Study: Being Healthy is Good For You

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A recent study that looked at the diets of people at-risk for Alzheimers has revealed that a balanced diet high in vitamins and low in trans-fats is good for you. Specifically for your brain, and could possibly be a check against the debilitating effects of aging on your thinking organ. Who knew that holding off on the Taco Bell could be a good thing?

Snark aside, the new study is an important one, as it used blood work from 104 people who are over the age of 87 and are at risk for Alzheimer’s. The research, carried out by Oregon Health and Science University’s Gene Bowman, differs greatly from previous studies looking at brain health and diet which have relied on self-reporting questionnaires. Once the blood was drawn, the subjects were then given a series of cognitive tests to see how they performed.

The researchers found that subjects with high levels of vitamins B, C, D and E had higher scores, as did subjects with high levels of omega-3 fatty acids. Conversely, people with high levels of trans fats had lower scores.

Researchers also carried out brain scans on 42 of the participants, and discovered that the subjects whose blood was chock-full of vitamins and healthy fatty acids also had more brain mass than their trans fat laden counterparts. While the results still need confirmation, the work suggests that a healthy diet could be a weapon in the fight against the ravages of age on human mental capacity.

So, if that’s not reason enough to put down the McRib and pick up a light salmon salad, I don’t know what is.

(BBC via Slashdot, image of Windows 7 Whopper)

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