Scientists from Rush University Medical Center and elsewhere found that eating the MIND and Mediterranean diets is linked to fewer Alzheimer’s signs in the brain.
Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by several signs in the brain, including Beta-amyloid plaques: These are clumps of protein that build up between the brain’s nerve cells.
Neurofibrillary tangles: These are twisted fibers of a protein called tau that build up inside brain cells.
Inflammation: The brain’s immune cells become activated, leading to inflammation that can damage brain cells.
Loss of connections between brain cells: Alzheimer’s disease damages the connections between brain cells, affecting communication and leading to cell death.
Brain shrinkage: Over time, Alzheimer’s disease can cause the brain to shrink, leading to a decrease in brain function.
These signs can lead to cognitive decline, memory loss, and other symptoms associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
It’s important to note that the signs of Alzheimer’s disease may not be visible until many years after the disease has started to develop in the brain.
The MIND diet and the Mediterranean diet are both dietary patterns that have been associated with a reduced risk of cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease.
MIND diet: MIND stands for “Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay.”
The MIND diet is a combination of the Mediterranean and DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diets and emphasizes foods that are good for brain health, such as leafy green vegetables, berries, nuts, whole grains, fish, poultry, and olive oil.
The diet limits foods that are thought to be harmful to brain health, such as red meat, butter and margarine, cheese, pastries, and fried or fast food.
Mediterranean diet: The Mediterranean diet is a traditional eating pattern that emphasizes whole, plant-based foods, healthy fats, and lean proteins.
The diet is rich in fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, and olive oil, and includes moderate amounts of fish, poultry, and dairy products. Red meat, sugar, and processed foods are limited.
Both diets have been associated with a reduced risk of cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease.
The current study looked at how the MIND and Mediterranean diets might affect the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and slow cognitive decline.
The researchers wanted to know more about how these diets might impact the brain, so they looked at the brains of older adults who had passed away.
The study involved 581 participants who had completed a food questionnaire and had their brains examined after they passed away.
The researchers used linear regression models to compare the MIND and Mediterranean diets with Alzheimer’s disease pathology in the brain.
The study also looked at how certain dietary components might impact Alzheimer’s disease pathology.
The results showed that both the MIND and Mediterranean diets were associated with less Alzheimer’s disease pathology in the brain, specifically with a less beta-amyloid load.
The study found that people who ate more green leafy vegetables had less Alzheimer’s disease pathology compared to those who ate fewer green leafy vegetables.
The researchers concluded that the MIND and Mediterranean diets could potentially help reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, slow cognitive decline, and have a positive impact on brain health.
The study also found that green leafy vegetables could be an important part of a brain-healthy diet.
The research was published in Neurology and was conducted by Puja Agarwal et al.
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