Bredesen Protocol

Ridgway Center for Whole Health

Functional Medicine Specialist & Primary Care Medicine located in Ridgway, CO

More than 5 million Americans have Alzheimer’s disease, according to the Alzheimer's Association®. Like many other practitioners, the team at Ridgway Center for Whole Health knows that traditional Alzheimer’s treatments haven’t been as effective as patients and their families have hoped. That’s why they’re exploring alternative therapies at their office in Ridgway, Colorado. As a certified Bredesen Protocol™ practitioner, Shirley Olson, NP-C, IFMCP, uses evidence-based therapies to prevent and treat cognitive decline. To learn more, call Ridgway Center for Whole Health or book an appointment online today.

Bredesen Protocol Q & A

What is Alzheimer’s disease?

Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive condition in which brain cells degenerate and ultimately die. This disease results in severe memory loss, low cognition, and language difficulties. Over time, Alzheimer’s disease affects your ability to perform certain tasks and live independently without help. 

While there’s currently no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, medications can improve some of its behavioral symptoms to slow the progression of cognitive decline. Unfortunately, these medications simply mask and delay the symptoms of Alzheimer’s rather than treating the underlying cause of the disease.

What is the Bredesen Protocol?

Developed by Dale Bredesen, MD, the Bredesen Protocol is a functional approach to Alzheimer’s treatment. Instead of masking the symptoms with medications that only delay the inevitable, the Bredesen Protocol aims to find metabolic imbalances in each individual patient that may negatively impact their cognitive function.

The Bredesen Protocol has five main goals to help reverse the effects of cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s patients:

  • Reduce inflammation and infections
  • Minimize levels of toxins
  • Restore lost synapses in the brain
  • Reverse insulin resistance
  • Eliminate hormone imbalances

Often called the ReCODE protocol, this plan is completely personalized and adapted to suit every patient’s unique needs and goals in treatment.

What can I expect from the Bredesen Protocol?

The goal of the Bredesen Protocol is to identify imbalances in your body that cause cognitive decline. This comprehensive approach to treatment looks different for every patient, but typically includes changes to your diet, lifestyle habits, and intake of both supplements and probiotics. Some of the most common changes include:


The Bredesen Protocol encourages an anti-inflammatory diet rich in foods like olive oil, mushrooms, tea, seaweed, wild-caught fish, avocados, artichokes, leafy greens, lemons, leeks, beets, and kimchi. For many patients, this diet excludes coffee, grass-fed beef, dairy, high-glycemic fruits, grains, and fish that contain high levels of mercury. The Bredesen Protocol may even recommend fasting to increase insulin sensitivity.


The Microbiome aspect of the Bredesen Protocol focuses on probiotics and prebiotics, such as B. longum, B. lactis, and L. brevis.


Supplements and herbs are a vital part of the Bredesen Protocol to improve cognition and reduce inflammation. Some of the most common supplements and herbs you may take include citicoline, coffee fruit extract, ALCAR, vitamin C, vitamin B1, and vitamin K.

To schedule an appointment with a certified Bredesen Protocol practitioner, call Ridgway Center for Whole Health or book a visit online today.