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Eur J Neurol. 2009 Sep;16 Suppl 1:1-7. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-1331.2009.02735.x.

The role of nutrition in Alzheimer's disease: epidemiological evidence.

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  • 1Section of Nutritional Epidemiology and Nutrition, Department of Internal Medicine, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, IL, USA.


The prevalence of Alzheimer's disease (AD) increases exponentially with age but there is limited knowledge of the modifiable risk factors for AD. However, there is growing evidence for possible dietary risk factors in the development of AD and cognitive decline with age, such as antioxidant nutrients, fish, dietary fats, and B-vitamins. Numerous animal and laboratory studies have shown that antioxidant nutrients can protect the brain from oxidative and inflammatory damage, but there are limited data available from epidemiological studies. There is more substantial epidemiological evidence from a number of recent studies that demonstrate a protective role of omega-3 fatty acids, such as docosahexaenoic acid, in AD and cognitive decline. This review will focus on epidemiological evidence investigating the relationship between nutrition and AD, focusing particularly on the roles of dietary fats and antioxidants.

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