6 Stages Of Alzheimer’s: How To Enhance Cognitive Ability?

enhance cognitive ability

6 Stages Of Alzheimer’s: How To Enhance Cognitive Ability?

Alzheimer’s disease, a progressive neurodegenerative disorder, is characterized by a continuum of cognitive ability decline that unfolds across seven stages, from preclinical to end-stage Alzheimer’s. Understanding how symptoms evolve and manifest at each stage is crucial for caregivers, healthcare professionals, and individuals affected by the disease. 

In this article, we delve into the cognitive ability decline associated with Alzheimer’s disease, mapping the progression of symptoms across the seven stages.

Mapping The Cognitive Ability Decline Tracking

Preclinical Stage: Silent Changes in the Brain

The preclinical stage of Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by subtle changes in the brain, including the accumulation of abnormal proteins such as beta-amyloid and tau before symptoms become apparent. While individuals in this stage may not exhibit noticeable cognitive ability decline, biomarker studies and neuroimaging techniques can detect early signs of Alzheimer’s pathology. 

Common biomarkers include elevated levels of beta-amyloid in cerebrospinal fluid and abnormal patterns of tau deposition on positron emission tomography (PET) scans.

Research shows that people with high folate levels have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s. Therefore, folic acid supplements have a certain supporting effect on neurological health. In addition, vitamin B12 and D levels often affect brain health.

Resveratrol is a plant polyphenol commonly found in grapes and red wine. It has antioxidant properties and anti-inflammatory effects. It can scavenge free radicals and reduce oxidative stress, thus protecting nerve cells from damage. It regulates the expression of inflammatory mediators, reduces neuroinflammation and apoptosis, and improves cognitive ability damage by increasing SIRT1 levels.

Pyrroloquinoline quinone PQQ, a vitamin-like compound, protects against Alzheimer’s disease by protecting nerve cells and improving neurocognitive function. It also affects the production and release of various neurotransmitters, such as acetylcholine, dopamine, and glutamate, thereby improving the functional state of the brain.

One study found that older adults who took pyrroloquinoline quinone PQQ for 12 weeks experienced improvements in memory, concentration, and thinking speed. Another study found improvements in cognitive ability in Alzheimer’s disease patients who took PQQ for eight weeks.

In addition, in multiple animal and human studies, 10 to 20 mg of Pyrroloquinoline Quinone has improved mental processing and memory. However, combining PQQ with CoQ10 may yield greater benefits than either nutrient alone.

Mild Cognitive Impairment: Subtle Changes in Memory and Thinking

Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) represents the earliest symptomatic stage of Alzheimer’s disease, where individuals experience subtle but measurable cognitive decline beyond what is expected for their age. Common symptoms include:

  • Forgetfulness and difficulty recalling recent events or conversations.
  • Challenges with word finding and verbal expression.
  • Mild impairment in executive function tasks such as planning, organization, and problem-solving. While individuals with MCI may still function independently in their daily lives, they are at increased risk of progressing from Alzheimer’s disease to dementia.

Early Stage Alzheimer’s Disease: Progressive Memory Loss and Cognitive Impairment

In the early stage of Alzheimer’s disease, cognitive ability decline becomes more pronounced, with individuals experiencing progressive memory loss and impairment in multiple domains of cognitive function. Common symptoms include:

  • Difficulty remembering newly learned information or recent events.
  • Language challenges include finding the right words or following a conversation.
  • Impaired visuospatial skills, leading to difficulties with navigation and orientation.
  • Changes in mood and behavior, like increased irritability or apathy. While people may still perform activities of daily living independently, they may need help with complex tasks and decision-making.

Moderate Stage: Decline in Daily Functioning and Executive Function

In the moderate stage of Alzheimer’s disease, cognitive decline becomes more severe, and individuals require increasing assistance with daily activities and decision-making. Common symptoms include:

  • Progressive memory loss, with individuals forgetting significant details about their personal history, family members, or recent events.
  • Difficulty performing tasks of daily living independently, such as dressing, bathing, and meal preparation.
  • Impaired executive function leads to challenges with planning, organization, and judgment.
  • Behavioral and psychological symptoms, like agitation, aggression, and wandering. While individuals may still recognize familiar faces and environments, their cognitive and functional impairments significantly impact their ability to live independently.

