The First Program to Prevent and Reverse Cognitive Decline: Dale Bredesen MD

  • Michael
  • June 10, 2018
  • Comments Off on The First Program to Prevent and Reverse Cognitive Decline: Dale Bredesen MD


  • ReCODE addresses the foundational causes of Alzheimer’s disease,
  • ReCODE is a protocol for improving brain function and explains how to optimize cognitive performance with biochemistry, sleep, exercise, stress reduction and diet
  • ReCODE stands for Reversal of Cognitive Decline.
  • This is a program custom-made to the individual based on the abnormal lab test values
  • It identifies 36 factors related to metabolism that have a significant influence on cognition
  • These are factors that traditional neurologists do not usually consider

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Alzheimer’s Disease is a Protective Mechanism from Three Specific Things

  • Inflammation
  • Deficiencies
  • Toxins


Functions of Amyloid Beta

  • Amyloid-beta is part of the inflammatory response and can function as an antimicrobial agent
  • It responds to inadequate levels of hormones, vitamins, nutrients, and other supportive (or trophic) factors by downsizing the more expendable synapses
  • It is also part of the protective response to toxin exposure


  • Amyloid is involved with inflammation in the brain


  • It has properties that destroy of prevent the growth of microorganisms


  • If certain variables are insufficient in the brain, amyloid beta reduces the amount of synapses connecting the neurons


  • When the brain is exposed to toxins, amyloid helps to protect the brain



Types of Alzheimer’s Disease

Type 1

  • “Inflammation” form of Alzheimer’s disease
  • This form of the disease is associated with one or two ApoE4 alleles
  • The ApoE4 gene is found in at least 25% of the U.S. population


Type 2

  • “Wasting” form of Alzheimer’s disease
  • This form of the disease is associated with one or two ApoE4 alleles
  • Lab results usually do not show any inflammation
  • Hormone levels are “off”
  • Synapses for the brain do not have supportive factors


Type 1.5

  • Mix of Type 1 and 2 forms of Alzheimer’s disease
  • There is increased inflammation and less supportive factors for the synapses
  • “glycotoxic” (sweet) form of Alzheimer’s disease
    • Blood sugar levels are much higher than normal
    • Insulin levels are much higher than normal

Type 3

  •  “toxic” form of Alzheimer’s disease
  • Created from exposure to toxins
  • Hormone levels are “off”
  • Zinc measures are below normal
  • Copper to zinc ratio is higher than normal
  • Signs of inflammation in the brain


Protocol for Improving Brain Function: Important Tests for Improving Cognitive Performance


  • Lab tests for homocysteine are used to show inflammation
  • It can also be used to show a loss of support factors for the synapses
  • Blood vessels and the brained can be harmed by excess homocysteine
    • The hippocampus part of the brain wastes away faster, the higher the homocysteine values are above 6
  • Supporting nutrients to lower homocysteine include
    • Vitamin B6, B12, Folate and Betaine


Vitamins B6, B12 and Folate

  • Supporting nutrients to lower homocysteine levels

Cell Resistance to Insulin


  • It is imperative to control insulin levels and blood sugar levels
    • Both significantly increase the chance of getting Alzheimer’s disease
  • The body was not built to consume and handle more than 15 grams of dietary sugars during any given day
  • Insulin can act as a signal to prevent death of neurons
  • An enzyme that degrades insulin is also involved with degrading amyloid beta
    • If insulin it too high, this enzyme focus on degrading insulin and not amyloid plaques
  • Glucose can also latch onto proteins in the body
    • Proteins functions are either stopped or reduced



Inflammatory Responses

  • Multiple research papers have shown that there is evidence between inflammation in the body and Alzheimer’s disease
  • Key measures of inflammation
    • High Sensitivity C-Reactive Protein
    • Ratio of albumin to globulin
    • Ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3
    • Interleukin-6 (IL-6) and Tumor Necrosis Factor Alpha (TNFa)
  • Multiple research papers have shown that there is evidence between inflammation in the body and Alzheimer’s disease


Vitamin D

  • Turns on genes that are essential for forming and preserving brain synapses
  • Vitamin D can provide a stimulus to genes so that the genes form and preserve the synapses in the brain



  • Hormones are necessary to optimize cognitive function
  • The word hormone means “to impel or set in motion” in Greek
  • Thyroid Status
    • To improve cognitive function, it is important to optimize thyroid hormones
    • Lab results for Alzheimer’s patients often show that thyroid levels are “off”
  • Estrogen and Progesterone
    • Estrogen activates an enzyme that support synapses in the brain
    • There is also a connection between brain fog and memory issues with the percentage of estradiol to progesterone
  • Testosterone
    • Helps to sustain neurons
  • Cortisol
    • If cortisol levels get too high, it can harm neurons
    • Research has shown that if a significant amount of cortisol is reduced in a short amount of time it can damage the neurons in the hippocampus
  • Pregnenolone
    • Stress hormones and sex hormones come from pregnenolone
    • Pregnenolone helps with memory functions
    • It also helps to protect the brain
  • DHEA
    • DHEA is a neurosteroid
    • It supports the way the body responds to stress



