I am delighted to share with you a new read that you possibly won’t wish to put down, a gripping novel about a dysfunctional family and Alzheimer’s disease – seemingly a recipe for disaster.

The author of Brought to Our Senses, Kathleen H. Wheeler, in her debut as a novelist draws from her own personal experience, growing up in central Illinois as a child of divorce and later working with siblings at odds with each other as they are forced to deal with the Alzheimer’s disease of their mother.

This story invites the reader to meet 34-year-old Elizabeth Miller, a mama’s girl, whose life is upended as her mother receives a dementia diagnosis and becomes a volatile patient.  Elizabeth struggles to look after her mother alongside a brother and sisters who all hold a grudge about their upbringing.  The situation is further complicated by an attorney who derails a much-needed power of attorney agreement and the mom’s boyfriend who proposes marriage in a last-ditch attempt to skirt nursing home placement.

The antagonist is the mother of the family named Janice.  While causing all sorts of problems for her children, she deals with the heartbreaking reality of dementia.  She refuses to go down without a fight, and her denial and hostility stems from fear as much as cognitive impairment.

This book tackles the difficult journey through legal guardianship, why that’s necessary and how it is accomplished.

Forced into the role of caregiver, Elizabeth’s challenge is to care for her mother in the best way possible, which is difficult with siblings who don’t agree on what’s best.

She travels an unexpected path of reconciliation with a brother and sisters, who are called to put aside their differences as they come together to support their mother.

This novel is about coming to terms with a family in conflict and caring for aging parents.  Most importantly, it’s about finding the way back home to family when they’re needed most – when the going gets tough.

D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review, has this to say about Brought to Our Senses: “..one of the most true-to-life, gripping accounts on the complexities of interconnected family relationships that has appeared in recent years.. Very highly recommended as a striking jewel that is a glowing standout from the growing stack of dementia fiction sagas.”

To get the jump on a bonus offer of Brought to Our Senses ahead of the release date, November 1, click here.

Bringing up this subject is a bit depressing, for I know that more often than not our attention as caregivers is on the immediate needs of our loved ones.  We may not be considering ‘down the road’ how our own caregiving needs are going to be met.

Thanks to Nicole Lascurain, from the staff of Healthline.com for sharing some timely information that may impact many of us as caregivers in the future.  Click here to explore long term care options and how to fund the rising costs.



As we all know, the five FDA-approved medications for dementia with Alzheimer’s symptoms can only temporarily alleviate symptoms; they do not delay, stop, or reverse the disease progress.

I want you to know about a natural food supplement extracted from the sea scallop, which has been clinically proven to improve cognitive function, behavior, emotion, and life quality of Alzheimer’s and dementia patients!

I am pleased to share this promising news that comes to us from a research team  at Kyushu University in Japan led by Dr. Takehiko Fujino, Professor Emeritus of Kyushu University.

Our appreciation goes to Dr. Crystal Goh, Ph.D., Health Biotechnology, and Scientific Officer for Lifestream Group Pte Ltd., Singapore for contributing the article that we are about to enjoy.  Dr. Goh was a part of this research project.

I have reproduced the article in full as it contains much useful information and even some patient video interviews.  Here goes: 

Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN – the most promising solution for Alzheimer’s and dementia

With a deep passion to find a solution for Alzheimer’s and dementia, Emeritus Professor Takehiko Fujino (M.D., Ph.D.) from Kyushu University in Japan recently discovered a most promising solution for Alzheimer’s and dementia – Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN! This plasmalogen was clinically proven to improve cognitive function, behaviour, emotion and life quality of Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. Finally, a ray of hope is shining for these patients and their loved ones.

Plasmalogen – a vital component in the brain

Plasmalogens are a type of phospholipid present in almost all tissues of human beings and are most abundant in the brain. Plasmalogen level in the brain begins to increase from fetal stage and reach its peak by the 30s and start to decline thereafter.

Since 1995, researchers from Europe and US have found that Alzheimer’s patients have lower plasmalogen levels in the brain and blood serum compared to normal healthy persons. However, the research has made very little progress. In 2006, Professor Fujino and his team successfully developed a patented high-volume plasmalogen extraction method to extract 92% purity plasmalogens for animal testing and clinical trials on patients. Animal testing has shown that plasmalogens are critical for brain health and mental function. Through the animal testing, this team has discovered that plasmalogens:

  • Suppress accumulation of amyloid β proteins. These proteins will form amyloid plaque in the brain, which is one of the hallmarks of Alzheimer’s.

LPS activated accumulation of amyloid β proteins while simultaneous application of plasmalogens suppressed these proteins in the hippocampus of mice. Neurons were stained with NeuN which is shown in red (a – c). Control group treated with saline showed a slight fluorescent of amyloid β immunoreactivity (green) (d). LPS treatment increased the accumulation of amyloid β proteins (e) and these proteins were completely eradicated by plasmalogen treatment (f). Amyloid β and NeuN fluorescences were merged to show an intracellular location of amyloid β in the neurons (g and h) (Katafuchi et al., 2012).

