E-Mail Edition  Volume 13   Number 5

Published Fall, 2016

Published by Piccadilly Books, Ltd., www.piccadillybooks.com.

Bruce Fife, N.D., Publisher, www.coconutresearchcenter.org  


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  • Foods Fight Dementia
  • Artificial Sweeteners Make You Fat!
  • Coconut Oil Skin Treatment for Your Dog
  • Coconut Oil is Saving the Sea Turtles


Foods Fight Dementia


Dementia is a major concern among the elderly. Alzheimer’s is by far the most common cause of dementia. Approximately 5.4 million Americans and 30 million people worldwide have Alzheimer’s disease. The number of people affected is steadily growing. Alzheimer’s is not a disease that just affects the brain, it is a terminal illness. The brain controls the action of all the other organs, when it fails,


Ratatouille, from Dr. Fife's Keto Cookery by Bruce Fife

so do all of the other organs. Recent estimates suggest that Alzheimer’s has become the third leading cause of death in the United States, just behind heart disease and cancer.1

Current treatments for Alzheimer’s have been a dismal failure. A new approach is desperately needed. One promising approach is through diet therapy, consisting of mostly foods and supplements. Researchers at UCLA have developed a novel non-drug based program to reverse memory loss. The program is called metabolic enhancement for neurodegeneration (MEND). A pilot study involving 10 participants displayed significant improvement in their memories beginning within three to six months after the program’s start.2 Of the six patients who had to discontinue working or were struggling with their jobs at the time they joined the study, all were able to return to work or continue working with improved performance.

Improvements the patients have experienced have been sustained and as of this writing, have been maintained for 2 ½ years since the initial treatment. The subjects included patients with memory loss associated with Alzheimer’s disease, amnestic mild cognitive impairment, or subjective cognitive impairment. The only patient that didn’t show improvement during the study was one with late stage Alzheimer’s.

 The MEND program involves optimizing nutrient intake with a good diet and key dietary vitamin and mineral supplementation, limiting carbohydrate consumption, stimulating ketone production, balancing hormones, taking protective antioxidant and anti-inflammatory supplements, getting regular exercise, reducing stress, getting adequate sleep, chelating toxic metals if necessary, and consuming a dietary source of MCTs such as coconut oil.

Healthy exercise walking dogs

Getting sunshine and healthy exercise walking the dogs.

Photo: themorguefile.com


Stop Alzheimer's Now

Stop Alzheimer's Now!

by Dr. Bruce Fife


Available from Piccadilly Books, Ltd.

click here

The MEND protocol is very similar to the one outlined in my book Stop Alzheimer’s Now. However, in my book I put more emphasis on the therapeutic effects of ketones and the ketogenic diet.

 This approach has proven far superior to the standard approach to treating Alzheimer’s disease which focuses on drug therapy. The drugs used to treat Alzheimer’s have proven to be a dismal failure. These drugs cannot reverse or even stop the progression of the disease. The very best they can hope to do is slow down the progression of the disease. Studies show that only half of those patients who use these drugs show any positive effect. The other half experience absolutely no benefit whatsoever. And in those who do show an effect, the effect is so small, so tiny, that there is no noticeable difference in a patient’s day-to-day life and ability to function. Studies also show, that after 6 months to a year, the drugs stop working, so they provide no benefit whatsoever for 100 percent of the patients who take them. Bottom line is that these drugs offer no perceivable benefit to any patient. They are prescribed more to placate the caregiver than they are to help the patient.

However, these drugs are not benign either. They are accompanied by some potentially awful side effects including nausea, diarrhea, headache, insomnia, generalized pain, dizziness, mental confusion, hallucinations, seizures, and death. The drugs don’t ease the symptoms of the disease or reduce its duration; they only seem to make it worse.

 A natural, diet-based approach offers the potential for stopping the disease and even reversing it, giving the patient many additional productive and quality years to their life. The new study comes jointly from the UCLA Mary S. Easton Center for Alzheimer’s Disease Research and the Buck Institute of Research on Aging. The study author, Dale Bredesen, MD said, “It is noteworthy that the major side effect of this therapeutic system is improved health and an optimal body mass index, a stark contrast to the side effect of many drugs.” Can you imagine that? The side effects include better overall health instead of symptoms that need to be treated with additional drugs.


