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Fatty food memories 'linked to Alzheimer's disease'

Fatty food memories 'linked to Alzheimer's disease'
29th April 2009

A link has been established between the memory of eating fatty foods and the wider ramifications of Alzheimer's disease.

Dr Danielle Piomelli, a project researcher from the University of California at Irvine, stated that oleoylethanolamide (OEA), a compound of oleic acids from fatty food, is able to send messages to the brain that it is full.

It is also believed to help humans remember rich meals more, allowing them to return to the area they originally found their meal in eras gone by, acting as an important survival mechanism in early humans - something she said makes perfect sense as an evolutionary trait.

This, in turn, has raised many questions as to how the link could establish a previously-unseen development in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, which is notable for patients losing their memory.

Dr Piomelli explained: "By helping mammals remember where and when they have eaten a fatty meal, OEA's memory-enhancing activity seems to have been an important evolutionary tool for early humans and other mammals."

This week, scientists at the University of British Columbia noted that anti-inflammatory drugs with proton pump inhibitors may be the way forward when it comes to delaying the effects of Alzheimer's disease.

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