B-vitamins + omega-3 --> less brain shrinkage

Two nutrients proven to stop your brain shrinking

By Jerome Burne & Patrick Holford, Food for the Brain

New research shows that the combination of B vitamins and omega-3 are a dynamic duo against dementia, stopping the brain shrinkage that is the hallmark of Alzheimer’s.
The research has found that giving older people with the first signs of cognitive impairment supplemental B vitamins (B6, B12 and folic acid) at higher levels than can be achieved through diet to those with sufficient omega-3 fats produced 73% less brain shrinkage in a year, compared to placebo. This reduction brought brain shrinkage down to the level found in those elderly with no cognitive decline…

The effect is greater than that of any drug treatment to date – with no adverse effects.” says Professor Smith. In contrast the recent trials of anti-amyloid drugs have reduced brain shrinkage by 2%. … [end quote]

This news has potentially dramatic Macroeconomic impact. The inexpensive treatment of B-vitamins plus eating fatty fish yield benefits far beyond the new Alzheimer’s drugs which are ineffective and so expensive that Medicare bumped up the charge for coverage based on potential demand from tens of millions of patients.



Good morning Wendy

years ago (like in the 90’s) I read an article about Acetyl L carnitine (ALCAR) in a journal. This study took lab rats and divided them into 3 groups - control, placebo and test. The control group was young rats, and the other two are old rats o/w self explanatory. They ran all 3 groups through a maze and the control group ran it faster than the other 2 groups. Then they started to give the placebo group the sweetener they added to the ALCAR and the test group got the sweetened ALCAR. When the rats ran the maze again, the group that was the test group (ALCAR+sweetener) ran the maze as fast as the control group, but the placebo group ran it same as they did in the first run. Then they sacrificed the rats and looked at the brains under an electron microscope. They noticed that the control rat brains and the test rat brains looked alike with healthy intracellular components, but the placebo rat brains had damage to intracellular components, brain cell shrinkage and they mentioned that the mitochondria looked especially damaged and suggested that old age and brain aging may be associated with intracellular breakdown of the components of the brain from improper nutrition. ALCAR is an over the counter nutriceutical. I have been taking 500mg since the 90/s every day along iwth an antioxidant alpha lipoic acid 200mg which was mentioned in the article. I added an article from NIH but I couldn’t find that original article…doc

L-Carnitine and Acetyl-L-carnitine Roles and Neuroprotection in Developing Brain - PubMed (nih.gov)


I’m going to throw out a caution on this, Bear in mind, I’m a programmer, not a doctor, not a nutritionalist. But 12 years ago I was put on a B6 supplement at 50mg per day by my neurologist. A year ago I was then taken off it. Why? New research pointing to that amount causing me more harm in one direction than it was helping me neurologically.


Yep B6 can be a problem for some people…even many people.

B12 not so much. Folic acid not so much of a problem. Rarely a problem.

Folic acid for some people has a side effect that is notable a loss of appetite. That could be very useful.

I am going to add B12 and folic acid but skip the B6 supplement.

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I started taking alpha lipoic acid after reading a book on brain health. Was taking 300mg, IIRC. Was also suffering from a documented case of carpel tunnel, wearing a wrist brace on both arms at night so that I could sleep through the night without being woken up by the pain. A couple of weeks after I started taking the ALA, I realized I had not experienced any pain from my carpel tunnel. I googled ALA’s impact on carpel tunnel and sure enough it was documented as having a positive impact on carpel tunnel and other nerve issues like sciatica. I increased my dose to the 900 mg suggested for carpel tunnel and have never worn my wrist braces since doing so around 2 years ago.

Will have to look into the Acetyl L Carnitine. Already take B vitamins and fish oil, on top of what we get in our diet.



I make my own special homemade Vitamin Water.

The ingredients:

  • 8 cups of water
  • 1 teaspoon of magnesium ascorbate powder
  • The yellow/orange powdery contents from 2 Nutricost Vitamin B complex capsules

I drink about one cup per day. Thus, my daily dosage consists of a quarter capsule of the Nutricost Vitamin B complex supplement and 500 mg of Vitamin C. I don’t drink this all at once - just a few ounces at a time a few times per day.

I choose this particular Vitamin B complex supplement because it has less Vitamin B3 relative to the other B vitamins. The Tolerable Upper Intake for B3 is 35 mg per day, just barely more than double the US RDA of 16 mg per day. Most B vitamin supplements contain enormous amounts of B3 even though it’s virtually impossible to be deficient in this nutrient.


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