green leafy vegetables prevent cognitive decline and keep your brain young

If you want to keep your mind young and sharp, it turns out that, in a world of complicated brain training apps and dangerous drugs, the best advice is the advice your parents gave you all along. And the benefit is massive.

Eat your greens, your parents said. And they were right. Researchers have now found that eating green leafy vegetables keeps your brain healthy and young.

How young? Really young. People who eat the most green leafy vegetables slow cognitive decline down so much that it is the equivalent of being eleven years younger. That’s a lot!

How much do you need to eat to keep your brain that young? The people in the group that ate the most green leafy vegetables were eating about 1.3 servings a day.

How does it do it? It turns out that several nutrients in the leafy greens are boosting your brain. Specifically, of the nutrients the researchers tested, vitamin K (phylloquinone), lutein, folic acid, vitamin E (α-tocopherol), nitrate and a flavonoid called kaempferol were all significantly associated with slower cognitive decline.

The study included 960 healthy people between the ages of 58 and 99 who were followed for an average of 4.7 years. This is not the first study to reveal this important power of vegetables. In the past year, a meta-analysis of the research and a second meta-analysis and systematic review have found a significant reduction in the risk of cognitive impairment and dementia for people who eat the most fruits and vegetables.


Neurology 2017;doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000004815


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For more on healthy eating for your brain and for preventing Alzheimer’s, see Linda's newest book, The All-New Vegetarian Passport: a comprehensive health book and cookbook all in one.


The Natural Path
 is intended for educational purposes only and is in no way intended for self-diagnosis or self-treatment. For health problems, consult a qualified health practitioner for a comprehensive program.

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