Dementia: These Popular Foods Can Increase Your Risk

dementia

Although many factors can increase the risk of dementia including diet, age, genetics and lifestyle, we can all control our diets and lifestyles to reduce the risk of developing this disease.

Dr Jennifer Robinson has confirmed that people who consume lots of fried and processed foods perform worse in tests that measure thinking skills. One possible reason for this is that fried foods are pro-inflammatory. This means they cause inflammation in the body and damage blood vessels that supply blood to the brain.

Processed foods that include those made from refined flour such as bread, pasta, pizza and cookies and fried foods such as French fries have been declared as the “worst foods for the brain”.

The Alzheimer’s Society said:

“Several aspects of a person’s health and lifestyle are thought to influence their chances of developing mild cognitive impairment (MCI) as they age”.

Dementia covers a range of degenerative brain disorders that are progressive and affect the brain, including Alzheimer’s disease. These types of dementia prevent the brain cells from working in specific areas. They also affect a person’s ability to remember, think and speak.

In order to stay healthy and reduce our risk, Dementia UK recommends that we regularly consume these brain-healthy foods:

  • Whole grains
  • Beans, lentils and soya
  • Berries and fruit
  • Leafy greens and other colourful vegetables
  • Fish and poultry
  • Nuts and olive oil

Other ways you can reduce your dementia risk are:

  • Undergoing regular health care checks with your GP.
  • Managing your weight to keep it in the healthy weight range.
  • Reducing your alcohol intake.
  • Stop smoking.
  • Take regular exercise. Activities such as walking and swimming are recommended.
  • Staying socially active.
  • Participating in hobbies that stimulate the brain and maintain concentration skills.

Although ageing is undoubtedly the biggest risk factor for dementia, research suggests up to one in three cases of dementia are preventable. By avoiding fried and processed foods and modifying your diet to include healthy brain foods, you can reduce your risk of dementia and other diseases.

These include cardiovascular disease, cancer, osteoporosis and diabetes. You’ll also reduce your risk of suffering from obesity, especially if you combine dietary changes with exercise.

 

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