Foods That Are Risk Factors For Alzheimers
Many foods in the Western diet have been identified as risk factors for dementia and Alzheimers, including red and processed meats, refined grains, sweets, and desserts. Excess alcohol intake, saturated fatty acids, and foods with a high number of calories are also risk factors for Alzheimers. If you think that you or a loved one may be at risk for Alzheimers, work with your doctor on developing a healthier diet and nutrition plan that greatly reduces the risk.
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Foods That Fight Dementia And Alzheimers Disease
Dementia is a general term for a decline in mental ability due to disease or injury.
Alzheimers disease is the most common cause of dementia, accounting for 60-80% of cases.
Alzheimers is a progressive disease, meaning it gets worse over time.
Early symptoms of Alzheimers include forgetfulness and difficulty learning new information.
As the disease progresses, people with Alzheimers may experience delusions, hallucinations, and difficulty speaking and communicating.
Ultimately, they may lose the ability to recognize loved ones and care for themselves.
How can we fight Alzheimers disease?
There is no cure for Alzheimers, but there are treatments that can help to manage symptoms and slow the progression of the disease.
Also, eating certain foods that are known to promote brain health may help to prevent or delay the onset of dementia and Alzheimers disease.
Here are 5 evidence-based foods that may fight off dementia and Alzheimers disease:
In this article, well cover:
Eat A Healthy Low Carbohydrate Diet
Consider this like any organ in your body, your brain needs to be fed. Your brain needs more nutrients than any other organ. To function properly, it needs omega-3s, magnesium, vitamin D, B12 and so much more. If your diet is nutrient poor, so is your brain. If you are not eating a well rounded diet rich in vitamins, minerals and healthy fats, you may experience anxiety, depression, brain fog, memory loss, etc.
Id first like to address the healthy part of eating a healthy diet. So many people are confused about what constitutes a healthy diet. The simple answer is this: whole foods, foods without ingredient labels. Vegetables, proteins, nuts, seeds and fruits.
More specifically, the base of your diet should be vegetables like leafy greens like kale and collards, broccoli, cauliflower, onions, garlic, artichokes, etc. The more variety, the better.
Next, you want healthy fat. Healthy fats like olive oil, grass-fed butter or ghee, avocado oil, duck fat, lard, etc. You may have heard negative things about fats like lard because of the saturated fat content, but did you know that your brain is over 60% saturated fat? Did you know that your cell membranes are made up of saturated fat? Or that your hormones are driven by fat? Saturated fat has been wrongly vilified my friends. Without it, your brain would be scrambled eggs.
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Brain Exercises That Boost Memory
The study found that the MIND diet lowered the risk of Alzheimers disease by 53 percent.
Another exciting revelation is that you dont have to follow the diet strictly to enjoy its brain-boosting benefits. Even those who moderately follow the diet may have a 35 percent reduced risk for the disease, the authors note. Still, following it closely has an upside: Its comparable to being 7.5 years younger cognitively than people who dont follow the diet diligently, according to a June 2015 study published in Alzheimers & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimers Association.
In addition to reducing the risk of Alzheimers disease, the MIND diet can also reduce the risk of Parkinsons disease. A 2018 study published in The Journal of Nutrition, Health, and Aging found this way of eating cut the risk and delayed the progression of the disease among older people.
Because this diet is a hybrid of the Mediterranean diet and the DASH diet, you may also experience health benefits associated with these particular diets.
The DASH diet has been linked to reductions in hypertension, thereby diminishing the risk of stroke and heart attack, according to the Mayo Clinic. The National Institutes of Health have also endorsed the plan for heart health, as has U.S. News & World Report, which releases annual rankings on the best popular diets.
Diet And Dementia Risk
Changes in the brain can occur years before the first symptoms of Alzheimer’s appear. These early brain changes suggest a possible window of opportunity to prevent or delay dementia symptoms. Scientists are looking at many possible ways to do this, including drugs, lifestyle changes and combinations of these interventions. Unlike other risk factors for Alzheimers that we cant change, such as age and genetics, people can control lifestyle choices such as diet, exercise and cognitive training.
How could what we eat affect our brains? Its possible that eating a certain diet affects biological mechanisms, such as oxidative stress and inflammation, that underlie Alzheimers. Or perhaps diet works indirectly by affecting other Alzheimers risk factors, such as diabetes, obesity and heart disease. A new avenue of research focuses on the relationship between gut microbes tiny organisms in the digestive system and aging-related processes that lead to Alzheimers.
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Cognitive Impairment Versus Cognitive Decline
Lets take a moment to unpack these terms. Lets say you want to know what your risk is 10 years from now.
- Cognition is a shorthand way of saying thinking, memory, language, attention, visuospatial, and other mental abilities.
- Your risk of cognitive impairment is the risk that 10 years from now, your cognition will be worse than your peers.
