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Sam Bennett

Sam Bennett

22 Jul 2023


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MIND Diet Trial: No Significant Cognitive Improvements Found

The MIND diet trial, led by the Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center in Chicago. Aimed to investigate the effects of the MIND diet on cognitive health.

However, after three years, the trial found no significant improvement in the participants. Compared to a control group that followed a diet with mild caloric restriction.

This outcome was detailed in a paper titled “Trial of the MIND Diet for Prevention of Cognitive Decline in Older Persons,” published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The Participants in the MIND Diet Trial

MIND Diet Trial

The MIND diet trial involved 604 older adults who had a family history of dementia, a body mass index greater than 25, and a reported suboptimal diet.

The participants were divided into two groups. One followed the MIND diet, and the other followed a control diet with mild caloric restriction.

The study aimed to assess whether the MIND diet could improve cognition and brain health. Potentially protecting against cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease.

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The Outcome of the Trial

The MIND diet trial used cognitive function tests and brain imaging to assess the participants. However, the changes in cognition and brain MRI outcomes from the start of the study to the third year did not significantly differ between the two groups.

This suggests that the MIND diet, which is based on the Mediterranean and DASH diets. And has been associated with preserving brain health, did not significantly improve cognitive health in the participants of the MIND diet.

The authors of the MIND diet trial pointed out that previous diet trials have shown mixed results. They suggested that research bias and confounding factors might be responsible for the discrepancies.

MIND Diet Trial

For example, wealth disparities reflected in diet, such as living in food deserts, shift work, or health care access, could influence the outcomes of diet studies.

The MIND diet trial aimed to avoid these confounding factors by recruiting individuals with similar suboptimal diets and body mass.

The MIND diet trial highlights the challenges in studying the effects of diet on cognitive health. The authors suggest that the design or execution of the experiments, differences in diet duration or follow-up periods.

The presence of unscreened preexisting medical conditions, and participant conformity to the study diets could all play a role in the mixed results of diet studies. As such, future diet studies will need to consider these factors to provide more accurate and reliable results.

MIND Diet Trial: No Significant Cognitive Improvements Found