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papadoc,
Please refer to the websites included above, for starters.
I offered far more information than you just reduced it to in your comment--I know there are some days my brain fals to be helpful , but you seem to have totally missed any salient points made, above, in posting.
I wish you well.
If you wish to go back to the oldest data on turmeric, that is contained in the Vedic Texts, the oldest copies are about 5000 yers old. I do not have those on file here.
Feel free to look them up, same as I have done for decades,and make use of them, until becoming comfortable with the information.
I offered a place to start looking, above posted.
I wish you well.
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Chimonger, please name just one of the studies you talked about. Or one scientific claim that it helps. I'm telling people to look for facts, and examine the evidence and see if the conclusion is supported by the facts. The only thing you've offered is your opinion and that it must be good because it tastes yummy.
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Other triggers can cause dementia-like behaviors, such as malnutrition, other illnesses, toxic exposures, and brain injuries, for instance.
So while India [for instance] may not have the high proportion of elders as the USA, who may likely get dementias, they might have dementias from other causes, in younger populations.

As for testing agencies and sites to find information, you could start here:
some pages for herbals:
http://www.herbsociety.org.uk/mh-legislation.htm
http://www.ema.europa.eu/ema/index.jsp?curl=pages/regulation/general/general_content_000365.jsp&mid=WC0b01ac0580029569
http://www.mhra.gov.uk/#page=DynamicListMedicines
References specifically for turmeric:
http://www.emea.europa.eu/ema/index.jsp?curl=search.jsp&q=turmeric&btnG=Search&mid=WC0b01ac05800268ad

There are loads of references for herbals. There are schools for learning it, such as Bastyr University in WA State. [one of the only alternative medicine universities to garner Federal funding for research on it]

One tricky part is, OLD references can have data that new references have lost/omitted. Old references can contain some "snake-oil" data, as well--or wording that baffles modern knowledge. One has to familiarize with herb referrences, various authors, and do some work with those herbs, to get a clearer gist of the herbs' more reliable uses. Also, understand how the modern market works relative to herbs and nutritionals--it is pretty scathing. Modern methods of processing and using herbs can screw the ability of the body to use the natural ingredient one is after. Our ancient predecessors, who actually studied and practiced old forms of medicine, more often than not knew very well how to do it. Bad stuff happens when those with an urge to profit, and not much knowledge, gets their mitts into it.
[[I'd like a dollar for every time someone has said "It's perfectly safe, because it's only an herb" or, "nothing can go wrong, because it's all natural"...etc.]]

Some is so simple, its almost brainless to use it. Lots of it really does need qualifications to use. How much qualifications, is a question that has yet to be figured out.

Numerous Docs take a short-course of Acupuncture at a University, for instance, then promote themselves as acupuncturists ...which might be good for some quickie things, but not good enuf for things like anesthesia. "Shake'n'bake" 'acupuncturists' can do good, but have mixed results, and lots of failures, depending on how well they paid attention to their short classes. To get licensed as a Chinese medical Doctor, in the USA, means attending one of few schools for it, AFTER they have attained their REGULAR Doctors' credentials....Chinese Medical School takes another 4 + years.
Same for herbalists.
One warning that fairly goes across the board, that has regulatory agencies in fits, is unscrupulous vendors who pervert traditional "patent medicines"
[herbals known and safe for many centuries or longer], and adulterated these with pharmaceutical drugs NOT listed on the labels, so none know how much they are getting of what, nor how to gauge how those might interact with whatever else one is taking.

THAT has caused problems in credibility for herbal medicine, as have those who keep repeating that herbals [or other supplements, etc.] are all natural so do not cause harm.

...Just for instances...
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In India, 5.5% of the population is over age 65.
In the US, 13.1% of the population is over age 65.

Which country would you expect to have more age-related disease (such as dementia)?
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Here is a site sponsored by the US National Institute of Health, with information about health uses of this spice:
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/662.html

Chimonger, can you provide the name of the strict European testing agency, so those of us interested can find those studies, too?
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papadoc, your post reminded me of a statistic I once read that showed a strong correlation between the number of colored televisions in a country and the number of heart attacks. Wow! Colored televisions cause heart attacks! Well, of course not. Even though those two measurements showed a strong correlation, there was no direct causal relationship. Having heart attacks did not increase the ownership of tvs, and tv ownership did not cause heart attacks. At that time there might have been an indirect relationship in that countries where citizens could afford colored televisions in large numbers may have had more citizens with sedentary jobs which in turn might have meant less exercise.

Just because two things happen together does not mean one causes the other.
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papadoc,
Turmeric has been used and studied a long time.
One of the strictest testing agencies is that in Europe.

Not even turmeric is a "miracle cure for Alzheimers",
but it helps, and does not harm,
compared to the levels of harm virtually all pharmaceuticals are capable of..

It might turn out to lean heavily towards genetics [although, if one traces genetics around the planet over time, more are related to India and Africa, than would like to know].

It could also be in the Epigenomics field, relative to certain levels of starvation triggering certain genetic switches.

But PLEASE do not make it sound as if it might as well be phases of the moon.
It is FAR more researched than that, and not only on populations from the Indian Subcontinent.

...AND, it tastes good in food!
;-)
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When the food is pure, the whole nature becomes pure; when the nature becomes pure, the memory becomes firm; and when a man is in possession of a firm memory, all the ties are severed." ( No Alzheimer's)
Chhandogya Upanishad, VII-xxvi-2)
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Just because people of a given culture use tumeric and have a low incidence of Alz, does not mean these two are related. It well could be related, but so could a million other things. The people of India have many things that they do differently from other cultures, and there are also different genetics that could be involved.

