Dietary flavonoids from berries, apples, and other plant-based foods help protect against Alzheimer’s disease and related dementia, according to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Researchers reviewed diet record data and compared flavonoid intake and dementia incidence rates for 2,801 participants from the Framingham Heart Study Offspring Cohort. Those who had the highest total flavonoid intake from oranges, pears, strawberries, and other plant-based foods were 40% less likely to develop dementia when compared to those with the lowest intakes of flavonoids. These foods also improved cerebrovascular blood flow, which may protect against cognitive decline later in life. The authors attribute the reduced risk to antioxidant and anti-neuroinflammation effects associated with flavonoid intake.
Shishtar E, Rogers GT, Blumberg JB, Au R, Jacques PF. Long-term dietary flavonoid intake and risk of Alzheimer disease and related dementias in the Framingham Offspring Cohort. Am J Clin Nutr. Published online April 22, 2020.