Curcumin from turmeric root (curcuma longa) has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic and Traditional Chinese Medicine against the inflammation associated with aging. With respect to the brain, recent evidence shows that curcumin helps protect against cognitive decline and dementia by keeping our neurons healthy as we age. Developed by neuroscientists at UCLA, the absorption-optimized curcumin in Amrita Anti-Aging Brain Food has been clinically proven to help clear toxic beta-amyloid plaques from the brain and reduce oxidative stress and inflammation throughout the body, exerting synergistic effects in detoxification and repair.
Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by the buildup of beta-amyloid plaques and tau tangles in and between neurons. Several studies have demonstrated that Longvida, the optimized curcumin in Amrita, crosses the blood brain barrier and directly binds to and removes beta-amyloid from the brain, in addition to preventing the formation of new plaques and tangles. By reducing the amyloid burden, Longvida decreases neural inflammation and neurotoxicity and has been shown to improve cognitive function. National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded research concluded that Longvida “reduced tau and elevated [proteins] involved in tau clearance, showing that even after tangles have formed, Tau-dependent behavioral and synaptic deficits can be corrected.”
In addition to reversing amyloid pathology, curcumin dampens several other inflammatory pathways that promote neurodegeneration and restores homeostasis of the brain’s immune system. One of its most well-researched effects is inhibiting NF-kB, a protein that influences the genetic code to produce a cascade of inflammatory enzymes. It also prevents microglial cells (the brain’s immune cells) from activating each other, blocking their inflammatory domino effect. Curcumin protects neurons from LPS, the toxin released from gut bacteria in the case of leaky gut, and has been shown to exert potent anti-inflammatory effects on joints, skin and gut tissue as well as in the brain.
Yet another way that curcumin helps prevent neuronal damage and oxidation in the brain is by upregulating antioxidant genes. Curcumin activates the genes that turn on BDNF (Brain-derived Neurotrophic Factor), glutathione and SOD, powerful antioxidants produced by the brain. Curcumin also has the ability to protect DNA from oxidation via the heavy metal arsenic, which was demonstrated in humans using a mixture of curcumin and piperine (black pepper extract).
Several studies indicate that curcumin helps promote neurogenesis, the creation of new brain cells. It enhances the synthesis of DHA, which is the most prevalent omega-3 fatty acid in the brain and is vital for brain development and protection.
Standard curcumin unfortunately has very low bioavailability and brain tissue penetration. The curcumin in Amrita was specifically developed by neuroscientists at UCLA to cross the blood brain barrier and is clinically proven to deliver potent anti-amyloid, anti-inflammatory, and neuroprotective outcomes in humans. While most curcumin supplements are metabolized by the body before they can reach the bloodstream, lipid-based delivery technology prevents the curcumin in Longvida from being rapidly broken down and excreted, allowing for 24-hour circulation in the blood and tangible health applications. Human bioavailability studies have found that Longvida is 65 times more bioavailable than ordinary curcumin as measured by the Cmax method and 285 times more bioavailable as measured by the AUC normalized method. A UCLA-Veterans Administration (VA) study showed that Longvida absorbed into the brain within 3-hours after the initial dose, and therapeutic levels of brain curcumin have been detected after long-term low dose Longvida supplementation. Another study in healthy humans concluded that a dose as low as 200mg of Longvida (half the dose in Amrita) reaches the blood levels of free curcumin required for healthy brain aging.