Could Maple Syrup Help to Fight Alzheimer’s Disease?

bottle of maple syrupOur estate planning attorneys were delighted to hear about a new Canadian study which indicated that it may be possible to prevent or reverse Alzheimer’s disease and other degenerative neurological conditions with a natural compound found in maple syrup. This compound is believed to halt the forming of two toxic proteins that have been linked to Alzheimer’s. However, certain scientists have stated that due to its very high sugar content, it is not wise to use maple syrup to boost brain health or prevent cognitive decline. These experts recommend following a diet featuring fish, berries, olive oil, nuts, vegetables and poultry, which they say can reduce a person’s risk of Alzheimer’s by as much as 50 percent.

The maple syrup study was conducted by Canadian scientists who discovered that a highly refined extract derived from standard maple syrup reduced the proliferation of specific types of proteins. These are the same proteins found in the brains of those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative conditions.

The Krembil Research Institute of the University of Toronto, where the study was completed, indicated in their final report that a maple syrup extract halted what is referred to by researchers as the “folding of two important brain proteins.” Medical experts have found that this folding leads to Alzheimer’s disease. Phenolic-enriched extracts of maple syrup were used in the study, which was conducted in a laboratory. Results of the study showed neuroprotective effects similar to those seen with a compound found in red wine, called resveratrol. The latter is also believed to halt the progress of Alzheimer’s disease.

However, the study did not involve human subjects, and it was not completed with actual maple syrup, but rather with the aforementioned refined extract. For this reason, some researchers and health care professionals state that the detrimental effects of high sugar intake, such as the 14 grams of sugar per tablespoon found in maple syrup, are far too unhealthy to use on a regular basis until further research is completed involving humans. It is still unclear whether or not maple syrup in its standard form would have the same effect as the highly refine extract used in the study.

Our Orange County estate planning attorneys follow alzheimers research closely, and we’re always excited to share new findings. We’ll be sure to keep a close eye on this story, and report any further developments.

Elderly Man Chooses Holiday Inn Over Retirement Home

Holiday Inn ExteriorOur estate planning attorneys in Orange County have worked with hundreds of retirees who are searching for ways to save money and lower their cost of living. We often talk to folks who are planning for their long term care, and are shocked at how expensive it can be.

For that reason, we were elated to read the story of 64-year-old Terry Robison, who chose an innovative alternative to a personal care home or nursing facility when he chose to make Holiday Inn his primary residence.

In Robison’s social media posts, he compared the daily cost of residing at a Holiday Inn with the per-day cost of a retirement home, and Holiday Inn won! Robinson stated that with his senior discount, living at the popular hotel chain cost less than $60 per day, while the average senior home he looked into cost over three times that much, at $180 per day. Robinson stated that the annual cost to live at a Holiday Inn was approximately $21,900 with his senior discount.

One of the retirement homes he was looking into came with a price tag of $68,620 for the year. According to Forbes,the latter amount is typical for the price of a retirement home, with some facilities charging as much as $100,000 annually. Robinson also noted the long wait most seniors experience before being admitted to a good retirement home, as opposed to the time it takes to make a simple reservation.

Robison said that he enjoyed being treated as a customer, rather than a patient, and made a point to mention amenities, including a lounge, workout room, swimming pool and spa. He also indicated that he enjoyed the option of staying anywhere in the country, as virtually all states have Holiday Inn hotels with a certain number of amenities and services.

In 2018, Dan Brewer wrote that he was not surprised that Terry Robison chose a Holiday Inn for his retirement, as some senior homes cost as much as $6000 per month. Brewer works for a business that invests in private-pay facilities for retirees. It remains to be seen if this interesting alternative to traditional senior facilities will become a trend in the future.


What is a Revocable Trust?

elderly couple with documentsWhat is a Revocable Trust?

A revocable trust is a type of trust that may be canceled or altered during the lifetime of the grantor. The property is given to the beneficiaries only after the death of the grantor, at which point the revocable trust becomes irrevocable. Due to the fact that it may be altered at any time before the grantor’s death, it is regarded as part of his or her estate. This type of arrangement offers income and flexibility to the living grantor, as he or she is able to adjust the trust’s provisions and earn income from the trust. An estate planning attorney draws up the revocable trust according to the grantor’s wishes, and such a trust is one of many tools used to create an appropriate estate plan.

Characteristics of a Revocable Trust

A revocable trust holds property or money for the benefit of someone else. The assets of the trust may change on a regular basis due to the appreciation or depreciation of the trustee’s investments or fluctuations in his or her expenses. However, the collective assets comprise the principle of the trust fund and the person or persons benefiting from the trust are the beneficiaries.

Benefits of a Revocable Trust

Because there is significant flexibility with a revocable trust, if the grantor develops health problems or other concerns, the grantor’s chosen manager can be given control over the principal.

Among other advantages of a revocable trust is that proceeds can be distributed according to the grantor’s wishes, whatever they may be. This offers great flexibility to the grantor. For example, the trust can be distributed all at one time, divided into separate trusts for different beneficiaries, divided into unequal parts, or held for grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Similarly, certain family members may be excluded from receiving anything at the time of distribution, if the grantor so desires.

In some families, there may be a child who is not capable of making appropriate spending decisions or responsible investments. If this is the case, that particular child can be given an income for life through the revocable trust, but never have access to the assets, while other children may acquire their share outright.

Should the son or daughter of a grantor have an unfortunate marriage, a revocable trust can also be set up in such a way that the assets never become marital property, but rather remain in the family. The beneficiary may receive a monthly or yearly income from the trust, but cannot withdraw assets as long as he or she remains married to the person the grantor finds questionable.

Any time probate can be avoided, it is typically considered a great advantage. At the death of the grantor, all property in a revocable trust bypasses probate, which saves a significant amount of time and expense for the beneficiaries. Additionally, any property that must pass through probate automatically becomes a matter of public record, as opposed to a trust that keeps the transfer process private.

After the Grantor’s Death

When the grantor of a revocable trust passes away, the trust changes entirely: it immediately becomes irrevocable. It then dictates the way in which the late grantor’s assets must be distributed. The distribution process may continue on into the future for subsequent beneficiaries named by the grantor when he or she still lived.

Contact an estate planning attorney in Orange County or Corona can if you would like more information about possibly adding a revocable trust to your estate plan.