Restaurateur B. Smith Reveals She Has Alzheimer’s

Former model and restaurateur Barbara Smith, better known to her fans as B. Smith, has revealed that she has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.

Smith, 64, has been called “the black Martha Stewart because of her wide range of home-decor, restaurant and lifestyle enterprises YouTube Preview Image.

In 1976 she became one of the first African American models on the cover of Mademoiselle magazine. Ten years later, she opened the first of three B. Smith restaurants: two in New York and one, which closed last year, in Washington, D.C.’s Union Station.

Her 1995 book, B. Smith’s Entertaining and Cooking for Friends, was among the first on entertaining by a black author. She has hosted TV and radio shows, has a line of home goods sold in Bed, Bath & Beyond, and has even acted in off-Broadway plays.

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But about four years ago she began having problems remembering things and answering questions, she told CBS News.

B. Smith, interviewed by AARP in 2010A brain scan by neurologists at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York revealed widespread amyloid, a sticky protein that damages nerves and is present in Alzheimer’s patients.

Although Alzheimer’s affects more than 5 million Americans, Smith is part of a small group of those under age 65 who have been diagnosed with early-onset  disease. Up to 5 percent of Alzheimer’s patients — about 200,000 Americans — are diagnosed before 65, according to the Alzheimer’s Association.

In the interview that will air on June 15 on “CBS Sunday Morning, Smith could not recall the date, month or year. “Things like that make me very sad, she said with tears in her eyes.

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Still, she remains upbeat. “I’m going to do my best to make it work out for me and for as many people as I can possibly help, too, she said.

Perhaps her tweet Thursday night, June 5, 2014, said it best: “The B. Smith recipe for getting through tough times — equal measures of faith, hope, courage and love. Season with style and elegance. — B. Smith @BSmithstyle

Photo: AARP

 

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2 comments
BarbieAnnAuthor
BarbieAnnAuthor 5pts

Very sad indeed. My husband has Dementia ( Pick Disease) and is currently in a nursing home. He is 63 he will be 64 in August. he started showing signs of it in his late 50's, so he is a young dementia. Dementia/Alzheimer's does run in his family. I agree with Menschmedia, where there could be a connection to diabetes. I believe i read somewhere where Alzheimer's is considered diabetes of the brain. God bless b. smith for bringing attention to this very devastating illness, and I hope that the progression can be halted so no more damage can happen to her brain. I do believe that there is hope on the horizon. One thing that I and my adult children try to do is eat healthy foods and live healthy lifestyles. myself my son and daughter who still live with me have become vegetarians and we have seen a tremendous difference in our state of health. my oldest son who is out on his own, also try's to live healthfully and when he gets sick he visits an alternative doctor. peace and love.