Moderately Severe Alzheimer’s disease: Severe Cognitive Decline and Loss of Independence

In the moderately severe stage of Alzheimer’s disease, cognitive decline is profound, and individuals require extensive assistance with all aspects of daily living. Common symptoms include:

  • Severe memory loss, with individuals unable to recognize family members or recall significant events from their past.
  • Impaired language abilities, including difficulty speaking, understanding, or processing verbal information.
  • Motor deficits include difficulty walking, maintaining balance, or performing coordinated movements.
  • Incontinence and loss of bowel and bladder control. While individuals may still demonstrate moments of clarity and emotional connection, their cognitive and functional impairments severely limit their independence and life quality.

Severe Stage: End-Stage Cognitive Decline and Functional Dependence

In the severe stage of Alzheimer’s disease, cognitive decline is profound, and individuals can’t communicate or perform basic activities of daily living independently. Common symptoms include:

  • Complete memory loss, with individuals unable to recognize familiar faces, places, or objects.
  • Loss of language abilities, like the ability to speak, understand, or express oneself verbally.
  • Motor deficits include difficulty swallowing, maintaining posture, or controlling movements.
  • Dependence on others for all aspects of care, including feeding, bathing, and toileting. While individuals may still exhibit emotional responses and reactions, their cognitive and functional impairments severely limit their ability to interact with their environment or engage in meaningful activities.

Alpha GPC, full name α-glycerophosphocholine, is a compound naturally found in the human body. It is also an important component of cell membranes. According to the “cholinergic damage hypothesis,” the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease is related to acetylcholine deficiency. Alpha GPC is particularly abundant in the brain and is the precursor of acetylcholine. It acts as a choline donor, aiding in synthesizing acetylcholine and phosphatidylcholine, essential for brain signaling.

In a two-year, double-blind trial of Alzheimer’s disease, patients who took both an alpha-GPC supplement and a therapeutic drug were more effective at improving cognitive ability and other clinical measures than those who took the drug alone. Human trials show alpha-GPC supports healthy cognitive function at all ages, including learning and behavior in children, attention and word recall in young adults, and memory, learning, mood, and social skills in middle-aged and older adults.

Phosphatidylcholine and phosphatidylserine are both important phospholipids in brain structure. They may aid cognitive skills.

Phosphatidylcholine is the biosynthetic precursor of acetylcholine. It is also an important component of cell membranes. It maintains the fluidity and integrity of cell membranes. It is very important for the transmission of nerve signals.

Phosphatidylserine PS can increase the number of brain synapses and the fluidity of brain cell membranes, affect the transmission of chemical information in the brain, and support brain cells storing and reading data. It reverses age-related memory impairment and is particularly effective at improving learning and memory of names. It promotes glucose metabolism in brain cells and makes brain cells more active. In addition, PS encourages the release of neurotransmitters such as serotonin, norepinephrine, dopamine, and acetylcholine, thereby speeding up communication between brain cells.


Mapping the cognitive ability decline associated with Alzheimer’s disease across the seven stages provides valuable insights into the progression of symptoms and their impact on individuals and caregivers.

By understanding how symptoms evolve and manifest at each stage, caregivers, healthcare professionals, and individuals affected by Alzheimer’s disease can better anticipate and address the changing needs and challenges associated with the disease. 

Early detection, personalized care plans, and access to support services and resources are essential for optimizing outcomes and enhancing the quality of life for people living with Alzheimer’s disease and caregiving.

In addition to the treatments mentioned earlier, many dietary supplements or nootropic ingredients on the market have received widespread attention for their cognitive-enhancing benefits. For example, PQQ, Alpha GPC, Citicoline, Phosphatidylcholine, Phosphatidylserine, Coenzyme Q10, Acetyl L-carnitine, Huperzine A, etc. are all good adjuvants for enhancing the cognitive ability of patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Creatine, a well-known fitness star ingredient, has also been found to positively impact short-term memory and executive function, especially for vegetarians since creatine is primarily found in meat and fish.

The cognitive ability market will be a growing trend, as demand will not be limited to people with Alzheimer’s disease. Nutri Avenue will also serve as a professional to help major health brands launch natural, safe, and effective products to meet cognitive needs.

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