flavonols from fruit vegetables and chocolate prevent Alzheimer's

Could it be possible to lower your risk of Alzheimer’s by eating more of the right foods? Sound too good to be true? Maybe not!

Over the course of a study of 921 people that tracked what they ate and gave annual neurological evaluations, 220 of them developed Alzheimer’s disease.

But the ones who ate foods that provided the most flavonols, a type of antioxidant found abundantly in fruits, vegetables, dark chocolate and green tea, had 48% lower incidence of Alzheimer’s disease.

Though one of the first study to look specifically at the flavonols in fruits and vegetables, this study does make sense in the context of a body of research that has already shown that fruits and vegetables in general are valuable for warding of Alzheimer’s.

One earlier study of flavonoid rich foods found that elderly people who consumed the most chocolate, tea and wine had significantly better cognitive abilities (J Nutr 2009;139:120-7). And, as we discuss in our book Chocolate: Superfood of the Gods, several studies show that flavonol rich dark chocolate improves cognition. One important study found that seniors who were given dark chocolate improved their memories from that of a sixty year old to that of thirty or forty year old (Nature Neuroscience 2014;17:1798-1803).

Several studies published a decade ago had already shown that eating more fruits and vegetables improves brain function in the elderly (Arch Neurol 2009;66:216-25; Curr Opin Clin Metab Care 2010; 13:14-18). And your risk of developing Alzheimer’s has been shown to drop by an incredible 76% when you drink at least three glasses of fruit or vegetable juice a week (Am J Med 2006; 119:751-59). The fruit and vegetable heavy Mediterranean diet has also been shown to lower the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by at least 33% (Am J Clin Nutr 2003;78:517S; J Alzheimer’s Dis 2013;10.3233/JAD-130831).

So, perhaps a healthy cognitive future is more in your power than you think. Start by eating a healthy diet loaded in flavonol rich fruits, vegetables and dark chocolate!

Neurology 2020;doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000008981

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For more information and tons of delicious recipes to prevent Alzheimer’s and keep your brain young, see Linda's The All-New Vegetarian Passport: a comprehensive health book and cookbook all in one.

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 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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