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Meditterranean diet reduces aging effects on brain
Old 05-12-2015, 04:44 PM   #1
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Meditterranean diet reduces aging effects on brain

Today's Wall St Journal reported on this:
Quote:
The Mediterranean diet, supplemented with a handful of nuts or a few tablespoons of olive oil a day, can counteract the effects of aging on the brainís ability to function, a new clinical study suggests.
I'm not sure how to get a link that is generally useful for the WSJ article without a subscription. But this is a link to the study it reported on:
JAMA Network | JAMA Internal Medicine | Mediterranean Diet and Age-Related Cognitive Decline: *A Randomized Clinical Trial
Quote:
Objective To investigate whether a Mediterranean diet supplemented with antioxidant-rich foods influences cognitive function compared with a control diet.
...
Conclusions and Relevance In an older population, a Mediterranean diet supplemented with olive oil or nuts is associated with improved cognitive function.
FWIW, we tend towards a Mediterranean diet. In the last year, I've added nuts to my raisin bran cereal + seasonal fruits for breakfast. Really seems to stay with me in the AM. I knew there was some reason why I was loosing it slower.
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Old 05-12-2015, 05:36 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Lsbcal View Post
I'm not sure how to get a link that is generally useful for the WSJ article without a subscription.
If you highlight the article's title and then right click, one of your options is "search Google for [highlighted text]". It takes you to the full article without subscription.

Usually.
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Old 05-12-2015, 09:05 PM   #3
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The title includes the word "suggests". What does that mean and should you follow it?
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Old 05-13-2015, 05:55 AM   #4
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The biggest problem with this kind of advice is that AFAIK there is no generally accepted definition of the "Mediterranean diet."

Back in the lat 1980s and early 1990s, considerable research went into trying to nail it down, but everyone finally gave up because there was (and is) simply far too much diet variation from country to country around the Med.

Unfortunately, the phrase "Mediterranean Diet" is still tossed around with abandon by authors and researchers, but it is never really defined -- they just give some examples of how some people eat (or used to eat) and extrapolate according to their own biases.
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Old 05-13-2015, 08:05 AM   #5
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This was a randomized control trial so if one goes to the full article they probably have the components of the diet pretty clearly laid out. The issues I have in reading the abstract is that follow-up was only 334 of 447 participants which is unacceptable low in an RCT in my mind. What happened to the other 25% of the participants? This is hopefully explained in the full paper. I don't know whether the outcomes would be considered clinically significant or are only apparent on testing. They also used multiple tests on a relatively small study group.

