Consuming omega 3-rich complementary diet may help prevent onset of dementia

“It could turn out to be a highly effective and acceptable preventative measure against the onset of this illness in elderly institutionalised patients with slight cognitive deterioration”, pointed out the authors, scientists at the Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health at the University.

More than 24 million people throughout the world suffer from dementia, a figure which is likely to double every 20 years to reach more than 80 million by 2040. “The absence of curative treatment means that strategies for preventing the onset of dementia have special importance in the Public Health field”, stated Ms Maira Bes-Rastrollo, one of the research leaders.

Evaluation of cognitive and functional state

Ms. Maira Bes-Rastrollo highlights the fact that no random test has so far been undertaken in the primary prevention of this type of elderly patients: “Currently, we are at the stage of recruiting participants and in their basic evaluation”.

Thus, in order to carry out the research, two groups will be selected: one for intervention and who will have an omega 3 fatty acid-rich supplement added to their diet thrice-daily; the second is a control group, who will be administered a placebo. Both groups will have their cognitive and functional state evaluated at the start of the study and then again after a year, using a number of different scales which enable determining if there has been any improvement in this time. The methodology used to this end includes: Lobo’s Mini-Mental State Examination, Pfeiffer’s functional activity Short Portable Mental Status Questionnaire (SPMSQ), a verbal fluency test and the Clock Test.

Laura Juampérez
Universidad de Navarra
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