Tumeric may well be a miracle cure for Alzheimer's, and if it is, there will be medical evidence to suggest that. However, simply pointing to the existence of one of many given ingredients and saying THAT is cause for the low rates of Alz is irresponsible. Given an hour, I could come up with 50 thing that Indians use in larger quantities, and it still just might turn out to be genetics.
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No spice or supplement is going to work if you are taking prescribed drugs that are causing the memory loss. Stop taking the drugs that are causing the memory loss. I know that cholesterol-lowering drugs are famous for causing memory loss and no one benefits from its use except for a small number of middle aged men. After you stop the drugs, then the natural stuff like turmeric and coconut oil will help to heal the brain.
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bhattathiri,
Thank you! Well-stated!
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Turmeric ha got a quality of removing the poisonous contents in foodstuff. Turmeric is used extensively in the Indian systems of medicine (Ayurveda, Unani, and Siddha). It is used as a carminative and stomachic in the treatment of digestive disorders such as flatulence, bloating, and appetite loss. Turmeric is used internally as boiled powder, fresh juice, and confection and externally as paste, oil, ointment, and lotion. It is also applied topically for ulcers, wounds, eczema, and inflammations. In both the Ayurvedic and Siddha systems of medicine, a turmeric paste is used topically to treat ulcers and scabies.

Turmeric, with its antibacterial action, prevents bacterial infections on wounds. Turmeric also has a long history of use for its anti-inflammatory and antiarthritic effects. As in India, it is used in China, Japan, and Korea for a range of indications including, Amenorrhea. Turmeric has been investigated for its cholagogous influence on the secretion of bile, pancreatic, and gastric juices. It is currently being evaluated for its anticarcinogenic and antimutagenic properties. daily use of turmeric can increase our resistance power to any disease.
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Good oils, turmeric, and other good stuff, are helpful.
However, they need to be used in amounts /doses that can actually make that difference.
THAT is a huge area of variability.

One Doc at a nursing home I worked, prescribed "CoQ10 10 mg. per day", for a patient who had MANY cardiovascular problems, was elderly, frail, and already taking a boatload of other prescriptions.
I asked him why such a token dose?
He answered: "Because it is costly; why make the family pay for something like that?"
The patient was over 80, frail, and her medical conditions well-advanced.
The likelihood that regular, large doses of CoQ10 would reverse all that, was unlikely.
The Doc was minding the cost: benefit ratio, and opting to Rx the token dose, still complying with request of family that their parent get some.

A medically meaningful dose of DHA Omega3 fish oil is more like 4 to 8 large capsules daily. THAT usually gets a significant lowering of bad cholesterol, a rise in good cholesterol, and lowering of high blood pressure, and, decrease in pain levels--and increased clarity of thought and helpful balancing of neuro- transmitters that govern behaviors.

A medically meaningful dose of Turmeric might look something like: 4 capsules 2 to 4 times a day. Expect decreased pain levels, better mentation, better circulation.
Might wish to start researching at this site: http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/ART03001/Three-Reasons-to-Eat-Turmeric.html
Dr. Weil has decades of experience/knowledge, a stellar reputation in alternative healing methods.

A medically useful dose of Ginkgo might look something like: 120 mg. twice a day, for someone with circulation impairments like cellulitis in their lower legs, for instance.
One might expect clarity of thinking processes, better circulation to the body.
BUT, if a person is on other blood thinners, the Doc needs to monitor your coagulation time, and be able to adjust the prescription drug as the ginkgo does it's work. There are fewer adverse effects from ginkgo, than from man-made blood thinners. However, Docs usually prefer the pharmaceuticals because they know how those work and know what to expect--they are not generally knowledgeable about herbs, and tend to stay away from those.

ALL those must be put in context of what else is going on: the usual habits of the patient, like what they otherwise consume, what their other conditions are, how willing are they to make healthier changes, etc.

My Dad finally, out of fear, chose to use ginkgo, which worked well...but might have worked far better, if he had also chosen to make some changes in his other non-healthy habits. His basic rather fatalistic thinking ran towards: "I have already lived too long, what's the point? This body is all used up, why deny myself the goodies and things I like?" He often failed to follow directions, but did things his own way--not always optimal. [[...and he was a very educated, sensible person!!]

The overall person must be evaluated.
Alternatives are not magic, not instant, and do not make up for all the other things going haywire.
Alternatives can do MUCH to help, though.
AND, in the right context, can seem to perform miracles.
It all depends on the total, overall circumstances for the person in question.
Study, learn.
Rule of thumb is, the better care each person takes of themselves while younger, the less medical intervention is needed later.
But age and infirmity WILL catch us all--at present, we DO have some say over what form that infirmity takes.
Those currently going through hard times medically, physically, mentally, have far less choice than those who are younger.
Study, learn!
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Coconut oil is also said to be good for a lot of things including brain health. It also should be used to prevent Alzheimer's instead of once you have it.
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Tameric is suppose to be good for preventing plaque build up in the brain. If the plaque is already there which is the case for Alzheimer's then there is not much it will do. People from India use this ingrediant in almost every meal and they have the lowest rate of Alzheimer's in the world.
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Just heard this morning on GMA that tumeric may be good for colds.........
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Tried too on the recommendation of his Doctor. Don't think it does any good if you already have Alzheimer's, but might do some good preventably, if you have a family history. Can't really hurt. Apparently people in India, who use Tumeric in alot of their cooking have a lower incidence of Alzheimer's.
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I have heard it was. I tried it on my husband, went thru a few bottles. But no change in him. BUT you should try everything. You never know, it might work for one but not the other. My doctor said go ahead, try anything.
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