Scientists from Yale University found how ultra-processed foods could strongly harm brain function.
They showed foods such as instant noodles, sugary drinks and frozen meals all play a factor in a faster rate of cognitive decline.
The research was presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference and was conducted by Rafael Perez-Escamilla et al.
Previous studies have shown that ultra-processed food consumption is linked to health problems like obesity, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancers.
Some studies on ultra-processed foods have indicated signs of cognitive decline before, namely with increased risk of dementia.
In the current study, the team examined the diets and cognition of 10,000 middle-aged and older people.
They found that participants who were getting 20% or more of their daily calories from ultra-processed foods had a much faster cognitive decline over 6 to 10 years compared to people who ate few processed foods.
Researchers say that processed foods require little preparation and are often easy to consume because they usually don’t lead to feeling as full as when eating whole foods like fruits, vegetables, beans, potatoes, eggs, seafood, or meat.
And a wide array of ultra-processed foods can be disguised or even promoted as healthy.
Processed foods are items with very few whole ingredients and often contain flavorings, colorings, or other additives.
They include bread, crackers, cookies, fried snacks, cream cheese, ice cream, candy, soda, and hot dogs. Frozen meals are also at the forefront of processed foods.
If you care about brain health, please read studies about the best foods for brain health, and two common habits that can make your brain age fast.
For more information about brain health, please see recent studies about how salt harms blood flow in the brain, and results showing that low blood pressure may strongly harm health in older people.
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