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The MIND diet reduces the risk by 50%

The MIND diet encourages eating certain foods and avoiding others to prevent or delay cognitive decline. It incorporates elements from other diets to promote healthy eating habits that may help reduce the risk of cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease.

Cognitive impairment refers to difficulties with memory, learning, or thought processing. Although many people consider this a normal part of aging, it is not inevitable. It is therefore important to maintain brain health, which can include eating a nutritious and balanced diet. The MIND diet is a hybrid of the Mediterranean diet and the DASH diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) and has shown promise in preventing cognitive decline. With a few simple dietary changes, people following this diet can take steps to maintain brain health and prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.
Here’s the MIND Diet in detail, including foods to include and avoid, and a sample meal plan for you.

Definition of the MIND diet

The MIND diet uses aspects of the DASH diet and the Mediterranean diet. Previous research has shown that these diets can help preserve cognitive function. That’s why researcher Martha Clare Morris, Professor of Epidemiology, Director of the Division of Nutrition and Nutritional Epidemiology in the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Chicago, combined these diets to create MIND (Mediterraneand-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay). .

The traditional Mediterranean diet consists mainly of grains, legumes, vegetables, fruit, nuts and fish. It may also contain small amounts of meat, eggs, dairy, and alcohol. The DASH diet emphasizes fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products. You can also eat whole grains, poultry, fish, and nuts, but should limit your intake of saturated fats, red meat, and sugar. The MIND diet combines these eating patterns by encouraging the consumption of many plant-based foods in addition to fish and poultry while attempting to avoid saturated fats and added sugars. What sets this diet apart is its focus on daily and weekly recommendations for specific foods and food groups.

For example, it recommends two or more servings of vegetables per day, but states that at least one serving should be green, leafy vegetables. There is evidence that the MIND diet can help reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s by about 53% or 35%, depending on whether the person follows the diet strictly or moderately well. Although more research is needed to confirm these findings, this diet may be a promising strategy to prevent or delay cognitive decline. However, it is advisable to discuss any dietary change with a doctor before implementing it.

Purpose of the MIND Diet

The goal of the MIND diet is to improve brain function and contribute to cognitive resilience in older adults. There is evidence that factors associated with a healthy lifestyle, such as B. a high-quality diet, can have positive effects on the brain. Therefore, following this diet may help slow cognitive decline and reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia. For example, a 2022 study finds that better adherence to the MIND diet is associated with a lower risk of dementia.

Similarly, a 2021 study reports that the MIND diet may improve cognitive functioning scores in high-risk groups. Along with exercise and cognitive training programs, these diets could be a useful tool against dementia. In addition, other evidence shows a possible link between strictly adhering to the MIND diet and slowing down cognitive decline after stroke.


There is evidence that the MIND diet may provide multiple benefits for a range of people. In addition to reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s, it can prevent cardiovascular disease and even some types of cancer.

Many factors can increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s. While people cannot change some risk factors, such as age and genetics, they can control others, including exercise, cognitive training, and diet. The authors of a 2019 review note that certain diets, like the MIND diet, may help protect the brain through their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

Similarly, the Mediterranean and DASH diets show promise for promoting cardiovascular health. Because the MIND diet contains elements of both of these diets, it’s likely to be beneficial for heart health as well.

A 2021 study also identified an association between adherence to the MIND diet and a lower risk of developing breast cancer. However, more research is needed to examine the links between diet and cancer.


Current data do not assign any specific risks to the MIND diet. However, it is recommended that you discuss the diet with a doctor to determine if it is right for you. Some of the foods recommended in the MIND diet may not be suitable for everyone due to allergies, intolerances or food preferences. In these cases, a person may want to discuss other possible diets with a doctor or nutritionist.

Foods to include

The Trusted Source for the MIND Diet lists 15 food components to eat or avoid. The 10 types of foods people can eat on the MIND diet are:

– green leafy vegetables
– all other vegetables
– Berry
– Mother
– Olive oil
– Full grain
– Fishes
– Beans
– Poultry
– Wine

There are also recommendations for how often people on the MIND diet should consume the above foods. For example, in addition to daily vegetables, a person should aim to consume 3 or more servings of minimally processed whole grains per day and 2 or more servings of berries per week.

to avoid foods

The MIND diet also specifies the types of foods that should be avoided. Since it is not always possible to completely avoid these foods, one should strive to limit them as much as possible.

People should strive to include less:

– a tablespoon of butter or margarine a day
– a portion of cheese per week
– 4 servings of red meat per week
– Average one serving of fast food or fried food per week
– 5 servings of pastries and sweets per week

Sample meal plan

There are currently no specific guidelines for following the MIND diet. Rather, the goal is to eat more of the 10 recommended foods and less of the other five that aren’t as nutritious. So a meal plan might include:


Oatmeal is a convenient breakfast option. A bowl of oatmeal meets the MIND diet’s requirements for a whole grain, and people can add toppings like fresh blueberries and nuts to add vitamins and minerals.

Having lunch

For lunch, a suitable option is a pasta salad, which you can prepare in advance. She can start with whole wheat pasta and add other ingredients like spinach, tomatoes, cucumber, and chickpeas. She can then drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and add a pinch of salt and pepper to complete the meal.

In the event of

Nuts can be a handy on-the-go snack. Another solution is to eat a piece of whole wheat bread covered in a thin layer of nut butter.


For a rich and nutritious dinner, you can cook a lean chicken breast with fresh herbs and then brush it with a squeeze of fresh lemon. You can serve it with a side of quinoa and kale.

The MIND diet is a combination of the Mediterranean diet and the DASH diet. It encourages consumption of certain foods, such as whole grains, vegetables, and poultry, while restricting other foods, such as those high in saturated fat and added sugars. This flexible eating pattern focuses on daily and weekly recommendations for specific foods and food groups.

Although more research is needed, there is some evidence that the MIND diet is associated with lower rates of cognitive decline, which may help delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. This diet can complement other healthy lifestyle factors like exercise and cognitive training to help protect brain health.


Cherian, L., et al. (2019). Mediterranean-Dash Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay (MIND) diet slows cognitive decline after stroke.

DASH meal plan. (2021).

de Crom, TOE, et al. (2022). MIND diet and the risk of dementia: A population-based study.

Dhana, K., et al. (2021). MIND diet, common brain pathologies, and cognition in community-living older adults.

Klimova, B., et al. (2020). The Effect of Healthy Diet on Cognitive Performance in Healthy Seniors – A Brief Review.

Marcoson, W. (2015). What are the components of the MIND diet? (2015).

McGrattan, AM, et al. (2019). Nutrition and inflammation in cognitive aging and Alzheimer’s.

Morris, MC, et al. (2015). MIND diet linked to reduced incidence of Alzheimer’s disease.

* Presse Santé strives to convey health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE can the information given replace the advice of a doctor.

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