J Prev Alz Dis 2014;1(3):160-167

Cereal intake increases and dairy products decrease risk of cognitive decline among elderly female Japanese.


BACKGROUND: If cognitive decline can be prevented through changes in daily diet with no medical intervention, it will be highly significant for dementia prevention.
OBJECTIVES: This longitudinal study examined the associations of different food intakes on cognitive decline among Japanese subjects.
DESIGN: Prospective cohort study.
SETTING: The National Institute for Longevity Sciences - Longitudinal Study of Aging, a community-based study.
PARTICIPANTS: Participants included 298 males and 272 females aged 60 to 81 years at baseline who participated in the follow-up study (third to seventh wave) at least one time.
MEASUREMENTS: Cognitive function was assessed with the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) in all study waves. Nutritional intake was assessed using a 3-day dietary record in the second wave. Cumulative data among participants with an MMSE >27 in the second wave were analyzed using a generalized estimating equation. Multivariate adjusted odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for an MMSE score ≤27 in each study wave according to a 1 standard deviation (SD) increase of each food intake at baseline were estimated, after adjusting for age, follow-up time, MMSE score at baseline, education, body mass index, annual household income, current smoking status, energy intake, and history of diseases.
RESULTS: In men, after adjusting for age, and follow-up period, MMSE score at baseline, the adjusted OR for a decline in MMSE score was 1.20 (95% CI, 1.02-1.42; p=0.032) with a 1-SD increase in cereal intake. After adjusting for education and other confounding variables, the OR for a decrease in MMSE score did not reach statistical significance for this variable. In women, multivariate adjusted OR for MMSE decline was 1.43 (95% CI, 1.15-1.77; p=0.001) with a 1-SD increase in cereal intake and 0.80 (95% CI, 0.65-0.98; p=0.034) with a 1-SD increase in milk and dairy product intake.
CONCLUSIONS: This study indicates that a 1-SD (108 g/day) decrease in cereal intake and a 1-SD (128 g/day) increase in milk and dairy product intake may have an influence of cognitive decline in community-dwelling Japanese women aged 60 years and older. Further studies are needed in order to explore the potential causal relationship.