Omega-3s cut risk of dementia

November 15, 2006 in Nutrition Topics in the News

Omega-3s cut risk of dementia

Researchers at Tufts University in Boston have found that increased levels of the omega-3 fatty acid docosahexaenioc acid (DHA) could lower the risk of dementia and Alzheimer's disease.

The study, of nearly 900 men and women were part of the population-based Framingham Heart Study. Participants provided blood samples and underwent neuropsychological testing and filled out food frequency questionnaires to assess their diet.

After a follow up period of nine years, researchers found that men and women who had the highest levels of DHA had a 47 percent lower risk of developing dementia and 39 percent lower risk of developing Alzheimer's disease than people with lower levels.

Participants with the highest levels of DHA reported eating an average of 2.9 fish servings per week.

These latest findings add to a growing body of research linking omega-3 fatty acids to improved cognitive function. They were published in the Archives if Neurology (Vol. 63, pp.1545-1550).

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