According to a recent Columbia University Medical Center study, consuming a healthy diet may help lower a person’s risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease later in life.
In the study, lead author Yian Gu and his colleagues monitored the dietary habits of more than 2,000 adults over the age of 65 who were free of symptoms related to cognitive decline. After an average of four years of follow-up, the research team found that 253 individuals had developed Alzheimer’s disease.
Gu found that high intakes of nuts, fish, tomatoes, fruits, poultry as well as cruciferous and green leafy vegetables were associated with a significantly decreased risk of being diagnosed with the brain disorder. In contrast, consumption of high-fat dairy, red meat, organ meat and butter was linked to a considerably increased risk.
"Epidemiological evidence linking diet—one of the most important modifiable environmental factors—and risk of Alzheimer’s disease is rapidly increasing," said the authors.
"Our findings provide support for further exploration of food combination-based dietary behavior for the prevention of this important public health problem," they added.