Alzheimer’s disease.

Further, research that was published last year in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease claims patients are 10 times more likely to have Alzheimer’s disease when there is a presence of a spirochetal infection.

The good news is…

The good news is that by acknowledging the connection between Lyme disease and Alzheimer’s, those suffering from Lyme disease may be able to prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s by eliminating these nasty infections.

As with most ailments, targeting disease with supplements is a major weapon in the medical arsenal. Among the suggested supplements for Lyme disease are those from fish oils, chia, hemp, flax and walnuts. The essential fatty acids found within Omega-3, in particular, have been found to lower inflammation and thus, reduce or even prevent symptoms of Alzheimer’s. Additional supplements might include magnesium and Vitamin D, as well as zinc and Vitamin K.

As important as supplements are in combating Lyme disease, what you put in your body is equally essential. It makes sense to avoid inflammatory foods as well as high-carb diets that wreak havoc on blood sugar and insulin levels.

Highly recommended are Paleo diets, which promote healthy proteins and fats, along with vegetables and fruit. And, as in the case with those suffering from Alzheimer’s, much attention must target keeping the brain alert and the social calendar full. Mental stimulation — whether it be reading, taking classes or playing chess with a competitor with equal or better skills — wards off decreasing brain cells and dementia.

Here at Restoration Healthcare, our own medical director, Dr. Sunny Raleigh, has years of experience in diagnosing and treating patients with Lyme disease. If you or someone you love is experiencing symptoms of dementia, lackluster energy or brain fog, contact our offices (949-535-2322) and set up an appointment.

Remember, Lyme disease — a chronic disease without a diagnosis — is the most commonly reported vector-borne disease in the United States. If diagnosed in its early stage, Lyme disease can be easily treated. But, delayed diagnoses can make treatment and recovery more difficult.