Probably a good idea to eat 'well' and stay active and engaged.
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Old 05-13-2015, 08:21 AM   #6
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I don't know whether the outcomes would be considered clinically significant or are only apparent on testing.
From the WSJ article:
Quote:
The changes observed in cognition were very small and didnít actually show that those diets improved cognition, they just showed less decline.
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Old 05-13-2015, 08:35 AM   #7
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Sorry I just read the Abstract at JAMA. So not only is follow-up suspect but the outcomes are questionable. Back to my Sudoku! Wait where did I leave it?
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Old 05-13-2015, 08:54 AM   #8
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dip a sardine in some olive oil and wash it down with a glass of vino tinto, you're good to go!
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Old 05-13-2015, 09:01 AM   #9
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Sorry I just read the Abstract at JAMA. So not only is follow-up suspect but the outcomes are questionable. Back to my Sudoku! Wait where did I leave it?
Hah. I read it too and reacted the same way. But, DW who worries about dementia, has been struggling with weight loss and follows a "Mediterraneanish" diet but includes lots of low fat stuff (milk, yogurt, etc). I have encouraged her to go for more real fat but keep the carbs lower so I cited this as evidence in support of a bit more fat. I noticed she came home with a full fat Greek yogurt that has about the same carbs as her former low fat Greek yogurt.
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Old 05-13-2015, 09:08 AM   #10
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Regardless of what the "Mediterranean Diet" is, it probably does not include many Big Macs or Stouffer's lasagna...
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Old 05-13-2015, 10:27 AM   #11
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Hah. I read it too and reacted the same way. But, DW who worries about dementia, has been struggling with weight loss and follows a "Mediterraneanish" diet but includes lots of low fat stuff (milk, yogurt, etc). I have encouraged her to go for more real fat but keep the carbs lower so I cited this as evidence in support of a bit more fat. I noticed she came home with a full fat Greek yogurt that has about the same carbs as her former low fat Greek yogurt.
Yes it's true. I was looking at the various yogurts at Costco at DW's request and noted that there wasn't much difference in terms of calories between the no-fat/0.1% and the 2% variety. I didn't see any of the whole milk versions. It is lost on many people that excess carbs are just converted to fat by the body.
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Old 05-13-2015, 11:20 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by donheff View Post
Hah. I read it too and reacted the same way. But, DW who worries about dementia, has been struggling with weight loss and follows a "Mediterraneanish" diet but includes lots of low fat stuff (milk, yogurt, etc). I have encouraged her to go for more real fat but keep the carbs lower so I cited this as evidence in support of a bit more fat. I noticed she came home with a full fat Greek yogurt that has about the same carbs as her former low fat Greek yogurt.
I found early on in my weight loss 'program', I had to add a little more fat because I was hungry most of the time. I try to get the majority of fat from olive oil and nuts.

'Course my grandpa ate lard all of his life (he was never over weight). It killed him at the age of 94.

Then again, he was very active. Walked everywhere he went. Along with exercise, I believe genetics had something to do with it.
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Old 05-13-2015, 12:27 PM   #13
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I found early on in my weight loss 'program', I had to add a little more fat because I was hungry most of the time. I try to get the majority of fat from olive oil and nuts.

'Course my grandpa ate lard all of his life (he was never over weight). It killed him at the age of 94.

Then again, he was very active. Walked everywhere he went. Along with exercise, I believe genetics had something to do with it.
If saturated fat is the villain, lard is not much of a villain because it is less than 1/2 composed of saturated fatty acids. Olive oil contains about 70% oleic acid, the main monounsaturated FFA found in our diets. Lard is not that far behind at 44% oleic acid. Overall, lard has less than 50% saturated fat, and a 14% of lard is stearic acid, a saturated fatty acid which I believe even died in the wool lipophobes haven't been able to pin anything on.

My grandparents also lived on a farm in a border state, where everyone other than the barber and doctor did mixed farming, and often they did too. Cows, pigs, ducks, geese, fruit trees, strawberries, large vegetable garden, fish from the river down the hill.

The old man, known as "boss" was born during the civil war and lived until he was 84. The morning he died he milked, slopped the pigs, and repaired a gap in the milking shed.

Long life, went to a doctor once. He had an infected hand, and my dad (his SIL) loaded him into our car and took him to see a doctor where the hand was lanced and bound up.

I'd like to say he ate nothing but meat, but this would not be true. But he ate all the meat he could get his hands on, and all the fat too and pretty much anything else. And often his first bite before he went out to the farmyard was cornbread slathered in lard

Like bbbamI 's Granddad, he was on his feet from before sunup to after dark, except during the longest days of summer. He was getting well up in years by the time I was born, but I never saw him in a rocking chair and rarely in any other kind of chair other than at meals.

Ha
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Old 05-13-2015, 01:54 PM   #14
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Our grandparents were tough, weren't they? I suppose they had to be...

Along with most, I worry about dementia/Alzheimer's. My mother (and her brother) both died from complications due to Alzheimer's. It's difficult to talk about.

At this point all I can do is maintain my weight loss, exercise and see my doctor for checkups. I do enjoy reading any study that might aid me in a long, healthy life.

In the meantime I'll try to enjoy life along the way.
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