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This should come as no surprise. Clogged arteries serving the brain and clogged arteries serving the heart are part and parcel of the same disease. The cause is the same: a buildup of fat and cholesterol and lethal damage to the delicate endothelial lining of the blood vessels. And the cure is the same, as well: adopting a healthful new way of eating that includes not a single ingredient known to damage vascular health.
Just as you are not doomed to heart disease as you grow older, you also are not doomed to mental deterioration. Most cases of stroke and dementia, like heart disease, need never occur. Your aorta, along with all your other arteries, can be as clean at ninety years of age as they were when you were nine.
Esselstyn Jr. M.D., Caldwell B. (2007-02-01). Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease: The Revolutionary, Scientifically Proven, Nutrition-Based Cure (pp. 97-98).
THE STORY In Japan there are efforts under way to change the diagnostic terminology for persons labeled with mental illnesses associated with aging. The current label given to persons with dementia, chihou, is a compound word, with chi meaning â€śfoolish and losing oneâ€™s reason,â€ť and hou meaning â€śstupid and absent of mind.â€ť
Several Japanese colleagues have told me that this connotation is often perceived as an insult, and that many people given a chihou diagnosis are often, quite understandably, ashamed and deeply resentful. The severe stigma has created the need for a new label. Professionals in the field have proposed that the new label be ninchishou. Ninchishou is also a compound word, with ninchi meaning â€ścognition,â€ť or â€śawareness,â€ť and shou meaning â€śdispositions,â€ť â€śsymptoms,â€ť or â€śchallengesâ€ťâ€”roughly translating to â€śawareness of cognitive symptoms.â€ť
In 2005, Japanâ€™s Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare posted the intent, purpose, and related information of changing the name for dementia on their Web site and invited opinions from the public.
Ninchishou emerged as the victor. The purpose of instituting this new terminology is that a patient given the label will better be able to reconcile their condition and adapt to it without feeling themselves to be fools. Likewise, such a semantic adaptation may lessen the tendency to ostracize aging persons, and may help communities embrace the elderly and see the person rather than the dementia. This is conceptual reframing at its best: Modify the label, change the story patients and their families find themselves a part of, and improve quality of life without compromising clinical care. Most important, change was brought about democratically by the Japanese people rather than just by the medical community. Precedent has been set for the end of the Alzheimerâ€™s myth, and we too can reject and replace the corrupted cultural myth of AD with a more humane and empathetic story that helps aging persons and their families. To those who question whether changing words can really have a neurological impact, consider this: As a neuroscientist, I can tell you that every time you hear the word Alzheimerâ€™s, it affects your brain. The word triggers certain neural circuits that give access to our inner lexicon of words and meanings. Words that are loaded with powerful emotions (Alzheimerâ€™s disease, death, terror, fear, and so on) affect the brain in more powerful ways, and can even induce physiological changes in the brain, such as the release of stress hormones that may be damaging to neurons. Can precluding such changes by using different words help neurons survive? Maybe. But even in the event that they donâ€™t make a direct impact on the molecular level, different words and concepts can still assist people and families in adapting to their condition. The Japanese government wouldnâ€™t be spending so much money on developing a new terminology if words were only words.
Whitehouse, Peter J. M.D.; Daniel George M.Sc. (2008-12-09). The Myth of Alzheimer's: What You Aren't Being Told About Today's Most Dreaded Diagnosis (Kindle Locations 826-834). St. Martin's Press. Kindle Edition.