A new study published in Archives of Neurology shows that people who eat a diet of olive oil, nuts, fish, poultry, and certain fruits and vegetables are at a lower risk for Alzheimer's. Eating foods specifically selected for their benefits to your brain health, such as foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, omega-6 fatty acids, vitamin E, vitamin B12 and folate can reduce the risk of the disease by up to 40%, and because Alzheimer's has no cure, prevention is key. "Diet is probably the easiest way to modify disease risk," Columbia University Alzheimer's researcher, Yian Gu says. In the study, those least likely to develop Alzheimer's ate more olive oil-based salad dressing, nuts, fish, tomatoes, poultry, cruciferous vegetables, fruits, and dark leafy greens; they also ate less red meat, organ meat and high-fat dairy products.
The foods recommended for brain health are the foods encouraged as part of a Mediterranean diet, which has already proven itself as heart-healthy. With all the conflicting news about food and health (a glass of wine is good for you, but wait -- not if you're at risk for breast cancer), it's a huge relief to learn that a healthy diet for your heart is also a healthy diet for your brain. And with all our food trends -- high carb, no carb, low-fat, raw -- it's reassuring to see multiple health platforms dovetail into one way of eating. In other words, for those looking to eat for good health and for good taste, the Mediterranean diet looks like it may be the way to go.
For those of us thinking in practical terms, as in what's going on the dinner table in a matter of hours, Michael Pollan's mantra can help simply things all around: "Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants." We've compiled 16 quick, affordable dinner recipes that follow the tenets of a Mediterranean diet (lots of vegetables, whole grains, fish, poultry, and healthy fats) from some of our favorite blogs and websites. Bon appetit!
- Roasted Red Pepper, Artichoke, Olive, and Parmesan Frittata
Lemony Chickpea Stirfry
- Red Quinoa Salad with Red Peppers and Pine Nuts
- Mediterranean Poached Eggs
- Spring Barley Risotto
- Broccoli Garlic Pasta
- Whole Wheat Greek Pizza
- Spicy Lemon Pepper Pasta with Broccoli
- Chicken Quinoa Stew
- Hudson Valley Chicken Club Sandwich
- Wine Poached Chicken with Charmoula and Chopped Salad
- Roast Cod with Potatoes and Onions
Seafood Couscous Paella
Roasted Salmon and Asparagus
Seared Arctic Char with Broccolini and Olives
- Bass in Artichoke and Tomato Broth
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