Alzheimer’s disease is a concern in France about 900,000 people, and women suffer more often than men. Although it appears to be linked to genetic factors, the exact causes of the disease remain unclear. Environment, cardiovascular risk factors, and physical inactivity may play a role. This is why various studies have questioned how to slow down cognitive aging through diet.
Vitamins and minerals are involved in many biological pathways that support brain function, and deficiencies in older adults can increase the risk of cognitive decline and dementia. Therefore, it is questionable whether the use of multivitamin supplements prevents cognitive decline in the elderly.
Multivitamins for the elderly
The COSMOS-Mind study (A study on the effects of cocoa supplements and multivitamins on the mind) wanted to see whether daily 3-year use of cocoa extract (containing 500 mg of flavanols per day) compared to placebo and a multivitamin supplement (MVM) improved cognition in 2,262 women and men with an average age of 73 years.
Separate tests assessed cognitive status, recall of word lists, creation of verbal tracks, verbal fluency, recall of numbers and their order. Executive function and memory were also assessed.
Results: Cocoa extract had no effect on global cognition. In contrast, compared to placebo, daily vitamin and mineral supplementation resulted in a statistically significant improvement in global cognition; this effect was even more pronounced in participants with cardiovascular disease. The supplement also improved memory and executive function. The researchers estimated that after three years of taking multivitamin supplements, a cognitive decline is slowed by about 60%, or about 1.8 years. These results appear in the journal Alzheimer’s disease and dementia: Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association.
Therefore, COSMOS-Mind is the first large controlled clinical trial to demonstrate the benefit of vitamin and mineral supplementation in older adults to improve their cognitive function. The benefit of this supplement appears to be greater in adults with cardiovascular disease who are at increased risk for cognitive impairment.
What vitamins and minerals are good for the brain?
To The end of Alzheimer’sDale Bredesen explains the possible link between vitamins B6, B12 and folic acid and the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. This link involves homocysteine: High levels of homocysteine are a known risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease.
Gold “Methionine is converted to homocysteine, which in turn is converted back to methionine or cysteine (another amino acid). This requires vitamin B12, vitamin B6, folic acid, and betaine (another amino acid). If you have enough of these B vitamins and betaine, you will have no trouble managing homocysteine , and its levels will stay low enough to not cause problems for your body. But if, like most people, your vitamin and betaine stores are low, homocysteine will build up in your body and cause damage to your blood vessels and brain.”