Salmon and asparagus

Asparagus and salmon, from Dr. Fife's Keto Cookery.



roasted vegetables

Roasted vegetables from Dr. Fife's Keto Cookery.


and traveling widely. She found that she no longer could effectively analyze the date or prepare the reports and was forced to consider leaving her job. She noted that when she would read, by the time she reached the bottom of the page she had forgotten what was written at the top and needed to reread the page several times. She was no longer able to remember numbers and had to write down even 4-digit numbers to remember them. She also began to have trouble finding her way around when she drove and even got lost on familiar roads. She began mixing up the names of her pets and would forget where the light switches were in her home.

 She sought help with her memory problems and was told there was nothing that she could do about it other than take the standard Alzheimer’s drugs, which would have little effect. She eventually was led to the MEND program. She eliminated all sugar, gluten, and processed foods from her diet. She increased her consumption of vegetables, fruits, and non-farmed fish. In order to reduce stress she began taking yoga classes and to meditate for 20 minutes twice a day. She increased the amount of sleep she got each night from 4-5 hours to 7-8 hours. She added vitamin and mineral supplements and MCTs to her diet. She began an exercise program working out a minimum of 30 minutes a day, 4 to 6 days a week.

After three months, her

men and women doing yoga exercise

Tai Chi class in the UK. Photo: themorguefile.com

memory problems disappeared. She was again able to drive without problems, remember 7-digit phone numbers without difficulty, read and prepare reports with ease, and do all the work that was required for her job. She noted that her memory was better after completing the program than it had been in many years. Now, at age 70, she remains mentally sharp and works full-time.

Nine out of the 10 patients who followed the program had similar success, demonstrating that memory loss can be reversed and improvement sustained with a dietary and lifestyle approach. The only subject in the study that failed to respond was one who had advanced Alzheimer’s disease, indicating that the earlier a person begins the program the better the results.

The results of this pilot study were so promising that additional, longer-term studies with larger numbers of patients are planned. You do not need to wait for the results of these studies. A safe and effective treatment for Alzheimer’s very similar to the MEND program is already available in my book Stop Alzheimer’s Now. If you or any of your family members are experiencing memory problems you can take action now before it gets worse or develops into full-blown dementia. A few simple changes, such as adding coconut oil into your daily diet, can make a difference.



1. James, BD, et al. Contribution of Alzheimer disease to mortality in the United States. Neurology 2014;82:1045-1050.

2. Bredesen, DE. Reversal of cognitive decline: A novel therapeutic program. Aging 2014;6:707-717.




Artificial Sweeteners Make You Fat!

 Do you eat foods and beverages sweetened with sugar substitutes to avoid sugar and help control calorie intake to manage your weight? Do you drink diet soda in place of regular soda? Honestly, have these measures ever helped you lose any weight? If you are like most people, the answer is “No.”

Sweetner grouping 



The Stevia Deception by Bruce Fife 

The Stevia Deception

by Dr. Bruce Fife


Available from Piccadilly Books, Ltd.

click here

Oddly enough, replacing sugar with artificial sweeteners does not help with weight loss. It in fact, promotes greater weight gain!

When artificial sweeteners such as aspartame, saccharin, and sucralose were introduced, they were accompanied with great fanfare and promises that they would reduce calorie intake and promote weight loss. Theoretically, it seems logical they could help with weight loss. If you replace the sugar in your diet with zero-calorie sweeteners, you end up consuming fewer calories, and therefore, you should lose weight. In theory it makes sense. In reality it doesn’t work.

When artificial sweeteners were introduced they were hailed as a partial solution to our growing obesity problem. Since their introduction the obesity problem has turned into a full-blown epidemic. Ironically, the solution to the obesity problem has turned out to be one of the major causes of it!

While foods sweetened with artificial sweeteners may contain fewer calories than the sugar sweetened versions, they cause an increase in hunger that leads to excessive calorie consumption and weight gain.

