Things That Make You Go Really?
...Two new scientific studies in the past couple of months have shown some benefit in helping brain functioning amid Alzheimer's: one on meditation, the other on rosemary oil aromatherapy.
My first response to that was to scratch my head in puzzlement. Could the authors of the article really be suggesting that "woo-woo" medicine might have a place in treating this disease, things that doctors should be considering? The answer is yes. Unfortunately, they didn't provide a link to either study or give much information about the two. Also, unfortunately, I didn't have time to hit the Google to track the two studies down, although I will hopefully be able to do so later today. If I find them, I'll post an update.
In any event, here's the brief conclusion on the use of meditation by Alzheimer's patients:
Early findings showed a surprising, substantial increase in cerebral blood flow in the patients' prefrontal, superior frontal and superior parietal cortices, and also better cognitive function in the group that performed regular meditation. [Emphasis added]
And here's the finding on rosemary oil aromatherapy:
Results indicate for the first time in human subjects that concentration of 1,8- cineole in the blood is related to an individual's cognitive performance – with higher concentrations resulting in improved performance. Both speed and accuracy were improved in the study in cognitive functioning. [Emphasis added]
Now, without knowing more than the article provided, and without further studies testing the hypotheses, I'm not about to rush out and take a meditation class and to purchase a rosemary oil aromatherapy machine. Still, the findings of these two studies are interesting and do deserve a further look-see.
As the article states in its conclusion, the brain is one complicated organ:
...The brain is a complex organism, with many complex mechanisms that lead to optimum functioning. Early trials show that aromatherapy and meditation improve blood supply and enhance cognitive skills. Ongoing data are showing us that we have much power to help treat Alzheimer's integratively, keeping in mind that environment, exercise, health, lifestyle, meditation, music and smells can be all be beneficial in improving brain function.
It's pretty hard to argue with that.