Most people care so much about taking good care of what they look, which is absolutely fine. They try different diets to stay fit so that they could look and feel good because looking good from the outside seems so matter so much right? However, what most people fail to notice is that they are actually forgetting to look after the most important part of the body, which is the brain. You are so busy working out every single day and doing different types of diets to look good physically that you don’t notice how you are actually neglecting your brain.
According to Alzheimer’s Association, Alzheimer’s disease is actually the sixth leading cause of death in the United States and as of 2017, there are about 5 million people in the United States alone, who are living with Alzheimer’s and by 2050, this could number could actually rise to 16 million. Experts say even said that dementia kills more people than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined. In the year 2000, the number of deaths that are caused by heart disease actually decreased by 14%, but the number of deaths caused by Alzheimer’s actually increased by a massive amount of 89%.
CAN A DIET PREVENT ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE?
According to a research that was presented by the Alzheimer’s Association during their international conference in London, England, the answer is actually a yes. This research found that older adults who followed the Mediterranean diet lowered their risk of dementia by a third. The leader of the study, Claire McEvoy from the University of California-San Francisco’s School of Medicine, “Eating a healthy plant-based diet lower risk of cognitive impairment during aging.”
McEvoy’s team actually tracked 6,000 older Americans’ daily eating habits and they discovered that those who are following the Mediterranean diet were far less likely to suffer from Alzheimer’s. They also found that as long as those people stayed on their diet, they wouldn’t need to worry about being at risk, but it is still best to get checked regularly. In an interview, Dr. Keith Fargo, who is the associate director of scientific programs and outreach of the Alzheimer’s Association said that “As with anyone, eating a well-balanced, nutritious diet is important for overall health. Proper nutrition is important to keep the body strong and healthy. For a person with Alzheimer’s or dementia, poor nutrition may increase behavioral symptoms and cause weight loss.”
WHAT IS THE MEDITERRANEAN DIET?
Experts refer to this diet as the ‘dementia diet’, because this diet is traditionally high in fruits and vegetables as well as with moderate consumption of fish and dairy, and low in meat, sugar and saturated fat. Researchers discovered that the Mediterranean diet actually lowers the risks of stroke, type 2 diabetes, and different cardiovascular diseases. This type of diet has been proven to help the brain when it comes to storing memories and thinking, which would mean that it really does increase the risk of dementia or Alzheimer’s.
NUTRITIONAL STRATEGIES TO COMBAT DEMENTIA
• Cut down refined sugars
Refined sugars contain calories but it doesn’t really have a lot of vitamins, minerals, fibers. This is also commonly found in processed foods, which is why they are not considered as healthy choices of food. If you wish to indulge your sweet tooth, then choose some fruit of Justice-sweetened baked good.
• Make sure you stay hydrated
Believe it or not, this actually affects the brain as well. Which is why experts always say that making sure you stay hydrated is very essential. If you are tired of consuming water then you could always try some liquids with high water content such as fruits, soups, smoothies, and milkshakes. It is not really ideal to keep yourself hydrated with caffeinated drinks.
• Limit saturated fat
The Mediterranean diet is known as the dementia diet for a reason, that is because it is low in saturated fat. It is a fact that some fat is actually essential for the health, but not all fats are good. The best ones that are good for the health are fats in fish olive, and oil on lean cuts of meats.
Most people forget that they have to take care of their brain as well. Choosing to live a healthy lifestyle is indeed a great way to start but doing some mental exercise and learning new things may help too.