Looking after our mental health is a growing concern as we get older. According to the Alzheimer’s Society there are over 800,000 people with dementia in the UK with numbers set to rise to over 1 million by 2021. There are over 17,000 people under 65 with dementia in the UK and the numbers of people with dementia will soar to 1.7 million by 2050.
There is evidence emerging from recent research studies that eating right in midlife may prevent dementia later. One such study includes a new doctoral thesis published by the University of Eastern Finland published in the International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders and Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease. The results indicated those who consistently consumed healthy foods at the average age of 50 had a nearly 90 per cent lower risk of dementia in a 14-year follow-up study compared to those who did not eat healthfully.
With the increase in dementia and developing evidence about the benefits of healthy eating, more attention to our brain health is vitally important. As much as we do not want to face up to reality we are all getting older and brain health is about looking after the grey matter in those twilight years. With mindful eating we can help ourselves to improve our chances of protecting the ravages of time. Dementia is more and more prevalent mainly because we are all living longer, so in the same way that we prepare a pension for those latter years we need to lay down foundations and invest in our health too.
WeightMatters runs a regular workshop ‘Ravages of Time / Brain Health’
Author – Helen West