Big Pharma’s Failed Strategy for Beating Dementia

Over the years, Big Pharma’s strategy for treating dementia has failed miserably.

As a regular reader, you know they’ve tried all kinds of drugs, but none of them has reversed or stopped a single case of dementia.

You see, like any organ, your brain needs nutrients to work well. But most conventional doctors still don’t get that.

And once again, the so-called “respected” medical establishment has come out in full force against natural brain-boosting supplements. You may have heard them… Claims like “lack of evidence,” “not enough research,” or even “don’t waste your money” have flooded the media.

One of the latest attacks is based on a report primarily funded by the AARP – the American Association of Retired Persons. And it utterly slammed the use of brain-boosting supplements.1

Its conclusion was predictable and wrong: “There is no convincing evidence to recommend dietary supplements for brain health.”

Now, there are a lot of benefits to the AARP. But it’s important to remember that this organization isn’t just a lobby group for seniors.

It’s also in the health insurance business and offers discounts on Big Pharma meds.

At the same time, the report noted that 21 of the 27 “experts” who authored the study had potential conflicts of interest — some with significant financial ties to Big Pharma giants like Pfizer, Eli Lilly, and Novartis.

It would be hard to argue that this research and its conclusion weren’t biased.

But the report did admit there may be exceptions… Certain nutrients, the authors said grudgingly, could prove helpful in people with “deficiencies.”

They don’t seem to get those deficiencies often cause dementia and memory loss. It’s been known for years, for example, that brain health is affected by levels of nutrients and key brain chemicals.

You see, memories don’t simply disappear. And you can get them back – if you give your brain the nutrients it needs.

The best brain fuel I know of is an essential fatty acid called DAH, or docosahexaenoic acid. DHA is the main structural fat in your brain tissue. And it’s involved in the development and function of your central nervous system and the synapses in your brain.

It acts like a guardian in your brain.

As soon as it detects oxidative stress or other damage, it promptly produces a compound called neuroprotectin D1 (NPD1). It’s one of your body’s first defenses when brain cells are threatened.2

Studies show that NPD1 lowers inflammation in the hippocampus. That’s a seahorse-shaped area deep inside your brain. It’s called the “seat of memory.”3 In other words, it helps stop the damage that eats away at your memory function.

NPD1 also activates pro-survival genes in brain cells. At the same time, it suppresses pro-death genes.4

Not surprisingly, NPD1 levels have been found to be low in the hippocampus of patients with early-stage Alzheimer’s disease.

But you can turn that around by getting more DHA.

Animal studies show DHA supplements can improve memory by 12% in old mice.5 It can also restore brain cell growth and memory in mice with dementia.6 Mice given DHA were able to complete a maze test 15% faster. Plus, the mistakes they made in the maze were dramatically reduced.

Aim to get between 600 and 1,000 mg of DHA daily. I suggest taking a combination of calamari and krill oils. They’re more concentrated than fish oil and less toxic. And your body absorbs them better.

Supplement to bring memories back

DHA isn’t the only nutrient your brain needs. Here are two more I recommend…

    1. Increase acetylcholine with choline. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter that’s directly involved in memory. But levels decline with age. Our grandparents got the choline they needed from nature. The best sources are eggs, beef, and chicken liver. Sadly, we no longer eat these foods.
      Fortunately, you can rebuild your reserves by supplementing with CDP-choline. In an MIT study, 95 people took 1,000 mg of CDP-choline or a placebo for three months. The patients with poor memory made gains in their recall.7 At 2,000 mg daily, patients improved verbal memory. I recommend supplementing with 1,000 mg daily, but you can go up to 2,000 mg.
    2. Add this brain booster. Phosphatidylserine (PS) is a key building block for the billions of cells in your brain. In one study, 78 patients with cognitive decline were given either a PS supplement or a placebo. The supplement group experienced a significant memory improvement.8 Once again, the best foods for PS are organ meats. Other good sources include herring, tuna, and pasture-raised chicken. But it’s hard to get enough from your diet. I recommend taking 100 mg three times a day.

To Your Good Health,

Al Sears, MD

Al Sears, MD, CNS



1. Global Council on Brain Health. “The real deal on brain health supplements: GCBH recommendations on vitamins, minerals, and other dietary supplements.” 2019.
2. Bazan NG, et al. “Docosahexaenoic acid and its derivative neuroprotectin D1 display neuroprotective properties in the retina, brain, and central nervous system.” Nestle Nutr Inst Workshop Ser. 2013;77:121-131.
3. Orr SK, et al. “Unesterified docosahexaenoic acid is protective in neuroinflammation.” J Neurochem. 2013;127(3):378-393.
4. Asatryan A and Bazan NG. “Molecular mechanisms of signaling via the docosanoid neuroprotectin D1 for cellular homeostasis and neuroprotection.” J Biol Chem. 2017; 292(30):12390-12397.
5. Arsenault D, et al. “DHA improves cognition and prevents dysfunction of entorhinal cortex neurons in 3xTg-AD mice.” PLOS One. 2011;6(2):e17397.
6. Fiol-deRoque M, et al. “Cognitive recovery and restoration of cell proliferation in the dentate gyrus in the 5XFAD transgenic mice model of Alzheimer’s disease following 2-hydroxy-DHA treatment.” Biogerontology. 2013;14(6):763–775.
7. Alvarez X, et al. “Citicoline improves memory performance in elderly subjects.” Meth Find Exp Clin Pharmacol. 1997;19: 201-210.
8. Kato-Kataoka A, et al. “Soybean-derived phosphatidylserine improves memory function of the elderly Japanese subjects with memory complaints.” J Clin Biochem Nutr. 2010;47(3):246-55.