People who consume more antioxidant flavonol-rich foods may have a slower rate of memory decline, according to a recent study done by Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.
Flavonols are a form of flavonoid, which is a natural component found in fruits, vegetables, cereals, tea, & wine. These natural compounds are known for their health benefits and are considered an essential ingredient in a variety of nutraceutical, pharmacological, therapeutic & cosmetic uses.
961 people with an age average of 81
A news statement stated that 961 persons were employed by the study. The participants, who were 81 years old on average and free of dementia, were asked to answer questions on their food intake. Additionally, students participated in yearly cognitive and memory assessments that required them to recall lists of words and numbers and arrange them in the proper sequence.
Additionally, they were questioned about their level of schooling, how much time they spent exercising, and how much time they spent reading and playing games, which are all brain stimulating activities. They had an average of seven years of follow-up.
Afterward, the participants were divided into five equal groups according to how many flavonols were present in their meals.
In comparison to the typical daily consumption of flavonols for US adults, which varies from 16 to 20 milligrammes (mg), the study population had an average dietary intake of total flavonols of about 10 mg. The highest group consumed an average of 15 mg daily, or around one cup of dark leafy greens, while the lowest group only took about 5 mg daily.
The research team used a global cognition score that representing the results of 19 cognitive tests to determine rates of cognitive decline. For those with no cognitive problems, the average score was 0.5; for those with mild cognitive impairment it was 0.2; and for people with Alzheimer’s disease -0.5.
Researchers found that the cognitive score of people with the highest flavonol intake declined less slowly than those with the lowest intake, at a rate of 0.4 units per decade after accounting for other variables affecting the rate of flavonol consumption can affect memory loss. such as age, gender and smoking.
The natural anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of flavonols, according to Thomas M. Holland, MD, MS, of Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, are probably to blame for this.
A link between higher amounts of flavonols and slower cognitive decline
By breaking down the flavonol into its four components (kaempferol, quercetin, myricetin and isorhamnetin), the research team also found the foods with the highest contribution for each category. According to the research report, they were kale, beans, tea, spinach & broccoli for kaempferol; tomatoes, kale, apples, & tea for quercetin; wine, tea, kale, oranges, & tomatoes for myricetin; and pears, olive oil, wine, & tomato sauce for isorhamnetin.
According to research author Holland, “it’s intriguing because our study suggests that adopting particular dietary habits may result in a slower rate of cognitive decline.” “People can easily take an active role in maintaining their brain health by doing something as simple as eating more fruits and vegetables and drinking more tea.”
Despite the fact that the study found a correlation between greater levels of flavonols and a slower pace of cognitive decline, Holland emphasised that this does not indicate flavonols are directly responsible for the slower rate of cognitive decline.
Another study weakness was that the food frequency questionnaire was self-reported. Though it is true, people may not remember exactly what they consume.
The results of the study were published in the journal Neurology