Originally published November 12 2008
High Fat Diet Linked to Memory Loss
by David Gutierrez, staff writer
(NaturalNews) A pair of new studies has suggested that a high-fat diet may contribute to memory loss and the cognitive decline associated with Alzheimer's disease.
In the first study, conducted by researchers from the Medical University of South Carolina and Arizona Statue University, and published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, researchers fed rats a diet high in cholesterol (2 percent) and saturated trans fats (10 percent hydrogenated coconut oil). These rats were found to have significantly higher levels of triglycerides and cholesterol when compared with rats fed a calorically similar diet that was lower in saturated fat (12 percent soybean oil). Rats in both groups gained approximately the same amount of weight while on the diets.
The rats in the high cholesterol, high-saturated fat group also performed worse on a radial arm maze test, signifying a worse working memory than the rats that had eaten soybean oil. They were found to have higher levels of inflammation in their brains, as well as damage to the integrity of their nerve cells.
Brain inflammation is known to be caused by a poor diet, and is associated with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease. It is believed that brain inflammation may also cause failure of the eyes and ears.
In the second study, published in the journal Nutrition Research, researchers from the Baycrest Health Center in Toronto fed adult humans with Type 2 diabetes either a control meal of drinking water; a high-fat meal of cheddar cheese, yogurt and whipped cream; or the same high fat meal with supplements of 1,000 milligrams of vitamin C and 800 IU of Vitamin E. Starting 15 minutes after their meal, the participants were given a 90 minute test on their ability to remember information from something they had read.
Those given the high-fat diet performed 25 percent worse than the control group or those who had eaten a high-fat diet plus vitamins.
"So you would be taking a young, middle-aged person and have them function as an older person effectively, in terms of their memory, simply by eating a meal," researcher Carol Greenwood said.
Sources for this story include: www.upi.com; www.foodproductdesign.com.
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