Smart Eats

Friday, November 5th, 2010 by American Senior Fitness Association   View This Issue of Experience!

At the Experimental Biology 2010 Meeting held recently in Anaheim, California, the American Society for Nutrition (ASN) presented a scientific program including this important news:

A study of nearly 4,000 persons, ages 65-plus, found that those who most closely followed a Mediterranean diet reduced their risk for cognitive decline with aging. The subjects’ cognitive skills were tested every three years for 15 years. Those with the highest adherence to the diet were the least likely to experience mental decline.

The study’s lead author Dr. Christy Tangney, of Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, said in an ASN news release: "This diet emphasizes vegetables, fruits, fish, olive oil, lower meat consumption, and moderate wine and non-refined grain intake. Instead of espousing avoidance of foods, the data support that adults over age 65 should look to include more olive oil, legumes, nuts, and seeds in their diet in order to improve their recall times and other cognitive skills, such as identifying symbols and numbers."

In addition, Dr. Tangney said, "…we want older adults to remember that physical activity is an important part of maintaining cognitive skills."

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