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Is It Possible To Ward Off Dementia With Diet?

Dementia is something that more and more people are suffering from as the population ages. Currently, 36 million people have dementia worldwide, and 10 percent of the population is expected to suffer from it at some point. Dementia deeply affects patients and their loved ones, which is why preventative measures should be held in high regard.

While many researchers are trying to prevent dementia with medicine and procedures, you may actually be able to reduce the risk with a better diet.

Mediterranean Diet for Dementia

In a study published in Neurology, it was discovered that individuals who followed a Mediterranean diet (high in fish, low in red meat) were 19 percent less likely to develop dementia. Ironically, nutrition is not often a part of a dementia preventive measure by modern medicine.

Diet Plus Exercise for Decreased Dementia

In another study, published in The Lancet, researchers put half of 1,260 study participants aged 60 to 77, with increased risk factors of dementia, on a healthy diet, along with strength training, cognitive exercises and aerobic activity. The participants were also required to lose 10 percent of their body weight while on the study.

Two years later, the participants were tested and it was found that the group who had the healthy diet and exercise did 25 percent better on their test scores than those who did not. They also had the ability to organize their thoughts 83 percent better than the control group. In addition, the processing speed of the healthy group was 150 percent that of the control group.

Lisa Moskovitz, MS, RD, founder of New York Nutrition Group says, “Cognitive decline is a serious issue that affects a large percentage of the elderly population, but fortunately, there is more and more evidence finding effective strategies for prevention—especially proper nutrition.” Many individuals would rather keep a sharp mind than a fit body as they age.

The key link between the right diet and decreased dementia risk is reducing inflammation. Inflammation of the body and brain cause many health issues, including cancers and memory loss. That is why it is important to eat antioxidant rich foods and foods that are anti-inflammatory, such as omega-3 fatty acids and berries.

While there is no guarantee that you can avoid dementia or Alzheimer’s altogether, a healthy diet goes a long way to prevent health issues. Start eating healthy now to ward off your dementia risks. You only get one brain, so take care of it now with the right nutrition.

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Used under Creative Commons Licensing courtesy of Jonathan Rolande

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