Can Flavonoids Reduce Cognitive Decline?
Doug Jones • May 26, 2022
People who consume a minimum of half a serving per day of foods high in flavonoids may have a 20% lower risk of cognitive decline. Flavonoids are plant compounds with a variety of health benefits that are found in almost all fruits and vegetables. Considered a powerful antioxidant, there are six primary types of flavonoids, each with health-promoting effects.
According to research published in the American Academy of Neurology, eating foods that contained flavonoids like apples, oranges, and peppers can reduce neuroinflammation and oxidative stress. Flavonoids can also enhance cognitive function at a behavioral level while reducing cognitive decline due to brain disorders.
The people in the study who ate the most flavonoids had about 600 mg in their daily diet while the lowest had about 150 mg each day. Taking into account their age and caloric intake, the more flavonoids people ate on a daily basis, the lower their risk of cognitive decline. Clinical data also supports the memory enhancing effects of flavonoids. For example, drinking green tea or eating blueberries has been shown to enhance working memory.
Research revealed that individual flavonoids, like flavones, had the strongest protective qualities. Flavones found in some spices and yellow or orange fruits and vegetables were associated with a 38% reduction in risk of cognitive decline, which is the equivalent of being almost four years younger in age. With the average life expectancy increasing, promoting long-term brain health has become more prevalent.
Phytonutrients like flavonoids act as dietary antioxidants and can not only prevent cognitive diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia but can also deter the development of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and even cancer.
Successful nutrigenomics programs are designed to help individuals gain insight into how diet and lifestyle choices affect chronic conditions. Based on each individual’s unique genetic makeup, such programs offer the support and guidance of registered dietitians to make the best possible decisions for the highest quality health outcomes.
BASE10’s nutrigenomics program is supplemented with a genetic nutrition test kit that enables registered dietitians to create a health and wellness plan based specifically on an individual’s gene makeup. With the help of experienced registered dietitian nutritionists, it’s becoming more accessible for everyone to make informed health decisions that will impact their life for years to come.
Here are some tips to incorporate more flavonoids in your diet:
Berries: Blueberries make a fantastic addition to your breakfast oatmeal. And blackberries can do wonders for your yogurt if you’re looking for a snack. You can even add strawberries to your salad
Parsley: Make a Tabouleh salad for the week
Green Tea: Try green tea instead of a second coffee
Veggies: Buy a veggie tray to keep on hand for quick and healthy snacking. Add some shredded red cabbage to your salads or tacos!
How about a recipe?
Homemade Chia Seed Jam
Heat 2 cups of fresh or frozen berries in a pan until fruit is broken down and bubbling, then mash to desired consistency. Stir in 2 tbs chia seeds, 1 tbs lemon juice, and 1 tbs honey if needed. Cool for 5 minutes until thickened and store in the fridge. Delicious! It’s great on whole grain toast.
Sign up and join us for BASE10’s upcoming webinar on Thursday, July 28th at 1PM CST: “Understanding Cardiovascular Disease Through a Different Lens with Precision Medicine.”
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