Eating a group of specific foods known as the MIND diet may slow cognitive decline among older adults, according to researchers at Rush University Medical Center.
The MIND diet was designed by combining research looking at the best aspects of diet research in dementia. Researchers looked at participants’ normal diet and scored them by how closely they matched the MIND diet. They found that those who matched the ideal diet the best had less cognitive decline than those who matched it the worst.
The study published online in Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association, showed that older people who rigorously followed the MIND diet showed an equivalent of being 7.5 years younger cognitively than those who did not follow the diet as closely.
Dr Clare Walton, Alzheimer’s Society’s Research Manager said: “This research reinforces what we already know about the importance of maintaining a healthy and balanced diet to keep your brain healthy. Previous research suggests that the MIND diet can reduce the risk of developing dementia and now we see it could also slow down the cognitive decline normally seen with age.
“It’s important that people realise there are several steps you can take to reduce your risk of dementia, in addition to a healthy balanced diet, including being physically and mentally active and not smoking.”