Protect against neuronal (nerve) cell death in brain. Neuronal loss causes brain atrophy which is a prominent pathological characteristic of Alzheimer’s.

Plasmalogens inhibited hippocampal neuronal cell death in mice. Number of survived neuronal cells decreased to about 50% when cultured in nutrient-deprived medium. (A) These nutrient-deprived neuronal cells were then treated with plasmlogens for 72 hours. Survival rate significantly increased in these neuronal cells treated with plasmalogens compared with nutrient-deprived control neuronal cells. These neuronal cells were stained with Dil (red colour). Scale bar, 50 μm. (B) The bars show the number of primary hippocampal neuronal cells in the specific area of 12 randomly selected locations from each cell culture dish. The data represents average ± standard deviation from four independent experiments with significant differences between control and plasmalogen-treated groups (Bonferroni’s test, P < 0.001) (Hossain MS et al., 2013).

Improve learning and memory function. Video of this animal testing can be viewed at: https://www.facebook.com/plasmalogens/videos/1748410992114426/


  • Promote neurogenesis (growth of new nerve cells). Professor Fujino concludes that “It is unnecessary to improve cells destroyed by amyloid β protein if new cells are born. We believe that this very action, neurogenesis is the new treatment for dementia”.

World’s first discovery of plasmalogen-induced neurogenesis. Neurogenesis occurred in hippocampal dentate gyrus of a normal mouse resulted in denser cells (darker colour) (A). Neurogenesis did not occur in mouse with inflammation (C). After administration of plasmalogens, the condition in mouse with inflammation was restored to normal (D) as in normal mouse (B).

Clinical trial of Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN

With impressive results from the animal testing, Professor Fujino has decided to conduct a clinical trial of plasmalogen on Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. As plasmalogen extracted from scallop is enriched with DHA and EPA and its chemical structure is closest to those found in the human body, this research team decided to use Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN which they extracted from scallop. Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN is completely natural without any chemical modification. In 2015, a large-scale clinical trial which involved 225 patients with moderate and severe Alzheimer’s, Lewy body, cerebrovascular and semantic dementia (60 – 85 years old) was conducted to test the effectiveness of Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN on these patients after continuous intake for 3 months. This trial was completed in April 2016.  The full data from 225 patients is expected to be published late 2016 or 2017.

Real case studies of Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN on dementia patients

The clinically proven results are recognized by dementia specialists in Japan who recommended it as a natural therapy for their Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. I am enthusiastic to share some of the case studies with you here.

Case 1: Improvement from moderate to mild stage of dementia

Kiyoshi was diagnosed with semantic dementia for 3 years, which is characterised by language difficulty such as inability to understand words. His MMSE score before taking Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN was just 18 points, indicating moderate stage of dementia. However, his MMSE score increased to 23 points (mild stage) just 1 month after taking Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN. Watch video at:


Case 2: Most amazing improvement seen by research team

This 81-year-old Japanese woman was diagnosed with Lewy body dementia which is characterised by symptoms such as hallucinations. Before the intake of Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN, the patient was not very responsive when the doctor greeted her and sough permission to examine her. Remarkably, she showed dramatic changes just 2 weeks after the administration of Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN. Watch video at:


I am very honored for the privilege to be a part of this project to help Alzheimer’s and dementia sufferers improve and regain their quality of life and dignity. We hope to empower caregivers whose lives are also impacted by the immense physical, mental and financial stress of caring for their loved ones. I sincerely hope this article will be able to give caregivers the hope, strength and courage to go through this unimaginably difficult time. With this available option of natural dietary supplementation, Alzheimer’s and dementia are no longer fatal. This latest development will transform the lives of millions of people. If you are able, please like our Facebook page or share this article, videos or website to save more lives.

You can visit http://plasmalogen.me/ if you are interested to find out more about clinical trials of Scallop-derived PLASMALOGEN. Please feel free to email me at crystalgoh@plasmalogen.me if you need any further information. I also wish to share with you that The 1st International Plasmalogen Symposium will be held on November 7 and 8, 2016, in School of Medicine, Kyushu University in Japan. Please visit http://plssympo.com/index.html for more details.

Thank you, Dr. Goh, for contributing this most relevant information!



Many of us caregivers live with the thought that we may one day have to deal with dementia ourselves. New research data released at the 2016 Alzheimer’s Association International Conference July 24-28 in Toronto indicates that we may be able to exert some control over what happens as we age.

New research reported at the recent Alzheimer’s Association International Conference suggests that working at a job that requires complex thinking skills or involves mentoring other people may help protect us against Alzheimer’s disease.  In essence people who engage in a mentally stimulating lifestyle, which includes more formal education, complex work environments and engagement with people, may be associated with reduced cognitive decline and dementia as we age.

