Plant-Based Diet Reduces Risk of Cognitive Impairment in the Elderly: Study

A new study has found that elderly people who consume a plant-based diet have a reduced risk of cognitive decline and dementia. The research was published in the journal Molecular Nutrition and Food Research, and was carried out over 12 years with the participation of 842 people from France who were over the age of 65.

The study analyzed the relationship between the metabolism of dietary components, androgynous metabolism, intestinal microbiota, and cognitive impairment. Researchers were able to determine the role of diet in the risk of suffering cognitive impairment. They examined plasma samples, which indicated that some metabolites were related to cognitive impairment and dementia progression.


Researchers were able to show a significant association between these processes and specific metabolites. There is a protective association between metabolites derived from coco, mushrooms, red wine, and microbial metabolism of polyphenol-rich foods such as apple, green tea, blueberries, and pomegranates, and cognitive impairment in the elderly.

Professor Cristina Andres-Lacueva concluded, “A higher intake of fruits, vegetables, and plant-based foods provides polyphenols and other bioactive compounds that could help reduce the risk of cognitive decline due to aging.”

Lifestyle Changes

With an aging population and the risk of cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease on the rise, it is vital to find ways to reduce the risk. With simple lifestyle changes, dementia and other debilitating mental health issues could be prevented or symptoms reduced.

Diet is an easy thing to change that could help to reduce the risk of cognitive decline. Many experts believe that following a Mediterranean lifestyle may help treat and prevent cognitive decline.

The Mediterranean diet, known for its emphasis on vegetables, whole grains, fish, and olive oil, has previously found to have almost a 45% to 50% reduction in the risk of having an impaired cognitive function. So, consuming a plant-based diet, or one such as the Mediterranean, is a great way to help keep your brain healthy!

Author Bio

Sarah began her interest in nutritional healing at an early age. After going through health problems and becoming frustrated with the conventional ways doctors wanted to treat her illness (which were not working), she took it upon herself to find alternative treatments. This led her to revolutionize her own diet to help her get healthier and tackle her health problems. She began treating her illness by living a more balanced lifestyle through healthy food choices, exercise and other alternative medicine such as meditation. This total positive lifestyle change led her to earn a diploma in Nutritional Therapy from Health Sciences Academy in London, England. Today, Sarah enjoys helping others by teaching healthy lifestyle changes through her personal consultations and with her regular contributions to the Doctors Health Press. Also, passionate about following her dreams in life, Sarah moved to France and lived in Paris for over 5 years where she earned a certification in beadwork and embroidery from Lesage (an atelier owned by Chanel). She then went on to be a familiar face sitting front row and reporting from Paris Fashion Week. Sarah continues to practice some of the cultural ways of life she learned while in Europe. They enjoy their food, and take the time to relax and enjoy many of life’s little moments. These are life lessons she is glad to have brought back home with her.