Fat Choices Also Affect Your Brain

That bacon double cheeseburger might be as bad for your brain as it is for your heart. New findings on 6,183 women over age 65 participating in the Women’s Health Study show that saturated fat may contribute to decline in cognition and memory, while healthy monounsaturated fat could actually protect your brain. “When looking at changes in cognitive function, what we found is that the total amount of fat intake did not really matter, but the type of fat did,” researchers said. Participants completed food questionnaires at the start of the study and were tested for overall cognitive function and verbal memory, then retested for mental abilities twice more over 4 years. Women who ate the most saturated fat had worse scores than those consuming the least and were more likely to decline over time. Those consuming the most monounsaturated fat, like that in olive oil, scored higher initially and were at lower risk of mental decline. – Annals of Neurology