A number of studies in both animals and humans have shown that artificial sweeteners tend to promote more weight gain than sugar does. The reason for this has been a mystery. A new study, however, offers insights as to why these sweeteners promote hunger and weight gain.

“There is a lot of discussion about how these sweeteners actually affect human health,” says Dr. Greg Neely, an associate professor of genomic at the University of Sydney in Australia and senior author of the new study. “Our data show that chronic consumption of [artificially sweetened foods] triggers a conserved neuronal fasting response and increases the motivation to eat.”1

The researchers began their work on fruit flies, giving them either a diet of food sweetened with sugar or sucralose, the sweetener found in Splenda, for 5 days. (Neely noted that sucralose was used as the artificial sweetener in part because fruit flies don’t seem to like saccharin, the sweetener used in Sweet’N Low.).

The researchers observed that the flies that had been fed the sucralose diet ate about 30 percent more calories than the ones that had been eating sugar. The researchers wanted to know what was going on in the flies’ brains to drive them to eat more.

Using molecular genetic approaches to study the activity of brain cells, the scientists found that the sucralose activated a “fasting response” in the flies’ brains. In other words, because the flies were consuming fewer calories when they were fed the sucralose, their brains did not recognize that they were eating enough calories. And so, to compensate for this perceived lack of calories in the food, the fasting response pathway in the brain triggered the flies to eat more.

The researchers found a neurotransmitter in the brain called neuropeptide F played a role in the fasting response in the fruit flies. Mice and humans have an analogous neurotransmitter, called neuropeptide Y.

The researchers conducted the same experiment using mice with a similar result; those mice that were fed sucralose-sweetened jellies ate more food than those that were not given the sucralose. However, when the researchers used genetically modified mice that did not have neuropeptide Y, sucralose had little effect on the animals’ appetite. In other words, neuropeptide Y played a role in how artificial sweeteners affected the animals’ appetites.

These new findings suggest that in both fruit flies and mice, sucralose promotes increased food intake. Since humans also have neuropeptide Y, that may explain why artificial sweeteners tend to promote weight gain in us too. Dr. Neely also noted that the flies consuming the artificial sweeteners also exhibited other symptoms, including hyperactivity, insomnia, and glucose intolerance. Glucose intolerance or insulin resistance is the landmark feature characteristic of type 2 diabetes.

This isn’t just a characteristic of sucralose, all artificial sweeteners seem to trigger the “fasting response” in our brains.2 Consuming foods and beverages sweetened with artificial sweeteners would not only promote increased appetite but also cravings, severely challenging the success of any diet. It appears that if weight loss or weight management is your goal, it is best to stay away from the artificial sweeteners.



1. Wang, QP, et al. Sucralose promotes food intake through NPY and a neuronal fasting response. Cell Metab 2016;24:75-90.

2. Yang, Q. Gain weight by “going diet?” Artificial sweeteners and the neurobiology of sugar cravings. Yale J Biol Med 2010;83:101-108.




Coconut Oil Skin Treatment for Your Dog

Dr. Karen Becker, DVM gives her dog Rosco a coconut oil treatment weekly to soften his skin and ward of infection. Rosco is a 15-year-old Boston Terrier. Like most elderly dogs his skin tends to be flaky and itchy, causing him to scratch and bite excessively, which can lead to bleeding and infections. An application of coconut oil on his skin and coat softens his skin and helps build a natural protective layer to keep it healthy.

Dr. Karen Becker and her dog Rosco
Dr. Karen Becker with her dog Rosco.

Coconut Therapy For Pets
Coconut Therapy for Pets

by Dr. Bruce Fife


Available from Piccadilly Books, Ltd.

click here


In this video Dr Becker demonstrates on Rosco how to use a coconut oil treatment to help keep her dog’s skin and coat healthy and infection-free.

After giving Rosco a bath and drying his coat, coconut oil is applied liberally over the dog’s skin and coat, including his paws and nails. Areas that tend to be excessively flaky or itchy are given special attention to make sure the oil is worked into the skin. The oil is allowed to soak into the skin and hair for about 5 minutes. Most dogs love the taste of coconut oil and will begin licking it off, that’s ok.

