Can cucumbers help prevent memory loss in Alzheimer’s disease?
That sounds like a lofty ask of the humble cucumber, but is it so far-fetched after all?
Scientific research indicates there may be something to this idea.
In the April 2014 edition of the journal Aging Cell, researchers published the results of a study examining the effects of a constituent of cucumbers called fisetin on cognitive function in mice with Alzheimer’s disease.
Please note – as usual, we are against animal research here at PursuitofGreat.com. These findings are presented for informational purposes and not in support of the methods used to acquire them.
To determine any impact fisetin might have on the cognition of these Alzheimer’s disease-afflicted mice, they observed four different groups of mice performing various tests designed to show how their memory might have progressed or regressed over time.
They observed two groups of wild-type mice, one fed fisetin and one without, and two more groups of Alzheimer’s disease-afflicted mice, one fed fisetin and one without.
In the first learning assessment, both groups of wild mice performed similarly, showing improvement over the duration of the test. Fisetin did not seem to have an impact on the wild mice.
In the Alzheimer’s mice, however, there was a significant difference.
The Alzheimer’s mice who did not receive fisetin showed very little learning over the duration of the test. The Alzheimer’s mice who did receive fisetin, on the other hand, performed almost indistinguishably from the wild mice.
When it came to memory, results were similar. Both groups of wild mice showed significant recall, while the fisetin-fed group of Alzheimer’s mice also showed clear evidence of memory improvement.
The Alzheimer’s mice that were not fed fisetin, however, showed no indication of memory.
How Does this Apply to Us?
First of all, although this shows a clear indication that fisetin, a molecule found in cucumbers, can help prevent cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s disease-afflicted mice, that does not necessarily mean it will do the same in humans, but it does give us hope.
Secondly, it does not tell us if regular cucumber consumption might give us similar results and, if so, how much consumption would be necessary to achieve those results.
So it seems that, as is the case with so many whole foods found in nature, there could be great health benefits in focusing on their consumption.
Benefits of Cucumbers
The great news as far as cucumbers are concerned is that they are a very inexpensive food, accessible to many, with very low sugar and caloric content. Unless you are allergic, they are very easy to incorporate into most diets.
They won’t break the bank on your calorie count or your wallet. Their low sugar content makes them an ideal, mild addition to fresh juices and they can be prepared quickly and easily when eaten fresh.
So, if you or someone you love is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, talk with your doctor about whether or not including cucumbers would be a good idea.
Perhaps it could become part of a comprehensive dietary plan to stave off the effects of Alzheimer’s disease.
If not, they have a host of other benefits that could be beneficial. So, unless you are allergic or on a specific diet to deal with other issues, they could offer a great benefit.
Here’s to your health!
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