2017 round-up of things that were reported to prevent dementia

December 12, 2017

This year, we’ve seen many wonderful reports of things that can reduce our risk of dementia. From eating marmite to using a sauna, we took to social media to share all the latest research with you. With so many posts, we thought that we would collect all the stories and share them with you here, just in case you missed any of them.


So here is our 2017 round-up of things that can reportedly help to prevent dementia. It is important to approach these findings with scepticism. Dementia is a complex disease with many different causes but we do not yet fully understand the exact contribution of each of the factors. This means that it is unlikely that there will be one single cure. 


Eating a diet rich in mushrooms 



A study by Pennsylvania State University recently revealed that the popular edible fungi contains unusually high amounts of particular antioxidants, which could have an anti-ageing effect on the brain. Porcini were discovered to have the highest amounts of these antioxidants.


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Vampire Therapy


Not quite as gruesome as it sounds, the so called ‘Vampire Therapy’ involves pumping the blood of young people into the elderly to help ward of symptoms of dementia. Patients who were part of a trial reported a marked improvement in Alzheimer’s symptoms and found it easier to carry out daily tasks such as taking medication, paying bills or preparing meals.


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Socialising & learning new skills


In a report by AGE UK this year, they warned us that contrary to popular belief, Crosswords, Sudoku and online ‘brain training’ games have little benefit for brain health and memory. Instead, AGE UK and the Global Council on Brain Health recommend that people should be concentrating on socialising and learning new skills, such as a foreign language. The reasoning behind this is that there is insufficient evidence that improvements in game performance will improve people’s overall functioning in everyday life. They also recommend practising tai-chi or taking photography classes.


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Drinking tea daily



According to new research, drinking black tea (such as English breakfast or Earl Grey) green or oolong tea reduced the risk of cognitive impairment in older people by 50%. In those who were genetically at risk of Alzheimer’s disease, the risk was reduced even further by 86%.


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Mediterranean diets


At the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference, it was announced that healthy eating habits, particularly the Mediterranean diet may lower our risk of developing cognitive impairment up to 35%. The so called ‘Mind’ diet, is full of fruits, vegetables and whole grains and low in saturated fats, processed flour and sugar.


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A study has shown that those who ate just a teaspoon of the yeast extract each day saw changes in the electrical activity of their brain. Researchers said the high concentration of Vitamin B12 in Marmite increases levels of chemicals which are thought to protect against neurological disorders.


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Sleeping less than nine hours


Scientists studied the sleep patterns of thousands of older people and found a link between those who start to sleep longer hours and the onset of dementia. Those who began sleeping more than nine hours a night but previously slept less than nine hours, were twice as likely to develop dementia, the study concluded.


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Using a sauna 


Scientists found that men who use a sauna four to seven times a week reduced their chance of being diagnosed with the disease by up to 65% compared to those who used it just once a week. This is because saunas are thought to improve circulation and reduce blood pressure, both of which could go some way to reducing your risk of getting dementia.


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Consuming a 'viking' diet


A Swedish study carried out on 2223 people found that those who were relatively good or very good at sticking to the diet experienced a smaller decline in memory and thinking skills. The Nordic diet is very high in fish, non-root vegetables, fruit, rice and chicken. It also includes light to moderate consumption of wine and is high in water. The diet avoids eating too many root vegetables, potatoes and refined grains.


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Eating fish


No longer an old wives tale, eating fish can help to improve your memory! It has been found that consuming plenty of salmon, mackerel and sardines prevents Alzheimer’s disease by boosting blood flow to specific areas of the brain that control memory and learning. In addition, Omega-3 fatty acids have been found to prevent brain inflammation and combat rogue proteins that are found in Alzheimer’s patients.


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So there you have it! Our round-up of things that can reportedly prevent dementia in 2017. Hopefully 2018 will bring us one step closer to finding a cure.






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