High-Calorie Diet Could Lead to Memory Loss, Study Suggests

Comstock/Thinkstock(ROCHESTER, Minn.) -- Researchers suggest there may be a link between memory loss and a high-calorie diet.

Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) can often be an early sign of dementia, and experts say it may help to determine who will eventually develop more serious conditions such as Alzheimer's disease.

Results from a study conducted by the Mayo Clinic show that high calorie intake (2,142.5 to 6,000 calories a day) increased the incidences of MCI for study participants.  At the beginning of the study following the diets of 1,233 people aged between 70 and 89, none of the participants had dementia, and only 163 had been diagnosed with MCI.  For those participants who consumed a high-calorie diet, the incidence of MCI had more than doubled.

Though the study's findings have been presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology, they have not been published in a peer-reviewed medical journal.  The study authors say it cannot be stated with certainty that a high-calorie diet is the direct cause of MCI or dementia.  

Still, the study authors say that adopting an overall healthy lifestyle that includes a healthy diet and regular exercise would be beneficial to protecting against dementia and other chronic diseases.
 
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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