Are you doing brainteasers to try to keep your memory sharp? You might do well to munch on some salmon, walnuts or avocados while working on your Sudoku puzzle.
The Mediterranean diet may help you prevent dementia, the decline in memory and other mental processes that affects many people as they age, says Michael Cohen, M.D., a neurologist at Mills-Peninsula Medical Center.
Dementia, which is caused by damage to brain cells, is not a disease in itself. Rather, it’s a symptom of a number of neurological disorders. Alzheimer’s disease, a progressive brain disease that severely alters thinking and affects a person’s ability to carry out daily tasks, is one of the most common forms of dementia.
“The Mediterranean diet is not a 100 percent fail-safe prevention tactic, but it seems to help,” Dr. Cohen says. “Even in people with early dementia, it seems to slow the progression of memory loss.” The diet also lowers the risk of cardiovascular disease.