MIND and Mediterranean diets associated with later onset of Parkinson s disease

MIND and Mediterranean diets associated with later onset of Parkinson s disease
A new study from UBC researchers suggests a strong correlation between following the MIND and Mediterranean diets and later onset of Parkinson s disease (PD). While researchers have long known of neuroprotective effects of the MIND diet for diseases like Alzheimer s and dementia, this study is the first to suggest a link between this diet and brain health for Parkinson s disease (PD).


The MIND diet combines aspects of two very popular diets, the Mediterranean diet and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet.

"The study shows individuals with Parkinson s disease have a significantly later age of onset if their eating pattern closely aligns with the Mediterranean-type diet. The difference shown in the study was up to 17 years later in women and eight years later in men," says Dr. Silke Appel-Cresswell of the Pacific Parkinson s Research Centre, the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health and the Division of Neurology in the UBC Faculty of Medicine. "There is a lack of medications to prevent or delay Parkinson s disease yet we are optimistic that this new evidence suggests nutrition could potentially delay onset of the disease."

In a study of 176 participants, researchers looked at adherence to these types of diets, characterized by reduced meat intake and a focus on vegetables, fruits, whole grains and healthy fats, and the age of PD onset. They found that close adherence to these diets coincided with later onset of PD in women of up to 17.4 years, and 8.4 years in men. The MIND diet showed a more significant impact on women s health, whereas the Mediterranean diet did for the men. The differences in these two diets are subtle, but could serve as clues to the impacts specific foods and micronutrients may have on brain health.

The different effects of diet adherence between sexes are noteworthy as approximately 60 per cent of those diagnosed with Parkinson s disease are men.

"If we understand the sex differences between the MIND diet and Mediterranean diet then we might better understand the sex differences that drive Parkinson s disease in the first place," says lead researcher Avril Metcalfe-Roach, a PhD student at UBC s Michael Smith Laboratories.

These findings springboard to other research questions that could have significant impacts on the understanding of PD.

"It drives home the connection between the gut and the brain for this disease," says Dr. Brett Finlay, professor in the departments of biochemistry and molecular biology, and microbiology and immunology at UBC. "It also shows it s not just one disease that healthy eating can affect, but several of these cognitive diseases."

The research team plans to further examine the potential connection between the microbiome and its effect on the brain.

"There is so much benefit to eating healthy," says Metcalfe-Roach. "It is in everybody s best interest to try to keep your microbiome healthy, to try and eat a rich variety of plant-based and other healthy foods. This study provides even more evidence for what we already know -- that we should be trying to eat healthy and taking care of ourselves."

Materials provided by University of British Columbia . Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

University of British Columbia. "MIND and Mediterranean diets associated with later onset of Parkinson s disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 January 2021. .

University of British Columbia. "MIND and Mediterranean diets associated with later onset of Parkinson s disease." ScienceDaily. (accessed January 13, 2021).



Feb. 5, 2020 — Researchers have discovered that the genetic variant APOE4 -- long linked to dementia -- spurs the spread of harmful clumps of Parkinson s proteins through the brain. The findings suggest that ...

May 23, 2018 — Previous studies have found an association between two commonly used agrochemicals (paraquat and maneb) and Parkinson s disease. Now a professor has determined that low-level exposure to the ...

July 25, 2017 — Eating foods included in two healthy diets -- the Mediterranean or the MIND diet -- is linked to a lower risk for memory difficulties in older adults, according to a new ...

Mar. 27, 2017 — Around 100,000 Austrians suffer from Alzheimer s disease and 16,000 from Parkinson s. Experts estimate that, in view of the ageing population, these numbers are set to triple over the next ...
News Topics :
Blueberries and blackberries are among the brain protecting foods encouraged under the MIND diet. barbaradudzinska/shutterstock Relaxnews Published Wednesday, March 25, 2015 8 53AM EDT Researchers at Rush University in Chicago have developed...
The Mediterranean DASH diet recommends eating a leafy green vegetable and one other vegetable every day. Anna Hoychuk/shutterstock Relaxnews Published Wednesday, January 6, 2016 10 59AM EST A diet created to combat...
Eating a healthy diet, such as the Mediterranean diet, has a positive impact on health, but little is known about the effects of including unhealthy foods in an otherwise healthy...
There were some weight loss and health benefits for overweight adults who followed the Mediterranean, Intermittent Fasting and Paleo diets, though adherence to the diets dropped off considerably during the...
For the first time, the Mediterranean diet moved into first place, tied with the DASH diet. That s according to U.S. News & World Report s best diet rankings for...