Eat your way out of an Alzheimer’s diagnosis

The scope and breadth of nutritional research has never been greater than it is now. (Granted, much of it is either ignored or endlessly repeated, but beggars can’t be choosers.) Yesterday’s discussion of the heart-healthy benefits of cocoa flavonols is just one example.

So I’d like to keep the conversation about flavonoids going today. And share the stunning results of a recent study, which showed that dietary flavonols can lower your risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease (AD) significantly.

Cut cognitive decline by half

Now, as you may recall, this isn’t the first time research has linked dietary flavonoid intake to lower risk of cognitive decline. Or to a lower risk of AD in particular. But here’s what this latest research found…

Researchers used data from the Rush Memory and Aging Project (MAP)—an ongoing study of mostly older women in Chicago that started in 1997. And they discovered that subjects with the highest total flavonol intake were a whopping 48 percent less likely to develop AD.

Three flavonols in particular offered the most protective benefits: Subjects with the highest intake of kaempferol saw their risk cut in half. And high intake of isorhamnetin and myricetin both slashed risk by 38 percent each.

These names might sound unfamiliar—some of them are even new to me—but their top food sources are probably sitting in your kitchen right now.

In this case, kale, beans, tea, spinach, and broccoli were the main sources of kaempferol. Tea, wine, kale, oranges, and tomatoes did it for myricetin. And pears, olive oil, wine, and tomato sauce were behind the highest isorhamnetin intakes.

The researchers also made adjustments to rule out the influence of other factors—like vitamin E, folate, and fish oil intake. And they found that high dietary flavonol intake delivered these staggering risk reductions all by themselves.

And considering the fact that these natural compounds carry antioxidant and anti-inflammatory powers, that’s not too surprising.

The total package is important

The above food lists are by no means exhaustive. You’ll find a wide array of flavonols in dozens of fresh, organic, whole fruits and vegetables particularly—that’s the beauty of Mother Nature. And it’s about time people started giving credit where it’s due.

I probably don’t need to point out that modern medicine prefers to focus on the individual components of any given food or plant. (The entire pharmaceutical industry is built on this—slapping a patent and high price tag on synthetic versions of natural substances is their specialty.)

But this research is a good reminder that when it comes to disease prevention, the total package is important. And when it comes to food, there’s usually more than one substance at work. Which is why I always recommend a balanced diet full of fresh, healthy, whole foods—like my ­A-List Diet.

Studies like this give me hope that scientists are finally starting to understand the importance of a holistic approach to preventing and treating disease. But you can count on me to keep hammering the point home until conventional medicine comes around.

So I’ll do that today by reminding you that while diet is the main key to good health, you can’t ignore physical and social activity, brain exercises, good sleep hygiene, and stress reduction, either. Especially in the fight against AD.

My Alzheimer’s Prevention and Repair Plan covers all of these bases. It’s the best defense against cognitive decline you’ve got—and the earlier you take action, the better. So what are you waiting for? Click here to learn more, or to enroll today.


“First Evidence Dietary Flavonols Linked to Lower Alzheimer Risk.” Medscape Medical News, 01/30/2020. (