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AAN: Adherence to DASH Diet May Reduce Risk of Depression

For older adults, positive correlation identified for the Western diet with depression over time

TUESDAY, Feb. 27, 2018 (HealthDay News) — Adherence to the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet is associated with reduced risk of depression among older adults, according to a study scheduled for presentation at the upcoming annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology, to be held from April 21 to 27 in Los Angeles.

Laurel Cherian, Ph.D., from the Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, and colleagues assessed 964 participants (mean age, 81.32 years) from an observational prospective cohort study annually for an average of 6.53 years. Using a validated food frequency questionnaire, diet scores were computed for the DASH diet, Mediterranean diet, Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay diet, prudent, and Western diets.

The researchers found that, compared with participants in the first tertile of the DASH diet, those in the second and third tertiles had lower rates of depression over time (β = −0.0786 and −0.1109, respectively). Conversely, there was a positive correlation for the Western diet with depression over time (β = 0.0195).

“Future studies are now needed to confirm these results and to determine the best nutritional components of the DASH diet to prevent depression later in life and to best help people keep their brains healthy,” Cherian said in a statement.

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