Diets – love them or hate them? Most of us hate them. But, did you know that there’s a diet that’s not only good for your brain but easy to follow? Yes, that’s right. In fact, there are 2 according to US News and World Report’s yearly ranking. The classic Mediterranean and the MIND diets are ranked #2 and #3 for Best Diets and also Easiest to Follow Diets. Both of these diets are acclaimed for their positive effects on brain health. Not only do they lower brain shrinkage but also combat cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s.
The MIND vs. the Mediterranean Diet
Based on studies that revealed which foods were good for the brain, scientists tweaked the Mediterranean diet to create the MIND diet. There are 10 key food groups including leafy greens, berries, nuts, fish, poultry, olive oil and red wine. Red meat, butter/margarine, cheese, sweets and fried or fast food are the core 5 that should not be consumed. The difference between the Mediterranean diet is that the MIND one does not require you to eat more than 1 serving of fish, does not include any other fruit and adds leafy greens to the mix.
Eat Your Way To Brain Health
The brain shrinks as we age. However, several findings indicate that people who followed a Mediterranean diet had less brain shrinkage as they got older. Studies also indicate that it, along with the MIND one significantly slows down cognitive decline.
A study followed participants for approximately 4.5 to 10 years. Those who adhered to the MIND diet more closely had better cognition scores including in areas like working memory, visuospatial and perceptual speed. Variables like education and exercise were accounted for and still the difference between those who scored highest versus lowest was equivalent to a gap of 7.5 years.
Scientists have also discovered that what we eat can have a big affect on the development of Alzheimer’s disease. Those who followed the MIND food plan most closely lowered their risk of Alzheimer’s by 53%, however, even those who moderately followed the diet, lowered their chances by 35%. Several studies reveal that the Mediterranean diet also reduces the risk. That’s pretty good odds especially with diets that are easy to stick to!
So why not have some salmon and kale salad today and be on your way to a healthier, happier brain? And, don’t forget to engage and reward your mind with our fun, smart brain games. We’ve the most games and most variety of any other brain training program so that you’ll always be challenged.
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