Diet may improve cognitive function in older adults

Czech researchers recently published a study in the journal Nutrients, showing a connection between diet and cognitive decline.

The researchers reviewed 12 randomized controlled trials (published between 2014 and 2018) looking at the effect of nutrition on cognitive decline in older people. Most of the studies were European, and the rest were American and Australian. The studies all analyzed the effect of one or more of the following nutritional interventions on cognitive decline:

  • Dietary supplements (cocoa flavanols, DHA-rich fish oil, omega-3 fatty acid)
  • Vegetables
  • Berry and orange beverages
  • Mediterranean diet

The researchers discovered seome interesting things in their analysis

  1. Participants who had nutritional interventions experienced positive impact on their cognitive performance, specifically memory and attention.
  2. Combining diet with other interventions (exercise, social activities, cognitive training, and vascular risk management), significantly impacted cognitive functioning later in life.
  3. Cognitive performance can be influence by intervention in as little as 5 weeks.
  4. Foods impact cognitive decline more powerfully than individual nutrients.

This study joins a growing body of research showing a strong connection between nutrition and mental health. Here at Truehope, we’ve been promoting nutrition as mental health treatment for over 25 years.