  • Scientific research has associated dementia with
    • Too much copper
    • Too little zinc
  • When zinc levels are low it increases the body’s sensitivity to toxins
  • Zinc is involved with creating insulin , storing insulin and the release of insulin
  • When zinc is lacking it influences the signaling of insulin
  • Low levels of zinc can cause autoantibodies to rise
    • This process changes the neurotransmitter signaling and hormone signaling
  • Magnesium
  • Magnesium is necessary for optimal brain cell function
    • Cognition improves with magnesium threonate.
    • Magnesium threonate is the best form of magnesium to increase magnesium levels in the brain
  • Selenium and Glutathione
    • Selenium and glutathione are antioxidants
    • Glutathione helps to prevent inflammation and toxin buildup
    • Selenium helps to “restart” glutathione
    • Research has shown a relationship between low selenium levels and cognitive decline
  • The body responds to mercury by creating amyloid-beta plaques and neurofibrillary tangles
  • Research has also shown that cognitive decline can be a result of Arsenic, cadmium and lead



  • It is believed that sleep cleans the brain from cellular by-products
  • Cellular autophagy happens during sleep. This is like recycling for the cells



  • Cell membranes are made of cholesterol
  • Research has shown that brain shrinkage can happen when cholesterol levels are lowered below 150


Vitamin E

  • Safeguards the membranes of the cells
  • Research has shown that Vitamin E helps to reduce cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s patients


Vitamin B1

  • Thiamine is utilized by the brain for memory processes
  • Certain foods have enzymes that damage thiamin


Gut Permeability

  • Zonulin is a factor in gut permeability
  • Leaky gut can cause inflammation throughout the body
  • This inflammation is a result of an immune response
  • Autoimmune conditions can be a by-product of this immune response
  • There is a leaky gut test available
    • It tests for two different sugars in the blood stream
      • One type of sugar, called mannitol normally reaches the blood stream
      • While the other sugar is not supposed to reach the blood, this sugar is called lactulose
      • If the gut has larger holes than normal, the lactulose will go through


Blood Brain Barrier Permeability

  • The blood brain barrier separates the blood flowing in the body from the brain tissue
  • It is created from cells that line the interior surface of the blood vessels
  • If the blood brain barrier is permeable it can cause pathogens to enter
    • People with Alzheimer’s disease have had gingivitis bacteria and fungal signatures in their brains
      • One study showed that some people with a certain type of fungal signature in their brains were less likely to get Alzheimer’s.
  • Research has also shown that the herpes simplex virus lives for years in the nerve cells connecting the brain
  • After someone is infected with syphilis bacteria, the pathogen can survive in the body for decades
    • Syphilis has been shown by research to be a cause of dementia


  • Pathogens and microscopic organisms can access the brain though many different routes.
    • Microorganisms can reach the brain though the nose and sinus passages
    • They can access the brain through the eyes
    • And also though the gut endothelial cells


Gluten Intolerance

  • Gluten can influence the way that zonulin controls the gut barrier



  • The body can confuse proteins in the brain with a foreign substance. This results in auto antibodies to damaging the brain



  • Research has shown that mold toxins can cause cognitive problems and even Alzheimer’s disease
  • Mycotoxins can lead to chronic inflammatory response syndrome
  • Statins can cause problems with synapse processes


Mitochondria Processes

  • Mitochondria creates ATP from combining food and oxygen.
    • ATP is the energy that all cells use
  • Are descendants of bacteria that invaded our cells over a billion years ago taking up long term residence
  • There is a theory that mitochondria were once bacteria. They look a lot like bacteria. And the mitochondria invaded our cells and treated the cells like a Petri dish. Then learned to coevolve with us
  • The Greek word for mitochondria is “little granular thread”


  • The  Body mass index range should be between 18 and 25 to improve brain function


Computer Programs to Test Cognitive Performance

  • CNS Vital Signs
  • BrainHQ
  • Dakim
  • Lumosity
  • Cogstate
  • Posit science


Protocol For Improving Brain Function: Diet

  • Ketogenic diet called the Ketoflex 12/3
  • The flex in ketoflex refers to a flexitarian diet
    • This means consuming a lot of nonstarchy vegetables
  • The 12/3 part refers to fasting times
    • “12” refers to 12 hours between dinner and the next meal
  • “3” refers to the minimum amount of time between the end of dinner and bedtime
  • Most of the foods you consume should have a glycemic index of 35 of lower



Protocol For Improving Brain Function: Supplements

  • Acetyl L Carnitine
  • B12/Folate Combination
  • Citicoline
  • Niotinamide Riboside
  • Omega 3
  • Panthothenic acid
  • PQQ
  • Resveratrol
  • Ubiquinol
  • Vitamin B1
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin K2
  • Whole coffee fruit extract


These Supplements Support Synapse Connections

  • Ashwagandha Bacopa
  • Gotu Kola
  • Guggul
  • Lions Mane
  • Rhodiola
  • Skull cap
  • Triphala