January 18, 2017
Can Seafood Help Prevent Alzheimer\
Wellness Tip

Can Seafood Help Prevent Alzheimer's?

by Berkeley Wellness  |  

Eating fish and other seafood may help prevent Alzheim­er’s disease in people at high risk for it, even though seafood is often contaminated with mercury, a known neurotoxin. In a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers looked at brain autopsies of 286 people (average age 90, dementia-free at the start of the study) and correlated the findings with the subjects’ seafood intake dur­ing the 4.5 years before death.

Among the 23 per­cent of subjects with a key genotype (APOE4) associated with Alzheimer’s risk, those who had eaten seafood at least once a week showed fewer signs of dementia-related brain changes than those who ate little or none; no effect was seen in those without the genotype (possibly because their risk was much lower to begin with). Reas­suringly, though mercury levels in the subjects' brains increased with seafood intake, this was not associated with dementia-related signs.

Fish oil supplements had no apparent benefits or risks, though relatively few subjects had reported taking them.

Also see Can Diet Prevent Dementia?