Mediterranean Diet Seems to Boost Ageing Brain Power

Posted by on May 20, 2013 in Food, Drink & Nutrition, Health with 0 Comments

Stephanie Burns | Eurekalert | 20th May, 2013

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Mediterranean diet seems to boost ageing brain power

Better than low fat option for those at risk of vascular dementia

A Mediterranean diet with added extra virgin olive oil or mixed nuts seems to improve the brain power of older people better than advising them to follow a low-fat diet, indicates research published online in the Journal of Neurology Neurosurgery and Psychiatry.

The authors from the University of Navarra in Spain base their findings on 522 men and women aged between 55 and 80 without cardiovascular disease but at high vascular risk because of underlying disease/conditions.


These included either type 2 diabetes or three of the following: high blood pressure; an unfavourable blood fat profile; overweight; a family history of early cardiovascular disease; and being a smoker.

Participants, who were all taking part in the PREDIMED trial looking at how best to ward off cardiovascular disease, were randomly allocated to a Mediterranean diet with added olive oil or mixed nuts or a control group receiving advice to follow the low-fat diet typically recommended to prevent heart attack and stroke

A Mediterranean diet is characterised by the use of virgin olive oil as the main culinary fat; high consumption of fruits, nuts, vegetables and pulses; moderate to high consumption of fish and seafood; low consumption of dairy products and red meat; and moderate intake of red wine.

Participants had regular check-ups with their family doctor and quarterly checks on their compliance with their prescribed diet.


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