On Tuesday, July 26th, I had the privilege of speaking with Dr. Heather Snyder, Ph.D., senior director of medical and scientific operations for the Alzheimer’s Association.  She oversees the Association’s international research grant projects, the mechanisms through which the Association funds research applications.

To watch my interview with Dr. Snyder, click here and then click on Dr. Snyder’s photo.

The Alzheimer’s Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer’s care, support and research.  Their mission is to eliminate Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research, to provide and enhance care and support for all affected, and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health.  Their vision is a world without Alzheimer’s disease.

To access more information about research reported at the Alzheimer’s International Conference in Toronto, go to http://www.alz.org.

For many of us who have had one or more family members afflicted with dementia, we carry within our psyche the realization that we may one day have to deal with this condition in our own lives.

While on holiday with family at the New Jersey shore, I read with great interest a message from Miriam Rule, Promotions Officer at the University of Tasmania, about a free online course on preventing dementia.

The course entitled, Massive Open Online Course on ‘Preventing Dementia’, is a FREE five-week fully online course that draws on the latest scientific evidence, as well as the expertise of leading researchers in dementia prevention, to outline and discuss the key risk factors for dementia that are potentially modifiable.

The MOOC has over 70,000 participants from around the world.  MOOC is an acronym for Massive Open Online Course – a recent global educational development that has been embraced by key universities and learning institutions around the world, such as the University of Tasmania through its Wicking Dementia Research and Education Centre.

What really caught my eye when perusing the course brochure is that latest research estimates that approximately a third of dementia cases may be preventable by attending to potentially modifiable risk factors.  This is a great opportunity to learn from home at your own pace and engage with a community of participants from across the globe without exams or assignments.

The course actually began on July 12, but I believe you will still be able to register and garner much useful information by joining the class before its second session scheduled for July 19.

Click here to access the course brochure and register.

Our thanks to Miriam Rule for informing us of this awesome opportunity.




Around 18 million Americans suffer from dysphagia, a swallowing disorder, which can make every meal and sip of water feel like drowning, as the disorder makes swallowing difficult.  The main risk is aspirating or inhaling food/liquid into the airway and lungs, which then can cause pneumonia.  These individuals must rely on thickened liquids, but options are limited and often unappealing.  As a result more than 200,000 short-term hospital stay patients with dysphagia are discharged with dehydration each year.

I well remember my mom’s reaction to the thickened drinks served on her nursing home tray.

In the brief video below I am pleased to have you meet Jennifer Baquet, CCC-SLP, a senior clinician with Language Fundamentals, which provides services at the Amsterdam Nursing Home in New York City.  Jennifer was part of a team at Amsterdam that helped develop and implement an innovative dining service program for patients with dysphagia.

They created new and popular drink flavors like kiwi strawberry, and even were able to serve broths or a resident’s own favorite tea.

Click here to watch the video.

The two suggested websites for creative drink recipes are http://Thick-It.com and the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association at http://www.asha.org.





Glad to be Back!


You who have been regular visitors to Memories from My Life know that I have gone through a dry season of no new content for quite some time.  I want to express appreciation for your understanding over the past several months since my husband’s sudden passing.  His death on March 19th after our relationship of nearly 50 years left me with a heartache that at times has seemed unbearable.  Spiritual strength along with the loving support of family and close friends has helped me get through.

Ours was not a perfect marriage;  we had good times and the not so goods.  But we shared life together, the mountaintops and the valleys.

Through this period of reflection I have invested in one-on-one grief counseling.  Through my counselor I was referred to the book, The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman.  In the book the author talks about the five common ways love is shared between partners:  1) through words of affirmation; 2) through sharing quality time; 3) through receiving gifts; 4) through acts of service; and 5) physical touch.  I learned that sometimes the way one partner shows his/her love may not be what his partner would like to receive and vice versa.  How I wish I had know about this book earlier in my marriage.

On a brighter note I am privileged to let you know that Memories from My Life has again this year been recognized in 2016 as being one of the Top 25 Alzheimer’s Blogs by Healthline.com!

I would highly encourage you to subscribe to Healthline’s flagship newsletter, Your Guide to Wellness.  As the fastest growing consumer health information site — with 65 million monthly visitors — Healthline’s mission is to be your most trusted ally in your pursuit of health and well-being.

Along with being a goldmine for health information to all ages, Healthline publishes real stories from real people.  A few examples follow:

–  What it means to have a parent with bipolar disorder…

–  Managing depression after divorce:  What you can do…

–  How yoga can impact migraine relief…

–  Parenting:  How to take full advantage of summer with your kids…

–  Pregnancy:  7 tips for coping with anxiety during pregnancy…

Go to:  http://www.Healthline.com