As we age, does what we eat have an impact on our cognitive functions, such as memory, reason, language, attention span, and learning ability?
It appears so, according to cognitive health experts and the latest scientific studies. Here are four diets from around the world that have proven most beneficial for the brain and overall health:
- The Mediterranean diet. This is the best-known and most scientifically supported diet. It is rich in the following foods: olive oil, vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts and seeds, whole-grain foods, and fish. Sugary foods and those high in saturated fats such as red meat are to be limited. In the Luci app, it’s the diet favoured by our healthy lifestyle advisors.
- The Nordic diet. This diet consists of foods that are locally sourced and traditionally consumed in Scandinavian countries. Like the Mediterranean diet, it emphasizes fruits and vegetables, fish, and whole grains (rye, wheat, oats, barley). It includes different varieties of vegetables, fruits, and grains, and relies on canola oil over olive oil.
- The DASH diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension). This low-sodium (salt) diet was designed in the United States as a way to reduce blood pressure. It’s rich in fruits, vegetables, and nuts, and includes low-fat dairy products, lean meats, fish, whole grains, and healthy fats.
- The MIND diet (Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay). This diet, which is a hybrid of the Mediterranean and DASH diets, emphasizes eating leafy greens, whole grains, and berries. It recommends nuts, legumes, chicken, and fish a few times a week, but specifically limits butter, cheese, and fried or fast foods.