This Diet Could Cut Your Risk of Dementia, Heart Disease, and Cancer

A couple of weeks ago the Mediterranean Diet was chosen by US News and World Report to be the best diet or eating lifestyle for optimum health.

But today, health.com, covers another diet in the same US News and World Report article called MIND diet which made the list of 2019’s best diets.The MIND diet is specifically designed to focus on brain health–particularly that of preventing dementia or cognitivedecline related to aging. But other benefits include lowering the risk of cardiovascular diseases, cancer, other aliments as well as weight loss.

So what is the MIND diet?  

MIND stands for the Mediterranean-DashIntervention for Neurodegenerative Delay.  That is a mouthful!  But it’s mainly a combination of the Mediterranean and Dash diets. It’s pretty simple and anyone can do it.

There’s no set meal plan just eating a lot more of brain-defending foods such as:

  • Green leafy vegetables: six or more servings per week
  • All other vegetables: at least one serving a day, particularly non-starchy veggies
  • Nuts: five servings or more weekly
  • Berries: at least two servings a week
  • Beans: a minimum of four servings per week.
  • Whole grains: at least three servings per day
  • Fish: at least once a week, particularly fatty fish high in omega-3s, like salmon, sardines, mackerel, trout, and tuna
  • Poultry: chicken or turkey twice a week or more (but not fried)
  • Olive oil: to be used as your main prep and cooking oil

Foods that should be limited are butter, cheese, wine, red meat and of course pastries and sweets.

Some of the benefits as previously mentioned are prevention of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, reduction in blood pressure, improved digestive health, reduction of inflammation. 

Though there aren’t many studies on the MIND diet because it’s rather new, one recent study’s outcome was impactful. One thousand senior adults participated and results were 53 percent had a lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s if they followed the MIND diet closely and also better memory and less cognitive decline.

One of the drawbacks, which is not a bad one, is knowing what a portion size is. health.comrecommends going to the portion-size guide from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

You can find more information in books and online resources but there’s no official website that would give you meal plans or recipes. 

Weight loss was mentioned at the beginning of the article because the MIND diet focuses on a lot of whole, high-fiber foods. But as always, overeating isn’t helpful either especially if you overdo it with foods like quinoa, brown rice, and nuts, etc.

health.comsays: “The MIND diet is a solid, healthful, sustainable approach to eating. If you need assistance transforming the basic outline into precisely what and how much to eat, consider consulting with a registered dietitian nutritionist, who can tailor the plan to your needs and goals.”