• Project Title: Quantifying the Relationship Between Nutrition and Neurodegenerative Diseases

  • BASIS Advisor: David Calhoun

  • Internship Location: Inova Alexandria Hospital

  • Onsite Mentor: Dr. Alidad Arabshahi

According to the Alzheimer's Association, 8% of Asian Americans in the United States are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease. This is the lowest percentage an ethnic group faces with this disease. So what are they doing differently? The initial gut answer would be genetics, but that may not be the only factor causing this low rate. It is found that having a specific and appropriate diet can reduce the risk of Alzheimer's by 53%. Healthy fats, fibers, minimal alcohol, and vitamin A and C are found to help prevent this disease and some cultures consume more of these through their cultural diet. My Senior Project goal primarily consists of being able to relate how cultures and their food origins impact a patient’s life. There’s more to a patient than treating one part of the body based on what numbers say; they must be looked at in whole. Someone’s life experiences, their culture, and their health all need to come into consideration, and I want to investigate if these questions about cultural diet are the best approach to staying healthy. Homeopathic and osteopathic are controversial topics of medicine, and through my research I hope to inform others more on these topics and to provide further information on the possibilities of herbal medicine. My research can help me, along with others, understand how much more there is to uncover in the medical world.