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Adherence to Dietary Patterns and Risk of Incident Dementia: Findings from the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study.

TitleAdherence to Dietary Patterns and Risk of Incident Dementia: Findings from the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsHu EA, Wu A, Dearborn JL, Gottesman RF, Sharrett ARichey, Steffen LM, Coresh JJ
Secondary AuthorsRebholz CM
JournalJ Alzheimers Dis
Date Published2020

BACKGROUND: Previous studies have suggested that adherence to healthy dietary patterns during late life may be associated with improved cognition. However, few studies have examined the association between healthy dietary patterns during midlife and incident dementia.

OBJECTIVE: Our study aimed to determine the association between adherence to healthy dietary patterns at midlife and incident dementia.

METHODS: We included 13,630 adults from the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) Study in our prospective analysis. We used food frequency questionnaire responses to calculate four dietary scores: Healthy Eating Index-2015 (HEI-2015), Alternative Healthy Eating Index-2010 (AHEI-2010), alternate Mediterranean (aMed) diet, and Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH). Participants were followed until the end of 2017 for incident dementia. Cox regression models adjusted for covariates were used to estimate risk of incident dementia by quintile of dietary scores.

RESULTS: Over a median of 27 years, there were 2,352 cases of incident dementia documented. Compared with participants in quintile 1 of HEI-2015, participants in quintile 5 (healthiest) had a 14% lower risk of incident dementia (hazard ratio, HR: 0.86, 95% confidence interval, CI: 0.74-0.99). There were no significant associations of incident dementia with the AHEI-2010, aMed, or DASH scores. There were no significant interactions by sex, age, race, education, physical activity, hypertension, or obesity.

CONCLUSION: Adherence to the HEI-2015, but not the other dietary scores, during midlife was associated with lower risk of incident dementia. Further research is needed to elucidate whether timing of a healthy diet may influence dementia risk.

Alternate JournalJ Alzheimers Dis
PubMed ID33044177