A Mediterranean diet is not only good for the body but can also help reduce the risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer's. A recent study analyzing data from over 60,000 seniors found that people who followed a Mediterranean diet had a 23% reduced likelihood of developing dementia, even among those with a higher genetic risk. The diet consists of vegetables, nuts, legumes, whole grains, fruits, olive oil, and seafood, and is low in red or processed meat, sweets, and pastries.
While previous studies have been mixed on the effectiveness of the Mediterranean diet in reducing the risk of dementia, this new study provides strong evidence of its effectiveness. Experts suggest that a healthy lifestyle that includes diet, physical and mental activity, getting enough sleep, controlling blood pressure, and maintaining healthy cholesterol and blood glucose levels can reduce the risk of developing dementia.
The study also revealed that the Mediterranean diet had multiple positive effects, such as reducing antioxidants, tamping down inflammation, and improving the status of the microbiome. With no good medication to treat dementia, experts have been focusing on lifestyle factors that may have some bearing on risk. Therefore, following a Mediterranean diet is an easy and practical way to help protect against the development of dementia.