According to a Japanese study, the consumption of a specific food – common in our fridge – could slow down cognitive decline. An update on this discovery, with Dr Arnaud Cocaul, nutritionist.
Doing sports, sleeping well, learning a foreign language, seeing people… There are many tips for preventing Alzheimer’s. But diet also plays a very special role in this active prevention of disease; and a specific food plays a vital role.
Cheese consumers may have a lower risk of dementia
If several studies had already proven that dairy products played a role in the proper functioning of the brain, scientists from Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute have, in this work, attempted to demonstrate how cheese consumption was linked to better cognitive health.
For this study, they analyzed the health data of 1,516 participants aged 65 and over. The eating habits of these women and men – as well as their cognitive abilities – were closely scrutinized.
The Folstein test (“mini-mental state examination”) was used in particular to assess the cognitive functions of the candidates.
Scientists then discovered “an inverse association between cheese consumption and reduced cognitive functions”.
Cheese lovers also had a better test score.
“Participants who included cheese in their diet were less likely to score 23 or less (which translates to reduced cognitive function, editor’s note)”, specifies PsyPost.
Cheese lovers have a more varied diet
Although this discovery may seem surprising, the results of the study are quite easily explained: regular cheese consumers had a more diversified diet than others.
“The cheese consumption group had significantly higher food variety scores than the no cheese group”, write the authors in the article.
So, “subjects consuming cheese had a dietary habit of consuming a wide variety of foods”, they add. However, “the possibility that cheese contains specific nutrients that support cognitive function cannot be denied”, they conclude.
NO to diets, YES to WW!
Vitamin D, responsible for better cognitive health?
For his part, Dr. Cocaul believes that “vitamins contained in cheese” could be responsible for better cognitive health, and more specifically vitamin D.
“If the proteins and fatty acids in cheese are beneficial for the brain, I think that vitamin D plays a very special role. It is more than a vitamin, almost a hormone which acts on cognitive functions, but also on the heart and immunity“.
Fact, “dairy products, if regularly singled out, should not be removed from a balanced diet“.
Besides, “eliminating any food is not a good thing… Unless you find the perfect equivalent from a nutritional point of view“, concludes the nutritionist.