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A New Alzheimer’s Diet to Keep in MIND

Posted by on Sunday, March 12th, 2017

 brain healthy foods for the Alzheimer's diet

A new Alzheimer’s diet called the MIND (Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay) diet may help to lower risks of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) by as much as 53%.

A recent Rush University Medical Center study funded by the National Institute on Aging aimed to discover if the MIND diet effected the risk of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD).  Martha Clare Morris, PhD, and colleagues developed the MIND diet which integrates foods from the Mediterranean diet and the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diets. 

The MIND diet is considered a combination of the Mediterranean and DASH diets, both of which have been shown in studies to lower the risk of high blood pressure, heart attack and stroke.  Some studies have found that the two diets may also help protect against Alzheimer’s dementia. 

The MIND diet was developed after compiling years of past research results about the therapeutic and adverse effects of various foods on brain health.   

For years, scientists have known that diet can have a big impact on heart health and now the evidence is stacking up that an increase of some foods and restriction of others can contribute to brain health.

The MIND Diet Study

The study of 900 people ages 58 to 98 participated in neurological testing and answered questionnaires about daily food consumption.  Those study group members who followed the MIND diet recommendations closely were found to test higher in cognitive functioning tests.  In fact, they exhibited the range of cognitive functioning of a person 7 and a half years younger.

The study results, published in the journal Alzheimer’s and Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association, revealed that AD risks were lowered by 53% in those who “adhered rigorously” to the diet and by 35% in the participants who followed the diet “moderately.”

One of the most exciting outcomes of the study was the fact that even those who only moderately followed the diet reduced their risk of AD by a third.   

Nutritional epidemiologist, Martha Clare Morris, PHD, the lead author of the MIND diet study, said “Diet appears to be just one of many factors that play into who gets the disease.” “Genetics and other factors like smoking, exercise and education also play a role, but the MIND diet helped slow the rate of cognitive decline and protect against Alzheimer’s regardless of other risk factors” said Morris.

Morris went on to explain the MIND diet is an easier diet to follow than the Mediterranean diet, which is comprised of a daily diet of several servings for fruits and vegetables as well as fish.  In comparison, the MIND diet simply lists 10 brain healthy foods and 5 foods to avoid, see Part 2 of the MIND diet for details on the specific foods on each list. 

For more easy to follow nutrition advice check out The Alzheimer’s Diet: A Step-by-Step Nutritional Approach to Memory Loss Prevention and Treatment, or visit theadplan.com to learn more about Neurologist, Dr. Richard Isaacson's 9 week diet plan and his cutting edge approach in the fight against AD in Alzheimer's Treatment | Alzheimer's Prevention: A Patient and Family Guide 2012 Edition. Also, sign up for the newsletter to get the latest updates in AD treatment and prevention news.

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