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Frontiers in Nutrition: Cranberries May Protect Against Alzheimer's Disease

Time : 2022-08-11 Hits : 59

Alzheimer's disease is a neurodegenerative disease and the most common form of dementia in the world. According to the statistics of the World Health Organization, one person is diagnosed with dementia every 3 seconds in the world, and Alzheimer's disease is the most important type.

Although knowledge and research on Alzheimer's disease are being updated every day, no proven treatment has yet been found. Therefore, scientists believe that it is crucial to seek some modifiable lifestyles for early prevention, such as some targeted changes in diet, which may help reduce the risk of disease. Numerous studies have shown that higher dietary flavonoid intake can effectively improve cognition in old age and prevent the occurrence of dementia. This is because flavonoids such as anthocyanins and proanthocyanidins, which are abundantly present in brightly colored berries, can help nourish nerves and improve human metabolism, thereby enhancing brain cognition. Cranberries are one of the flavonoid-rich berries, and their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties have long been recognized by the scientific community. To test the preventive effect of cranberries on Alzheimer's disease, researchers from Norwich Medical School, University of East Anglia, UK, recruited 60 cognitively healthy participants for the trial. The research team conducted a randomized, placebo-controlled trial of 60 cognitively healthy participants for 12 weeks to investigate the effects of eating cranberries on brain function and cholesterol. Half of the participants consumed freeze-dried cranberry powder, equivalent to a cup or 100 grams of fresh cranberries, and the other half took a placebo. Cognitive assessments, including memory and executive function, neuroimaging, and blood sample collection, were performed before and after the intervention to assess the effects of daily cranberry consumption on cognition, brain function, and biomarkers of neuronal signaling. The results showed that consuming cranberries significantly improved participants' memory of everyday events (visual episodic memory), neurological function and blood perfusion to the brain.

Specifically, long-term consumption of cranberries can effectively improve blood transport in the brain of the elderly, increase the supply of nutrients such as oxygen and glucose, thereby improving the neurological function of the elderly, especially memory consolidation and recovery, and prevent Alzheimer's occurrence of disease.

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