While several well-known studies have found that the Mediterranean diet lowers the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, other studies have failed to confirm these findings. According to authors of a recent paper published in the journal Neurology, differences in the methods used and subjectivity of clinical diagnosis may account for some of the inconsistent results.
To remove bias in clinical assessment, researchers from Columbia University used MRI-based neuroimaging to examine the role of the Mediterranean diet on structural changes that occur due to aging.
The investigators used specific MRI biomarkers to assess structural changes, brain volume and cortical thickness of 674 elderly, dementia-free subjects, whose average age was 80 years.
The multiethnic subjects living in northern Manhattan completed food frequency questionnaires which were used to calculate Mediterranean Diet Scores and determine adherence to the Mediterranean diet.