The demonstrated health benefits of each ingredient in Neurcumin® provides a wide variety of potential uses in the fight against:
- High Blood Pressure
- Oxidative Stress
- Elevated Homocysteine Levels
The destructive effects of inflammation, neurodegeneration, oxidative stress, aging, AGEs, and elevated homocysteine levels on the brain and body are associated with many diseases and chronic health conditions such as:
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Heart Disease
- Parkinson’s Disease
Inflammation is the process by which the body’s immune cells and chemicals protect us from infection and foreign substances such as bacteria and viruses. Inflammation is the first response of the immune system in fighting infection or irritation. Without inflammation, we would not be able to survive in a hostile world infested with dangerous microorganisms. Inflammation involves a number of responses aimed at destroying, or at least slowing down, invading pathogens.
However, the immune cells and their inflammatory chemicals can cause damage to the body’s tissues. In a perfect world, inflammation should stop when the threat to the body has been eliminated. Unfortunately, chronic inflammation may persist with or without a foreign threat to the body. This could be the result of an increased sensitivity of the inflammatory response, or the process now perceiving the body’s own tissues as foreign.
Both aging and age-related disorders are associated with an increase in chronic inflammation. As we age, we tend to develop chronic inflammation and inflammatory related disorders such as ARTHRITIS. Most elderly people have some degree of low-grade inflammation and an inflammatory related disorder. Chronic inflammation contributes to AGING because it produces harmful free radicals that injure and/or even kill normal cells. Chronic inflammation and aging are a vicious cycle — the aging process contributes to the level of chronic inflammation which, in turn, promotes aging.
Inflammation is not disease or location specific. It affects the entire body and causes a variety of diseases. While it can occur anywhere, it is particularly pronounced in the cardiovascular and nervous system, which happen to be the two systems most dependent to our survival. Inflammation is a key risk factor for HEART DISEASE and STROKE, and an even bigger risk factor than high cholesterol. Inflammation contributes to age-related neurodegenerative diseases, such as ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE and PARKINSON’S DISEASE.
Oxidative stress is the result of an imbalance between the production of oxygen free radicals and the ability to detoxify them, or repair the resulting damage they cause. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) form as a byproduct of the metabolism of oxygen and include oxygen ions, free radicals, and peroxides. Environmental stress can cause ROS levels to increase dramatically. This can result in significant cellular damage which cumulates in an effect called oxidative stress, which has been linked to AGING, NEURODEGENERATION, CANCER, and other diseases in humans.
Neurodegeneration describes the progressive injury and death of neurons without a known cause. Neurodegenerative diseases include but are not limited to ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE, PARKINSON’S DISEASE, and HUNTINGTON’S DISEASE. Aging is the most important risk factor for common neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Aging in the brain has been associated with increased inflammation, oxidative damage, and injury to mitochondrial DNA. These processes are also directly related to the brain structures most affected by neurodegenerative processes. Although neurodegenerative diseases have many differences, they all share common mechanisms of pathophysiology that conspire to kill neurons such as: inflammation, oxidative damage, and mitochondrial DNA damage. These similarities offer hope for therapeutic advances that target these mechanisms and can delay the onset and reduce the incidence of these diseases.
Aging is the accumulation of changes in our body over time. Inflammation has been linked to many age-related ailments and diseases, which include WRINKLES, ARTHRITIS, HEART DISEASE, ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE, and CANCER. As we age, the degree of inflammation increases along with the incidence of inflammatory related diseases. Inflammation can be reduced, or even prevented, by changing our diet, lifestyle, or environment. Following an inflammation-reducing diet and taking anti-oxidant and/or anti-inflammatory supplements is crucial.
Please refer to the dedicated section on inflammation for a more descriptive correlation between inflammation and aging.
In addition to inflammation, the accumulation of damaged mitochondrial DNA has been proposed as a potential mechanism in the physiological processes of aging and age-related diseases. Recently, laboratory testing has provided the first direct evidence that accelerating mitochondrial DNA damage can result in premature aging.
Mitochondria are the greatest source of reactive oxygen species within the cell. Reactive oxygen species can be helpful but can also induce cell damage and death. If their production is not controlled, detrimental effects from oxidative stress can occur. Oxidative stress is widely thought to underlie many processes related to aging, and the oxidative stress theory of aging is one of the most widely acknowledged theories of aging. Mitochondria are the major source of reactive oxygen species and major site of oxidative damage.
Homocysteine is an amino acid derived from the consumption of meat (including red meat, chicken, and fish). Elevated homocysteine levels can lead to vascular pathology through a variety of mechanisms.
Hyperhomocysteinemia is an increase in the level of homocysteine in the blood. There is a strong relationship between hyperhomocysteinuria, CAROTID ARTERY STENOSIS, and STROKE. Even a moderate elevation of homocysteine is an independent risk factor for the development of stroke. Homocysteine can cause ATHEROSCLEROSIS, THROMBOSIS, and HYPERCOAGULABLE STATES. It is also NEUROTOXIC TO BRAIN CELLS having NMDA glutamate receptors. Elevated homocysteine levels can also further the progression of pre-existing atherosclerosis.
Studies now further demonstrate increased levels of homocysteine may cause BRAIN ATROPHY and VASCULAR DISEASE, and therefore may be related to the development of DEMENTIA and possibly ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE. Studies show that elderly people who had greater brain atrophy were twice as likely to have high homocysteine levels. It is believed that elevated homocysteine in Alzheimer’s disease is not the direct cause or result of Alzheimer’s disease but rather, is related to a well-documented association with vascular disease.
Advanced Glycation End (AGEs) are the end-products of an abnormal bonding between a sugar molecule to either a protein or lipid molecule. AGEs come from two sources: the food we eat and internal production within the body. AGEs form when proteins are cooked with sugars in the absence of water. AGEs can also be formed inside the body from simple sugars within food. This occurs more frequently in diabetics, whose blood sugar levels are elevated more often. Thus, diseases associated with AGEs, such as CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASES, ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE (amyloid proteins are side-products of the reactions progressing to AGEs), PERIPHERAL NEUROPATHY (the myelin is attacked), and BLINDNESS (mostly due to microvascular damage in the retina), are more prevalent in diabetics.
AGEs can also damage blood vessels. Atherosclerotic plaque tends to form at areas of high blood flow due to the increased presentation of sugar molecules. AGEs cause stiffening of collagen in the blood vessel walls, which leads to HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE. Moreover, AGEs also cause weakening of collagen in the blood vessel walls, which may cause MICRO OR MACRO-ANEURYSMS.