Olive Oil May Reduce Risk of Dying With Dementia

Need another reason to reach for olive oil when you cook? A new study suggests that having just a little bit each day might help reduce your chances of dying with dementia.

Scientists examined data collected over almost three decades on about 93,000 middle-aged adults. At the start of the study, participants were 56 years old on average and had no history of cardiovascular disease, a major risk factor for dementia.

Every four years, participants completed dietary questionnaires detailing what foods they typically ate and indicating how often they consumed olive oil: no more than once a month; up to 4.5 grams (g), or 1 teaspoon (tsp) daily; between 4.5 and 7 g (1.5 tsp) daily; or more than 7 g daily.

Compared with people who rarely if ever consumed olive oil, those who got at least 7 g a day were 28 percent less likely to die of dementia-related causes by the end of the study, according to results published in JAMA Network Open.

The study also found that replacing 1 daily tsp of margarine or mayonnaise with olive oil was associated with up to a 14 percent lower risk of dying from dementia-related causes.

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