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Components of a Mediterranean diet and their impact on cognitive functions in aging.

Huhn S, Kharabian Masouleh S, Stumvoll M, Villringer A, Witte AV - Front Aging Neurosci (2015)

Bottom Line: Recent studies also suggest an impact on cognition and brain structure, and increasing effort is made to track effects down to single nutrients.We summarized health benefits associated with the MeDi and evaluated available studies on the effect of (1) fish-consumption and LC-n3-FA supplementation as well as (2) diet-derived or supplementary polyphenols such as RSV, on cognitive performance and brain structure in animal models and human studies.A majority of available studies suggest that consumption of LC-n3-FA with fish or fishoil-supplements exerts positive effects on brain health and cognition in older humans.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Neurology, Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences Leipzig, Germany.

ABSTRACT

Background: Adhering to the Mediterranean diet (MeDi) is known to be beneficial with regard to many age-associated diseases including cardiovascular diseases and type 2 diabetes. Recent studies also suggest an impact on cognition and brain structure, and increasing effort is made to track effects down to single nutrients.

Aims: We aimed to review whether two MeDi components, i.e., long-chain omega-3 fatty acids (LC-n3-FA) derived from sea-fish, and plant polyphenols including resveratrol (RSV), exert positive effects on brain health in aging.

Content: We summarized health benefits associated with the MeDi and evaluated available studies on the effect of (1) fish-consumption and LC-n3-FA supplementation as well as (2) diet-derived or supplementary polyphenols such as RSV, on cognitive performance and brain structure in animal models and human studies. Also, we discussed possible underlying mechanisms.

Conclusion: A majority of available studies suggest that consumption of LC-n3-FA with fish or fishoil-supplements exerts positive effects on brain health and cognition in older humans. However, more large-scale randomized controlled trials are needed to draw definite recommendations. Considering polyphenols and RSV, only few controlled studies are available to date, yet the evidence based on animal research and first interventional human trials is promising and warrants further investigation. In addition, the concept of food synergy within the MeDi encourages future trials that evaluate the impact of comprehensive lifestyle patterns to help maintaining cognitive functions into old age.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Postulated effects of Polyphenols including Resveratrol with regard to brain health and their main dietary sources.
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Figure 2: Postulated effects of Polyphenols including Resveratrol with regard to brain health and their main dietary sources.

Mentions: A further class of substances that is supposed to contribute to the beneficial effects of the Mediterranean Diet (MeDi) is that of polyphenols (Figure 2). Polyphenols are secondary metabolites of plants and characterized by the chemical structure of hydroxyl groups on aromatic rings (Manach et al., 2004). They are quite abundant in our diet and several thousand molecules have been identified to have polyphenol character (Manach et al., 2004). One polyphenol agent that came into research focus is resveratrol (RSV). It occurs naturally in the skin of red grapes, red wine, blueberries, peanuts and Japanese knotweed (Baur and Sinclair, 2006; Baur et al., 2006; Ingram et al., 2006). Another group, the flavonols, are part of the flavonoid family that is found in various fruits, cocoa, beans and the Ginkgo biloba tree (Gómez-Pinilla, 2008). Flavonols contain anti-inflammatory properties among several other complex actions (for review, see Gómez-Pinilla, 2008). Although polyphenols are somewhat heterogeneous regarding their chemical properties, they seem to have some effects in common with regard to cardiovascular health and (at least for some polyphenols) antioxidant capacity (Halliwell, 2007; Habauzit and Morand, 2012).


Components of a Mediterranean diet and their impact on cognitive functions in aging.

Huhn S, Kharabian Masouleh S, Stumvoll M, Villringer A, Witte AV - Front Aging Neurosci (2015)

Postulated effects of Polyphenols including Resveratrol with regard to brain health and their main dietary sources.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4495334&req=5

Figure 2: Postulated effects of Polyphenols including Resveratrol with regard to brain health and their main dietary sources.
Mentions: A further class of substances that is supposed to contribute to the beneficial effects of the Mediterranean Diet (MeDi) is that of polyphenols (Figure 2). Polyphenols are secondary metabolites of plants and characterized by the chemical structure of hydroxyl groups on aromatic rings (Manach et al., 2004). They are quite abundant in our diet and several thousand molecules have been identified to have polyphenol character (Manach et al., 2004). One polyphenol agent that came into research focus is resveratrol (RSV). It occurs naturally in the skin of red grapes, red wine, blueberries, peanuts and Japanese knotweed (Baur and Sinclair, 2006; Baur et al., 2006; Ingram et al., 2006). Another group, the flavonols, are part of the flavonoid family that is found in various fruits, cocoa, beans and the Ginkgo biloba tree (Gómez-Pinilla, 2008). Flavonols contain anti-inflammatory properties among several other complex actions (for review, see Gómez-Pinilla, 2008). Although polyphenols are somewhat heterogeneous regarding their chemical properties, they seem to have some effects in common with regard to cardiovascular health and (at least for some polyphenols) antioxidant capacity (Halliwell, 2007; Habauzit and Morand, 2012).

Bottom Line: Recent studies also suggest an impact on cognition and brain structure, and increasing effort is made to track effects down to single nutrients.We summarized health benefits associated with the MeDi and evaluated available studies on the effect of (1) fish-consumption and LC-n3-FA supplementation as well as (2) diet-derived or supplementary polyphenols such as RSV, on cognitive performance and brain structure in animal models and human studies.A majority of available studies suggest that consumption of LC-n3-FA with fish or fishoil-supplements exerts positive effects on brain health and cognition in older humans.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Neurology, Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences Leipzig, Germany.

ABSTRACT

Background: Adhering to the Mediterranean diet (MeDi) is known to be beneficial with regard to many age-associated diseases including cardiovascular diseases and type 2 diabetes. Recent studies also suggest an impact on cognition and brain structure, and increasing effort is made to track effects down to single nutrients.

Aims: We aimed to review whether two MeDi components, i.e., long-chain omega-3 fatty acids (LC-n3-FA) derived from sea-fish, and plant polyphenols including resveratrol (RSV), exert positive effects on brain health in aging.

Content: We summarized health benefits associated with the MeDi and evaluated available studies on the effect of (1) fish-consumption and LC-n3-FA supplementation as well as (2) diet-derived or supplementary polyphenols such as RSV, on cognitive performance and brain structure in animal models and human studies. Also, we discussed possible underlying mechanisms.

Conclusion: A majority of available studies suggest that consumption of LC-n3-FA with fish or fishoil-supplements exerts positive effects on brain health and cognition in older humans. However, more large-scale randomized controlled trials are needed to draw definite recommendations. Considering polyphenols and RSV, only few controlled studies are available to date, yet the evidence based on animal research and first interventional human trials is promising and warrants further investigation. In addition, the concept of food synergy within the MeDi encourages future trials that evaluate the impact of comprehensive lifestyle patterns to help maintaining cognitive functions into old age.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus