New research suggests that adopting certain diets can help improve heart health and reduce the risk of some forms of dementia.
Age is the most common risk factor for dementia, which means that people are more likely to develop a type of dementia as they age.
Lifestyle choices can also affect your chances of developing dementia, including diet.
Alzheimer’s disease is known as the most common form of dementia. The disease is caused by unusual forms of proteins in the brain. Some proteins, called amyloid, create plaques around brain cells, while other proteins, called tau, cause brain cells to tangle.
As more brain cells are affected, neurotransmitters, the chemicals that transmit messages between brain cells, decrease, harming overall brain function.
One of the first areas affected are a person’s memories, which is why people with Alzheimer’s disease can seem confused or forgotten.
Research has found that the MIND diet, a diet that combines the Mediterranean diet with the DASH Diet, helps delay the onset of brain decline.
The MIND diet aims to lower blood pressure and the risk of heart disease, as well as slow the onset of dementia.
So what food should you consider removing from your diet to reduce your risk of developing dementia?
1- Fried food:
Try replacing fried foods from fast food restaurants with whole, home-cooked foods.
And opt for an oil like olive oil instead, if you’re frying anything at home.
The Mind Diet recommends eating cheese less than once a week.
3- Butter and Margarine:
Try to limit your intake to less than one tablespoon per day of butter and margarine. Olive oil is a better option, according to the “Mind” diet.
Healthy Diet for Alzheimer’s Disease
There is no cure for dementia, or a foolproof way to turn back the clock on the effects of dementia once they appear.
However, some diets have been associated with protection against some of the damage to brain cells that can occur as a result of Alzheimer’s disease.
Diets that increase the number of proteins in the brain that protect brain cells, as well as those that reduce inflammation associated with Alzheimer’s disease (which is different from regular inflammation), are associated with better brain function.
The Alzheimer’s Association suggests that a Mediterranean diet (the foundation of the MIND diet) can help maintain brain function.
Eight essential foods from the Mediterranean diet are:
– olive oil
– All the grains