Can Diet Prevent Alzheimer’s and Cognitive Decline? Study Hopes to Find Out

Can Diet Prevent Alzheimer’s and Cognitive Decline? Study Hopes to Find Out
Researchers at Rush and Harvard universities are preparing a pioneering clinical trial to evaluate the impact of diet in preventing cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease (AD) in older people. The randomized Phase 3 trial (NCT02817074), titled “MIND Diet Intervention and Cognitive Decline,” will test whether a healthy diet that the researchers devised — based on a mix of the Mediterranean and DASH diet plans — can protect people from neurodegenerative ills. With support from a $14.5 million research grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the study will follow  an estimated 600 people, ages 65 to 84, for three years. Planned participants will be overweight and tending to favor suboptimal diets, two factors making them vulnerable to Alzheimer's. The study will take place at two different sites: Rush University Medical Center, in Chicago, and Harvard School of Public Health, in Boston. It expects to begin recruiting soon. "We hope to determine whether a specific diet affects or prevents the development of Alzheimer's disease," Martha Clare Morris, ScD, a nutritional epidemiologist at Rush University and the study's principal investigator of the study, said in a press release. The MIND diet includes nine “brain-healthy food groups,” like chicken, fish, green leafy vegetables, berries and nuts; and five “unhealthy food groups,” namely red meat, butter and stick margarine, cheese, pastries, sweets, and fried
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5 comments

  1. Having taken care of over 5000 patients with Alzheimer’s Disease has taught me a great deal of important lessons. Diet plays a major role in reducing the risk if not slowing progression of Alzheimer’s Disease.

    The MIND Diet is rich in nutrients that act as inhibitors of the dreaded term “neuroinflammation” which is one of the major findings in the brains of AD patients: that is, there is an inflammation or battle being waged against poisons, one of which I called Ac-Tau, short for acetylated Tau. TAU is an abbreviation for an essential protein called Tubulin Associated Unit. When it becomes acetylated (a simple but poisonous chemical process to all neurons) the Tau becomes like a virus and infects other previously healthy brain cells leading to brain failure. The positive aspects of diets like the MIND diet is that they appear to be rich in an essential chemical that the body does not make, but all plant life makes: salicylic acid. Diets rich in salicylic acid containing foods (as seen in the MIND diet) are likely the reason such individuals can lower their risk of AD. I myself enjoy a diet rich in plants, vegetables, nuts, spices et al that are replete in such neuroinflammatory inhibitors.

    • Tim Bossie says:

      Thank you for the comment and your great diet tips. It can never be overlooked at how important diet is for overall health.

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