EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


June 20, 2014

Cookbook author fighting Alzheimer's with food


The dinner, at which Wolfert will be a guest, is inspired by her achievements in food and her work encouraging people to get tested if they notice early signs of memory loss, says Russell Moore, who is hosting the event at his Camino restaurant.

“The fact that she is speaking out about Alzheimer’s is just really wonderful,” says Moore, whose own mother died of Alzheimer’s. Moore, who got to know Wolfert first through her books and then in person, isn’t surprised to see Wolfert taking on Alzheimer’s full-tilt. “It’s her approach; she’s all or nothing,” he says.

For Wolfert, the first signs of trouble were “so many little things,” like reading a book or watching a TV show and then immediately forgetting it. Then it got to the point that she’d read a paragraph in a newspaper and couldn’t remember what she’d just read.

She got tested and diagnosed. Then she began researching what kinds of foods might help or hurt mental acuity, using the same type of determination she once used to hunt down the best and most specific way of making the foods of the Mediterranean and Southwest France.

Some studies have suggested that a heart-healthy diet may lower risks for Alzheimer’s disease or slow the rate of age-related mental decline, but evidence is mixed and inconclusive.

Wolfert spent almost a year perfecting a smoothie recipe which she makes in batches every two weeks.

It’s quite the process, starting with bunches of kale and other leafy greens, lightly boiled, and going on to include blueberries, coconut and MCT oil (a type of oil generally made by processing coconut and palm kernel oils), protein powder, cinnamon, and a host of other ingredients.

“It doesn’t taste bad but it doesn’t taste great, either,” is Wolfert’s review. “I don’t care. I want to get it out of the way so I can have a great and memorable lunch with a hunk of protein, vegetables, salad, some aged goat cheese and a short glass of red wine.”

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