- Your risk of cognitive is the risk that 10 years from now, your cognition will be worse than it is now.
Low To Moderate Amounts Of Alcohol
This is a somewhat controversial one since there are some risks associated with drinking alcohol, but multiple research studies demonstrated a cognitive benefit for those who drank light to moderate amounts of alcohol. Some of this may be related to the resveratrol in red wine, but other research found this benefit in other kinds of alcohol as well.
Keep in mind that there are some people who should never drink alcohol, such as alcoholics, those with Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome, and those for whom it will interact with their medications.
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Foods That Can Fight Dementia And Alzheimers Disease
Dementia and Alzheimers disease are thought to be caused by a combination of genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors including diet and nutrition. Health conditions such as high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, and obesity may also contribute to cognitive decline, and are often affected by the foods you eat. Practicing good nutrition and eating lots of healthy foods is shown to help reduce your risk of dementia and Alzheimers disease as you become older.
Here are 7 foods that can fight off cognitive decline and help you stay healthy as you age:
How Does The Mind Diet Work To Boost Brain Health
The MIND diet focuses on the intake of plant-based foods, and limiting the intake of animal products and foods high in saturated fat. The emphasis is on plants, and whats noteworthy is that this diet specifically urges a higher consumption of berries and green leafy vegetables.
Fueling up with flavonoid-rich produce may indeed benefit the mind. Blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries appear to prevent cognitive aging in women by up to two and a half years, according to an earlier study published in the Annals of Neurology. Likewise, theres a link between eating leafy green vegetables such as kale, spinach, and collard greens and lower inflammation and oxidative stress, two factors that are associated with Alzheimers disease, per a previous study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Both types of food are rich in antioxidants and can help reduce inflammation and oxidative stress.
Oxidative stress occurs when antioxidant defenses are low and the body cant fight toxic molecules called free radicals. This stress causes cell damage in the brain and throughout the body, and it has been linked with several diseases, including Alzheimers and cancer.
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Foods That Could Help Prevent Alzheimers And Dementia
Dementia is a syndrome characterized by a progressive deterioration in memory, thinking, behavior and the ability to perform everyday activities. Alzheimers disease is the most common form of dementia and is thought to make up 60 to 70 percent of cases. Dementia is devastating for the individual afflicted and for their family and friends, but although it is increasingly common, it is emphatically not a normal part of aging. There is much we can do to protect our brains health, with food being the most important environmental factor for your brain.
Eat Well To Prevent Alzheimers Disease
While its not possible to prevent Alzheimers disease in every case, you give yourself a fighting chance with a healthy lifestyle that contains all the right omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants for good brain health.
Overhauling your diet might just save you and your family from the difficulties that dementia brings.
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Nuts Whole Grains Legumes And Olive Oil
Nuts and seeds have been repeatedly linked to slower cognitive decline.
In one 2021 review of 22 studies on nut consumption involving nearly 44,000 people, researchers found that those at high risk of cognitive decline tended to have better outcomes if they ate more nuts specifically walnuts. However, the authors acknowledged some inconsistency among the studies and inconclusive evidence.
Another study, , looked at about 16,000 women ages 70 and up between 1995 and 2001. Researchers found that women who said they consumed at least five servings of nuts per week had better cognitive scores than those who did not eat nuts.
Whole grains, as well as legumes, like lentils and soybeans, also appear to have benefits for heart health and cognitive function. In one 2017 study of more than 200 people in Italy aged 65 and older, researchers found an association between consuming three servings of legumes per week and higher cognitive performance.
And olive oil, a main component of both the Mediterranean and MIND diets, has strong links with healthy cognitive aging. One 2022 study of more than 92,000 U.S. adults found that higher intakes of olive oil were associated with a 29 percent lower risk of dying from neurodegenerative disease and 8 percent to 34 percent lower risk of mortality overall when compared with those who never or rarely consumed olive oil.
Fried Foods And Fast Food
Fried foods and fast food round out the MIND diet’s list of unhealthy food groups. Limit your indulgence in fried food to no more than once a week for optimal brain health.
But even if you slip up on the diet from time to time, the researchers say it can still have benefits. Even “modest adherence” to the MIND diet measurably reduced a person’s chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease, and the longer you stick with it, the greater the benefits.
“People who eat this diet consistently over the years get the best protection,” said lead author Martha Clare Morris. “You’ll be healthier if you’ve been doing the right thing for a long time.”
First published on March 30, 2015 / 6:00 AM
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Healthy Oils Like Extra Virgin Olive Oil And Coconut Oil
Extra virgin olive oil and coconut oil are said to be beneficial towards fighting the effects of Alzheimers.
The medium-chain triglycerides present in coconut oil increase the level of ketone bodies in the blood, which work as alternative brain fuel and improve cognitive performance.
