Consuming leafy green vegetables like spinach on a daily basis may help against mental decline, a new study suggests.
A team of researchers studied the eating habits and mental ability of more than 950 patients, for almost 5 years.
According to their findings, the adults who ate one or two servings of vegetables like spinach, mustard greens, kale or collards were less likely to experience mental deterioration, compared to those who did not consume any leafy greens.
Martha Clare Morris, a researcher at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago and the lead author of the study, explained that leafy green vegetables have a high content of vitamin K, which is known for its positive effects on the human brain.
The study showed that those who ate at least one serving of green leafy vegetables were more protected against mental decline.
Morris will present the results of her study at the American Society for Nutrition in Boston annual meeting.
Dr. Yvette Sheline, one of the researchers involved in the study, said that the findings are interesting and quite surprising.
Dr.Sheline, a professor of psychiatry and neurology at the the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, said that leafy green vegetables are known to have beneficial effects on mental health.
She added that what we consume, or don’t consume, can increase the risk of getting high blood pressure or developing vascular disease. Both conditions play an important role in the worsening of dementia, scientists say.
According to Dr. Sheline, no one really knows for sure how exactly leafy green vegetables can lower the risk of developing dementia.
She advises everyone to consume kale and spinach everyday because there is definitely no harm in it. In the meantime, the scientists are trying to figure out how eating these vegetables can decrease the risk of mental deterioration.
The researchers kept under observation 954 men and women who volunteered for the study.
The participants were observed for five years and every year, they had to complete a food and drinks questionnaire. Also, the volunteers had to undergo 19 mental skill tests.
The study showed that those who ate one or two servings of leafy greens on a daily basis had the mental capacity of someone younger by ten years, compared to the participants who did not consume the leafy greens.
Image Source: popsugar
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