How to Help Reduce Your Risk of Alzheimer's With What You Eat
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November is Alzheimer's Awareness Month, and Maria Shriver is at the forefront of progress on the disease—which is also very personal to Rachael, whose father-in-law and many close friends and extended family members live with the condition. It's still incurable, but Maria—who founded the Women's Alzheimer's Movement after her father was diagnosed and after learning funding for research on the female brain is critically low despite two-thirds of all diagnoses being in women—says that the best way you can try to reduce Alzheimer's risk is through lifestyle choices, such as exercise and diet.
According to Maria, Mediterranean diets rich in good fats have been proven to be good for your brain. (Fun fact: areas in Italy and Greece have been dubbed "blue zones"—ie. places around the world statistically home to the longest living people.)
With that in mind, here are foods you could add to your diet to help reduce the risk of Alzheimer's:
- Whole grains
- Salmon (which contains Omega-3 fatty acids)
Maria says the prevention doctors she works with always recommend "eating the rainbow," meaning try to get in as many colors of fruit and veggies as possible because each contains different vitamins and minerals to keep your brain healthy.
An easy and tasty way to incorporate some of the "good" foods into your diet is a yogurt parfait. Maria's family eats this one ALL the time. Adjust the quantities and ingredients as you like.
Maria's Brain-Boosting Yogurt Parfait
- Layer whole-fat non-dairy Greek yogurt (a dairy version is fine, too) in a bowl.
- Add fresh seasonal berries, which are rich in antioxidants.
- Add chia seeds for some healthy fats.
Maria also likes to crumble one of her MOSH bars on top. She and her son Patrick worked with experts to create a grab-and-go protein bar specifically formulated for brain health—MOSH is the result. It contains brain-boosting superfoods, vitamins and nutrients, plus a portion of the proceeds go to the Women's Alzheimer's Movement.
Meanwhile, mark your calendars for November 18th. Maria's Women's Alzheimer's Movement is hosting a big virtual Alzheimer's summit with doctors, experts and celebrities. She'd love you to be a part of it!