Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, and dementia are just a few of the degenerative brain diseases becoming more and more common these days. As the population ages, they begin to see a decline in overall brain function. Pretty scary thought, right?
But what if there was a way to stop your brain from growing old? What if it was as simple as eating right in your early adult years? According to a study published in the journal Neurology
, eating healthy at a young age is the key to a healthy brain later on in life!
How Your Eating Habits Now Affect Your Brain Tomorrow
A team of researchers from McMaster University studied over 28,000 people, from 40 different countries around the world, all over the age of 55. They studied the dietary habits of these people, evaluating how much fruit, veggies, nuts, soy, and fish each ate. They also looked for bad dietary habits, including overdrinking, eating a lot of deep-fried foods, red meats, and sugary snacks.
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After 5 years, 4,700 people had begun to show signs of brain function decline. Of the healthiest participants in the study, only 14% had shown decline, compared to 18% in the "least healthy diet" group.
This may sound like nothing, but imagine 4% of the world's population--that's a startling 280 million people! Even just the American population, we're talking 5 million people who could reduce their brain decline by eating healthier at a young age.
Interestingly enough, the diet that proved to be the most effective for having a healthy brain was the Mediterranean Diet. The researchers didn't identify a single food as the defining factor in health, as it's well-known that the diet is effective because of the combination of foods.
So how can you keep your brain healthy into your golden years? Start eating healthier now, which means:
- Soy products
- Moderate alcohol
Cut back on red meats, fried foods, and sweets, and limit your alcohol intake. Do that, and you'll live a longer, healthier life!
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