Alzheimer's disease is among the top 10 leading causes of death in America, according to the Alzheimer's Association. While some progress has been made in managing the cognitive condition, there is still no known cure.
However, with the appropriate combination of diet and exercise, people may be able to reduce their risk of diagnosis. Recently, nonprofit senior living community MySilverAge recommended three foods that may help prevent Alzheimer's.
One of these foods is oil-based salad dressing. These salad dressings provide antioxidants through vitamin E. Antioxidants protect nerve cells from oxidation, thereby averting damage to the brain. Vitamin E has also been found to delay the progression of memory loss among people with moderate to severe cases of Alzheimer’s.
According to MySilverAge, another brain booster is beet juice. The nitrates in the root vegetable dilate blood vessels. This dilation increases the flow of blood and oxygen throughout the body, notably the frontal lobes of the brain, which helps to prevent dementia. Other foods rich in nitrates include cabbage and leafy greens, such as spinach and celery.
The innards of a chicken are likely thrown away by many, but MySilverAge would advise against this practice. That's because the giblets - namely the neck, gizzard, heart and kidneys - are loaded with vitamin B-12. A study published in the medical journal Neurology found that B vitamins could be linked to positive mental acuity and overall sharpness.
Eating right is best complemented by regular exercise and, based on recent research from Cardiff University, physical activity is the most effective way to avoid dementia. Researchers found that not smoking, maintaining a low body weight, limiting alcohol consumption, eating a well-balanced diet and maintaining an exercise regimen all help to diminish the development of dementia among both men and women. Peter Elwood, the study's lead author, told BBC News that exercising at least 30 minutes a day for five days a week was the best way to receive the brain-boosting benefits.
Speak up: Are these three items currently in your diet?