You don’t want your dog running around your house with oil all over its coat, so you will want to wash off the excess oil with a light application of shampoo and a final rinse. You don’t need a lot of shampoo or want to remove all the oil, just the oil on the surface of the dog’s coat. See the video below.

 video icon  

Dr. Becker: Why use coconut oil for skin treatmentDr. Karen BEcker and her dog Rosco.
Click here to watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aCC3opz7LWo


Coconut Oil is Saving the Sea Turtles

 The benefits of coconut oil are many. Coconut oil can help improve both physical and mental health, improve the health and appearance of your skin and hair, reduce risk of numerous health problems such as diabetes, cancer, and Alzheimer’s, and fight off infections. It also makes a good makeup remover, and degreaser, and is a fantastic cooking oil. Another benefit is that it is helping to save endangered sea turtles from extinction.

  Leatherback sea turtle.
Leatherback sea turtle. Photo by US Fish and Wildlife Service.

The leatherback sea turtle is the largest living turtle and the heaviest reptile next to the crocodile. Mature sea turtles are typically between 4 to 6 feet in length and weigh 650 to 1,100 pounds. The turtles have a characteristic leather-like shell and a teardrop-shaped body with a large pair of front flippers to power them through the water.

Adult leatherback sea turtles don’t have teeth, but rather delicate, scissor-like jaws. Their jaws would be damaged eating hard foods so they subsist almost entirely on jellyfish; they are one of the few animals that feed on jellyfish. The sea turtles’ thick skin, including the skin in their mouths and throat, are impervious to the jellyfish’s stings. Consequently, sea turtles are invaluable in controlling jellyfish populations, including the deadly man-of-war.

Unfortunately, sea turtles often eat floating plastic bags and other debris which they mistake as jellyfish. The plastic clogs their throats and digestive tract, killing them. Many more are killed when caught in fishing nets.

The turtles leave the water and lay their eggs on land. When the eggs hatch, the baby turtles make a dash to the sea. This is a perilous trip as predators abound and snatch the helpless turtles by the hundreds before they can reach the safety of the ocean waves. The trip from the nest to the sea is so perilous that only about 1 in 100 survives the journey. Even if they manage to reach the water they remain easy prey to numerous ocean predators for the next several years.

Plastic trash looks like a jellyfish.
Decaying plastic bag resembles a jellyfigh.
Photo by Seegraswiese.

Baby sea turtle.
Baby sea turtle. Photo by Dtobias.

People around the world hunt the sea turtle and harvest its eggs. The love of sea turtle eggs in Asia and Central America has been cited as the most significant factor for the species’ global population decline. In Southeast Asia, egg harvesting has lead to a near-total collapse of local nesting populations. For example, in Malaysia, which once had a booming population of sea turtles, they are now nearly extinct. Some biologists have estimated that the leatherback could become extinct within the next 10 years.

Some local communities are now helping to save the leatherback by making coconut oil. …Come again? How does making coconut oil help to save sea turtles? It all comes down to economics. Sea turtles and their eggs are harvested and poached by local villagers as a means of making a living. The production and sale of coconut oil creates an alternative source of income for the villagers living along the sea turtles nesting beaches.

The island Barra de Pacuare on the eastern coast of Costa Rica is an example. The island is not a tourist destination and locals have few options of earning income. Poachers have been hunting the eggs for a lifetime and have no other marketable skills. It is difficult to stop them from poaching as they are mostly illiterate and lack any employable skills. However, they are finding the community production of coconut oil to be a workable alternative that provides year round income so that they no longer need to poach sea turtle eggs.

The Casa de Coco (house of coconut) in Costa Rica is a volunteer organization established to teach villagers how to set up, produce, and market coconut oil from the thousands of coconuts that grow wild in the region. Their efforts are turning long time poachers into successful coconut oil producers. Rather than stripping the world of an endangered species, they are now producing a renewable source of food and medicine that benefits everyone, including the sea turtles. Hooray for the coconut!

 If you would like to learn more about the work being done at Casa de Coco go online to http://savingtheturtlesincr.blogspot.com/#!/







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Copyright © 2016, Bruce Fife. All rights reserved.