Friday, February 20, 2009

Mediterranean diet tackles dementia

Following a Mediterranean diet rich in fruits, vegetables, fish and olive oil can help improve memory and tackle Alzheimer's disease.

According to a study published in the Archives of Neurology, following a healthy diet lowers the risk of developing mild cognitive impairment, characterized by forgetfulness and difficulty in concentrating, as well as the risk of subsequent Alzheimer's disease.

Adopting a strict diet lowered the mild cognitive impairment risk by 28 percent, whereas moderate adherence to such diet was associated with a 17 percent lower risk of developing mild cognitive impairment.

Individuals with mild cognitive impairment who eat a Mediterranean-style diet are 45 percent less likely to make the transition into Alzheimer's disease.

Scientists concluded that following this diet helps keep the brain healthy through reducing inflammation and improving cardiovascular risk factors such as elevated cholesterol and blood sugar levels.