Extra-virgin olive oil contains oleo can, a phenolic compound that improves the production of key proteins and enzymes that break down amyloid plaques. Therefore, extra-virgin olive oil acts as a neuroprotective mechanism against Alzheimers disease.
While further research is required, there is strong anecdotal evidence for the benefits of both these oils incorporated into your cooking. As little as one tablespoon of coconut oil per day may help to improve cognitive functioning and memory, and
Dr Zoltan P Rona Md Msc
Dr. Zoltan P. Rona is a graduate of McGill University Medical School and has a Masters Degree in Biochemistry and Clinical Nutrition from the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut .He is the author of 11 books on natural medicine three of which are Canadian bestsellers, The Joy of Health , Return to the Joy of Health , and Childhood Illness and The Allergy Connection .He is co-author with Jeanne Marie Martin of The Complete Candida Yeast Guidebook and is medical editor of the Benjamin Franklin Award-winning Encyclopedia of Natural Healing .He has had a private medical practice in Toronto for the past 42 years, has appeared on radio and TV as well as lectured extensively in Canada and the U.S. Visit his website for appointments, call 764-8700 Office: 390 Steeles Ave. W. Unit 19, Thornhill, ON
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How Can You Prevent Dementia Naturally
There are five strands to Drs Sherzais plan: exercise regularly, reduce stress, improve sleep, challenge and engage the brain, and eat better. In their brilliant book, The Alzheimers Solution, they write:
- Physical exercise increases both the number of brain cells and the connection between them
- Chronic stress puts the brain in a state of high inflammation, causing structural damage and impairing its ability to clear harmful waste products
- Restorative sleep is essential for cognitive and overall health
- Higher education and other complex cognitive activities protect your brain against decline, even late in life
- Social support and meaningful, constant engagement with your community has an undeniable influence on the way your brain age
- Eating meat is bad for your brain. Vegetables, fruits, pulses, grains and healthy fats are what the brain requires to thrive
Foods For Dementia Prevention And Maintenance
If you knew that a proper Alzheimers diet could delay or even prevent the effects of dementia, wouldnt you want to take that seriously? Chances are the answer is yes, especially if Alzheimers disease runs in your family.
The toll that dementia takes on sufferers and those around them has medical researchers seeking out ways to prevent the diseases progression. Some of the research is showing that certain foods aid in brain health and retention of memory. Those foods could combat the effects of dementia.
Read on to learn the ten best foods for dementia prevention and maintenance.
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Consider Primehealths Prevention Program
We stand behind Dr. Dale Bredesens revolutionary KetoFLEX 12/3 diet program for patients with cognitive decline. We have seen it work wonders, particularly in combination with other beneficial lifestyle changes.
As more research is published on the KetoFLEX 12/3 diet, we cant wait for more professionals and caregivers to hear about this super effective diet plan.
How can you reverse dementia naturally? You can reverse dementia naturally with simple lifestyle and dietary changes. This mainly works in the very early stages of dementia and cognitive decline.
Sorting Brain Health Fact From Fiction
Suddenly, it seems, we are in the midst of an explosion of new information about how the brain ages, what keeps it sharp, and why it declines. And, just as suddenly, there are recommendations about what you should do to prevent Alzheimers. Sorting medical fact from fiction can be difficult.
Should we be vegetarian, vegan, or pescatarian? What about the paleolithic diet? Or the ketogenic one? Nutrition can be complicated, but eating for brain health is not. Brain Health Kitchen examines the science behind how food impacts the brain and gives recommendations based on the latest science.
As a physician, I am here to help you wade through the growing number of claims about how to protect your brain. My recommendations are based on evidence-based scientific studies. More information pours in each day from reliable medical journals about which factors help reduce Alzheimers risk, and which ones contribute to cognitive decline.
Instead of eliminating entire food groups or imposing a long list of rules regarding how we should eat, we only need to ask ourselves one question: Is it good for my brain or not?
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Cinnamon Sage Turmeric And Cumin
. These spices can all help to break up brain plaque and reduce inflammation of the brain which can cause memory issues. In addition to eating the foods listed above, youll want to decrease the risk of illnesses that can make your brain age such as obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and hypertension.
Other things to avoid are the toxins in your food, water, soil and environment, unnecessary stress, caffeine, sugar, drugs, alcohol, and sugar.
Encourage healthy decisions, conscientiousness, positive peer groups, a clean environment, exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, 8 hours of sleep, stress management and gratitude.
About Hayley Hobson:Elephant JournalIslaorganicsPilates StyleNatural HealthTriathlete
The Mediterranean And Mind Diets And Alzheimers
One diet that shows some promising evidence is the Mediterranean diet, which emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, fish, and other seafood unsaturated fats such as olive oils and low amounts of red meat, eggs, and sweets. A variation of this, called MIND incorporates the DASH diet, which has been shown to lower high blood pressure, a risk factor for Alzheimers disease.
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