Several factors of an unhealthy lifestyle can increase the risk of dementia. On the other hand, if you live a healthy lifestyle, you can reduce the risk.
That diet in the prevention of dementia could play an important role has long been suspected in research. Proper nutrition and a healthy lifestyle could even be used in a targeted manner to keep the risk of disease as low as possible.
Previous studies examining the impact of certain diets on brain health analyzed typically had too few data or participants, and few considered an individual’s genetic makeup. A new major study is now filling this gap and has shown that a very specific type of diet can make a particular contribution to protecting the aging brain.
New study shows: Mediterranean diet could reduce dementia risk
In the Study, published in the journal BMC Medicin, the researchers examined the genetic and nutritional data of 60,000 UK adults aged 60 and over, following them for an average of nine years. Study participants were rated once for the extent of adherence to a Mediterranean diet and for their individual at risk of dementia.
Over the nine years, 882 cases of dementia were reported. The amazing thing: Those who followed a strict Mediterranean diet had a 23 percent lower risk of developing dementia than those who ate differently – regardless of their diet genetic predisposition.
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The results could be particularly important for people at risk. “This is one of the largest studies in this field of research,” study leader Oliver Shannon, a professor at the University of Newcastle, told the online magazine WebMD. “We were able to find that even in people with a higher genetic risk, a more Mediterranean diet reduces the likelihood of developing dementia.” Research to reduce the risk of dementia is an “important priority” for public health.
Diet and dementia: not yet fully clarified together
However, according to David Curtis, honorary professor at the UCL Genetics Institute in London, a clear connection between cause and effect cannot be seen in the study. The results could also be due to an overall healthier lifestyle, he told CNN. “If there is an impact of Nourishment then I think it’s more likely to have an impact on cardiovascular health in general, and thus more likely on dementia due to vascular disease,” Curtis said.
Susan Mitchell, head of the charity Alzheimer’s Research UK, said in a statement CNNwhich there is currently no patent remedy for dementia prevention There was, however, “a wealth of evidence that a healthy, balanced diet can help reduce the risk of cognitive decline.” In any case, further investigations are needed to further analyze the possible connection.
Mediterranean diet: which foods are included?
Die mediterranean diet relies in large part on whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts and legumes. A lot of fish is eaten and mainly cooked with extra virgin olive oil. Oily fish in particular has a high proportion of Omega-3 fatty acids, which are said to strengthen the brain and are associated with anti-cancer properties. As part of the diet, you consume little meat and instead use eggs, dairy products and poultry. Sweets and other foods made from refined sugar or flour are rarely if ever eaten.
Also read: Dementia: symptoms, course and therapy of the disease
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