Kathleen M. Hayden, PhD

Kathleen Hayden, Ph.D., Wake Forest School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and colleagues sought to replicate findings* about the MIND diet in 7,057 women participating in the Women’s Health Initiative Memory Study (WHIMS). Using data from WHIMS, they categorized the participants (mean age 71) into quartiles based on level of adherence to the MIND diet, with the 1st quartile being least adherent and the 4th being the most adherent. There were 615 incident cases of Alzheimer’s during a mean follow-up of 9.7 years.

Compared with women in the first (lowest) quartile of MIND adherence, WHIMS participants in the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th quartiles had 24 percent, 21 percent, and 34 percent reductions in the risk of developing Alzheimer’s. It is noteworthy that the largest share of the risk reduction occurred from the poorest dietary habits to the modestly adherent diet. These results corroborate results from previous research in smaller populations, and suggest that it may not require wholesale diet changes to help preserve the aging brain.

*Findings about MIND diet:  Research published in 2015 found that the MIND diet was associated with a reduced incidence of Alzheimer’s disease in a sample of 923 older individuals (Morris et al. Alzheimer’s Dement. 2015; 11:1007-1014)

Kathleen Hayden, Ph.D., et al. The Mind Diet and Incident Dementia, Findings from the Women’s Health Initiative Memory Study. (Funder(s): National Institutes on Aging). Presented July 2017 at AAIC 2017  London, England

Source: AAIC Press Releases on alz.org

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