Why feeing carrots, kale and sweet potatoes could prevent dementia as you grow older
Older adults who had low levels of carotenoids relied on more brain power
While those with higher sums didn’t require as much brain activity
The powerful compounds can be found in a range of colourful vegetables
Eating carrots, kale and sweet potatoes could prevent dementia in older adults, new research suggests.
Consuming the compounds that dedicate plants and vegetables their vibrant colours can bolster brain functioning in older adults.
Those who had lower levels of carotenoids in their system had to rely on more brain power to complete memory-orientated chores, scientists found.
The powerful compounds can be found in a range of colourful vegetables and are known to improve cognitive ability.
Consuming carotenoids- the compounds that dedicate plants and vegetables their vibrant colours- can bolster brain functioning in older adults, scientists claim
Researchers from the University of Georgia utilized functional MRI technology to investigate how high levels of carotenoids affect brain activity.
They gauged the brain activity of more than 40 adults between 65 and 86 years old while they attempted to recall term pairings the latter are taught earlier.
Brain activity was then analysed while the participants were in the MRI scanner.
They found individuals with higher levels of lutein and zeaxanthin didn’t require as much brain activity to complete the task.
However, those with lower levels had to use more brain power and relied more heavily on different parts of the brain in order to remember the words.
Lead researcher Cutter Lindbergh said:’ There’s a natural deterioration process that occurs in the brain as people age, but the brain is great at compensating for that.
‘One way it compensates is by calling on more brain power to get a job done so it can maintain the same level of cognitive performance.
‘It’s in the interest of society to look at ways to buffer these deterioration processes to prolong functional independence in older adults .
‘Changing diets or adding supplements to increase lutein and zeaxanthin levels might be one strategy to help with that.’
Those who had lower levels of carotenoids in their system had to rely on more brain power to complete memory-orientated chores, a study found
Researchers received no relationship between the levels of the compounds and the number of words they could recall.
But they say this demonstrated how the brain went into overdrive to compensate for their diminished ability.
Mr Lindbergh added:’ On the surface, it looked like everyone was doing the same thing and recollecting the same words.
‘But when you pop the hood and look at what’s actually going on in the brain, there are significant differences related to their carotenoid levels.’
They now aim to test whether including more vegetables that have carotenoids into a diet could boost cognitive function.
The study was published in the Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society.
Previous research has determined feeing carrots can cut the risk of hard-to-treat breast cancer by up to 60 per cent because of their carotene.
While other studies have found lutein and zeaxanthin can bolster eye health and slacken cognitive decline in older adults .
Source: Daily Mail