Are you following a balanced diet? Study finds it may boost brain health and cognition

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New Delhi: Cognitive health is one of the major aspects of overall brain health and well-being. Unhealthy eating is one of the health behaviours that have been associated with poor brain health. A bad diet has been linked to reduced cognitive performance and has also been linked to progression of cognitive decline and even dementia. A recent study has found that a balanced diet may help in better brain health and cognition.

The study has been published in the journal Nature Mental Health, where the researchers have investigated the brain health domains of individuals who have noticed four distinct subtypes of diet, including starch-free, vegetarian, high-protein-low-fibre and balanced diet. Through using the neuroimaging, biochemical and genetic examination the researchers have found that people who follow a balanced diet subtyped showed better results when it came to cognitive functions and mental health as compared to other people.

Link between diet patterns and brain health

According to the study, there is a strong relationship between dietary patterns and brain health as it involves changes in molecular biomarkers, gut microbiota and brain structure. There have been links that have been established between the high sugar and saturated fat intake to cognitive decline and psychiatric disorders.

On the other hand, unhealthy diets majorly followed in the Western set-up have been shown to be linked with higher risks of depression and psychiatric issues as compared to the people following balanced diets especially those that are rich in plant-based foods.

Mediterranean diet may reduce neurodegenerative diseases

The study also noted that the Mediterranean diet is linked with better brain health and reduced risk of neurodegenerative diseases.

As per the findings of the study, the sample sizes and the criteria for defining dietary patterns indicate that there is a need for a standardised classification system and more detailed studies.

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