Government nutritional review findings echo dementia risk messaging

Posted on 28th February 2018

Alzheimer’s Research UK is backing the findings of a Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) review on diet and its impact on cognitive impairment and dementia.

The committee today published a report that finds there is no conclusive evidence for nutrients or supplements to be used to prevent the onset of dementia. This is the first time the organisation has reviewed evidence in this area.

Alzheimer’s Research UK, the leading dementia research charity in the UK, supports the findings of the report and is calling for further government support to investigate ways to prevent Alzheimer’s disease and the other diseases that cause dementia.

Dr Matthew Norton, Director of Policy and Impact at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said:

“The findings of the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition’s study into diet and dementia echo the weight of evidence available so far in this area. The brain, just like other parts of the body, can be affected by the way we live our lives. While a balanced diet is one way to maintain a healthy brain, the best current evidence suggests supplements or nutrients offer no additional preventative value. Wider evidence points to a number of other lifestyle factors that can also play a role. Not smoking, staying mentally and physically active, only drinking in moderation and keeping blood pressure and cholesterol in check are all ways to keep the brain healthy into later life.

“The government plays an important role in setting guidelines for healthy living. From health checks and risk reduction information, to funding more prevention research, Alzheimer’s Research UK believes government plays a key role in dementia prevention. Last year Alzheimer’s Research UK invested in four new cutting-edge dementia prevention projects including those looking at lifestyle interventions and dietary advice.

“It is vital the government, alongside academic institutions and charities like Alzheimer’s Research UK, continues to raise awareness of key risk factors of dementia, as well as supporting new research to increase our understanding of the condition.”

Posted in Policy news