Scientists Named Products That Save From Dementia
Scientists have found out which combinations of foods have a beneficial effect on the brain, allowing you to keep a sane mind in old age, and which increases the risk of dementia. The results are published in the journal Neurology of the American Academy of Neurology.
It is no secret that many people, getting used to a certain diet, consume the same set of foods for many years.
French scientist Cecilia Samieri (Cécilia Samieri) together with colleagues from the University of Bordeaux decided to find out the relationship of stable combinations of products — the so-called food networks-with the risk of developing dementia in old age.
"There is a complex interconnectedness of foods in the human diet, and it is important to understand how these food networks can affect the brain because dieting can be a promising way to prevent dementia," Dr. Samieri is quoted as saying in a press release from the American Academy of Neurology.
The study, which began five years ago, involved 627 elderly people with an average age of 78. 209 of them had dementia, while 418 did not. At the beginning of the study, participants filled out a questionnaire in which they indicated what foods they had consumed over the past year and how often — from once a month to four times a day. After that, they were monitored and had medical examinations every two or three years.
The results of the study showed that people whose diets consisted mainly of highly processed meat, starchy foods such as potatoes, and snacks, cookies, and cakes developed dementia faster than people who consumed healthier and more varied foods.
"Previous research has shown that following a healthy diet rich in green leafy vegetables, berries, nuts, whole grains, and fish can reduce a person's risk of developing dementia. There were works devoted to the number and frequency of meals, - says Samieri. — Our research has gone even further. We considered food networks in the complex."
Although the total amount of food and the set of products consumed by those who suffered from dementia and those who remained sane were almost the same, the main differences between the groups were precisely in the food combinations.
In the food networks of people with dementia, highly processed meat — sausages, sausage products, and pates-was Central to their diet, which they combined with starchy foods such as potatoes, alcohol, snacks, and sweet pastries. People who did not suffer from dementia ate meat or poultry with a variety of side dishes and supplements, including fruits, vegetables, and seafood. In General, their diet was more varied.
"We found that a greater variety of healthy foods reduces the risk of developing dementia," the scientist notes. — In fact, differences in food webs could be seen long before people with dementia were diagnosed."