“Diet for the Mind – The Latest Science on What to Eat to Prevent Alzheimer’s and Cognitive Decline” by Dr. Martha Clare Morris

Diet for the MIND: The Latest Science on What to Eat to Prevent Alzheimer's and Cognitive Decline -- From the Creator of the MIND Diet

I began reading this book with certain prejudices. My household is omnivorous. I usually eat one restaurant meal per week and avoid fast food chains. I cook, but not the way my mother did. I use many shortcuts and also a few pre-packaged “convenience” foods.

So why read this book? I want to avoid Alzheimer’s Disease, and I’m continually adjusting my diet to manage my weight. I’m looking for good ideas! I also enjoy hearing about the science of nutrition. With so much anecdotal information swirling around the internet, this book is a helpful reference.

My personal dietician (sister) noted that the diet recommendations in this book are “hard to operationalize”, so she gave me a chart to help organize food choices for a week. Very helpful!

Dr. Morris advocates daily consumption of leafy greens, like spinach or kale. Good thing I like green smoothies! This book is NOT oriented towards weight loss.

The most useful item in the book (for me) was a formula (p 61) to determine if a product is made mostly from whole grains. You use two lines on the required product nutrition label (grams of carbohydrates and grams of fiber). If the grams of fiber is greater than ten percent of the grams of carbs, the food counts as a “whole grain” product.

I checked out some products from my kitchen. Light English muffins qualify as “whole grain”, but frozen steam-in-the-bag brown rice doesn’t! Who knew?? Since labels can be confusing, I’m glad to have this way to check on the desirability of a product.

I don’t know if I’ll use the recipes from the book. Many seem overly complicated. But I know, from past experience, if I find even one great recipe, I’ll keep the book forever! If there’s a second edition, I hope it will include a week’s worth of sample menus.

BRIEF RANT! Despite the claims made by Dr. Morris, NO ONE actually knows how to PREVENT Alzheimer’s Disease. You can only shift the odds slightly in your favor. You could be perfect (diet, exercise, mental challenges, etc.) and still fall victim to dementia. Sorry, friends. Wish I had better news.


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