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Nutrients. 2019 Jul 4;11(7). pii: E1521. doi: 10.3390/nu11071521.

A Mediterranean Diet with Fresh, Lean Pork Improves Processing Speed and Mood: Cognitive Findings from the MedPork Randomised Controlled Trial.

Author information

1
Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity, School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, GPO Box 2471, 5001 Adelaide, Australia. alexandra.wade@mymail.unisa.edu.au.
2
Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity, School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, GPO Box 2471, 5001 Adelaide, Australia.
3
School of Medical and Health Sciences, Edith Cowan University, Perth, WA 6027, Australia.
4
Medical School, University of Western Australia, 35 Stirling Highway, Perth, WA 6000, Australia.
5
Flinders Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Flinders University, GPO Box 2100, 5042 Adelaide, Australia.
6
Cognitive Ageing and Impairment Neurosciences, University of South Australia, GPO Box 2471, 5005 Adelaide, Australia.
7
School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences, University of South Australia, GPO Box 2471, 5005 Adelaide, Australia.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The Mediterranean diet may be capable of improving cognitive function. However, the red meat restrictions of the diet could impact long-term adherence in Western populations. The current study therefore examined the cognitive effects of a Mediterranean diet with additional red meat.

METHODS:

A 24-week parallel crossover design compared a Mediterranean diet with 2-3 weekly servings of fresh, lean pork (MedPork) and a low-fat (LF) control diet. Thirty-five participants aged between 45 and 80 years and at risk of cardiovascular disease followed each intervention for 8 weeks, separated by an 8-week washout period. Cognitive function was assessed using the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery. Psychological well-being was measured through the SF-36 Health Survey and mood was measured using the Profile of Mood States (POMS).

RESULTS:

During the MedPork intervention, participants consumed an average of 3 weekly servings of fresh pork. Compared to LF, the MedPork intervention led to higher processing speed performance (p = 0.01) and emotional role functioning (p = 0.03). No other significant differences were observed between diets.

CONCLUSION:

Our findings indicate that a Mediterranean diet inclusive of fresh, lean pork can be adhered to by an older non-Mediterranean population while leading to positive cognitive outcomes.

KEYWORDS:

MedDiet; ageing; cardiovascular disease; cognitive function; protein

PMID:
31277446
PMCID:
PMC6683093
DOI:
10.3390/nu11071521
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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