The Research Of Juice
Fruit and vegetable juices may play an important role in delaying the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, particularly among those who are at high risk for the disease. Researchers previously maintained the belief that Alzheimer's Disease is entirely genetic and unpreventable. More recent studies suggest that this could possibly be the greatest misconception about the disease. Researchers now know that Alzheimer's, much like heart disease and cancer, develops over decades and can be influenced by multiple lifestyle factors including cholesterol, blood pressure, obesity, depression, education, nutrition, sleep and mental, physical, and social activity.
Researchers from Vanderbilt and The University of Bari in Bari, Italy have found evidence that fruit and vegetable intake may prevent cognitive decline, dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease.
In this study, researchers followed around 2,000 Japanese-American adults from King County, Washington, from 1992 to 2001, as part of the Ni-Hon-Sea Project, a cross-cultural study of prevalence and incidence rates of Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia among Japanese populations living in Hiroshima, Japan; Oahu, Hawaii; and the metropolitan area of Seattle, Washington. The participants were 65 years or older and displayed no signs or symptoms of Alzheimer's or dementia at the beginning of the study. The average age of this group was 72 years at the start of the study.
The dietary measurement of the study involved a self-administered, semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire developed for Asian populations to obtain usual dietary intake of food, that included tea, wine, and fruit and vegetable juices. Each food item had multiple frequency options and portion sizes, which were chosen from provided pictures. Of 1836 dementia-free cohort members, 1589 (86.5%) completed the food frequency questionnaire. With the measurements, usual dietary in-take of nutrients, including total energy, vitamins C and E, and beta-carotene, was calculated from an assembled food composition database, which included the US Department of Agriculture’s database.
After adjusting for possible confounding factors, like smoking, educational status, and physical activity, the researchers found people who drank fruit and vegetable juices more than three times a week had a 76% lower risk of probable Alzheimer's disease compared with those who drank juice less than once a week. Drinking fruit or vegetable juice once or twice a week was associated with a 16% lower risk. Conversely, no association was observed for dietary intake of vitamins E, C, or beta- carotene or tea consumption.
Previous studies have concluded that Japanese adults living in Japan have a lower incidence of Alzheimer's disease than Japanese adults living in the United States. These higher rates of the disease, suggested that environmental factors such as diet and lifestyle likely play a consequential role in the development of Alzheimer's disease.
What next steps will you take to maintain your cognitive function and prevent Alzheimer’s?
One class of antioxidant chemicals, known as polyphenols, could be the culprit for Alzheimer’s fighting tonic. Ingestion of polyphenols occurs by consuming a wide array of plant foods. teas, juices, and wines. Polyphenols have recently been termed “lifespan essentials”, and they actively work in the body to prevent certain disease mechanisms from occurring. Boosting one's intake of antioxidant polyphenols on a daily basis is easy to do, and can be a tasty, gourmet adventure.
Maintaining high levels of polyphenols in your body and bloodstream throughout the day is important! Blood levels of polyphenols will peak soon after they are consumed, then decrease as they are metabolized or excreted from the body.
Green and Black Tea
Green tea is made from unfermented leaves and contains the highest concentration of these powerful antioxidants—polyphenols. These antioxidants also fight free radicals—which are damaging compounds in the body that have the power to damage DNA and cause cell death. The polyphenols in green and black tea neutralize free radicals and can potentially prevent some of the damage they cause.
It only takes a cup of black or green tea a week to cut rates of cognitive decline by 37%, reports the Alzheimer's Association. However, be sure to stick to brewed tea and skip bottled tea, which is devoid of many antioxidants.
Fruit and Vegetables
Organically raised plants tend to be much higher in polyphenols. An Italian study found pesticides reduce the content of polyphenols. Plants actually produce polyphenols in order to protect themselves from diseases and pests, especially when grown in less than ideal conditions.
Rich colors such as reds, purples, and blacks indicate that plant foods are rich sources of polyphenols. Choose foods such as blueberries, pomegranates, red grapes, cranberries, and red or purple sweet potatoes. Blueberries as well as foods such as black rice, purple barley, black sorghum, and purple potatoes are sources of polyphenols.
Be sure to leave the peel on your fruits and veggies when sending them through your juicer because Polyphenols dwell most richly in the skins and peels.
Red Wine & Beer
For the sake of antioxidants, drink red wine and beer instead of other alcoholic beverages. Hard liquor is distilled which almost eliminates the content of polyphenols.
Beer contains a great variety of polyphenols because it is produced with barley and hops. Barley provides the majority of the polyphenols found in beer, but hops are an important source of a variety of polyphenols. For the highest concentrations of polyphenols, choose well-hopped bitter beers such as India Pale Ales or dark beers. Dark malt that is used to make dark beers provides melanoidin antioxidants that actually may help to keep the hop polyphenol antioxidants in the beer during the brewing process.
Chocolate and cocoa are two of the richest sources of polyphenols. Choose dark, bitter chocolate and unsweetened cocoa.
So fight to keep your cognitive function and stop by your neighborhood grocery today and grab a couple carafes of some of the best fruit juice out there, like preservative free, Simply Apple, or Naked then be sure to care for your valentine well this year with the most polyphenol rich gifts: wine and dark chocolate.