Against dementia and Parkinson’s: it is healthy to eat the brains of dead relatives
Eat the brains of relatives. It might seem like a Hannibal Lecter-style menu, and instead the scientists found that eating the brains of deceased relatives could help to make individuals immune to dementia. The study was conducted on a tribe in Papua New Guinea, where members of the community were able to ward off disease. To make them immune, according to the team of British scientists and New Guinea, who published the results of their research in Nature, just the custom of eating the brains of the dead during the funeral ceremonies.
The members of the Fore tribe have shown that it has developed a strong resistance to disturbance of Kuru, a degenerative disorder endemic rare and deadly compared to BSE in cattle (the so-called “mad cow disease”).
The disease has reached its peak in 1950, hitting 2% of the population every year. In survivors it was identified gene ‘resistance prion’, which inhibits protein from mutate and form polymers that damage the brain. The gene also immunizes against other neurological diseases, such as Parkinson’s.