Photo: ozium101 (flickr)
Food For Thought
In a new study published by The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the Mediterranean diet may be associated with slower rates of mental decline in the elderly.
The study that began in 2003, analyzed 3,790 Chicago residents, 65 and older. Researchers tested subjects on mental acuity at three year intervals, while tracking their degree of dedication to the Mediterranean diet.
The more the subjects stuck to the diet, the slower their rates of cognitive decline.
Christine C. Tangney, the lead author of the study and Associate Professor of Nutrition at Rush Medical College in Chicago, says sticking to the diet made a large difference. Those in the top third for adherence were cognitively the equivalent of two years younger than those in the bottom third.
How To Eat For Your Brain
What is the Mediterranean diet?
- High consumption of fruits, vegetable, bread and other cereals, potatoes, beans, nuts and seeds
- Olive oil is an important source of monosaturated fat
- Dairy products, fish and poultry are consumed in low to moderate amounts, and little red meat is eaten
- Eggs are consumed zero to four times a week
- Wine is consumed in low to moderate amounts
In addition to being good for your brain, the Mediterranean diet has also been shown to protect against heart disease, diabetes, cancer and obesity.