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Lower omega-3 fatty acid intake and status are associated with poorer cognitive function in older age: A comparison of individuals with and without cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES

Various strands of evidence suggest that low intake of omega-3 fatty acids increases risk of cognitive decline and dementia. The present study investigated differences in dietary intake and blood plasma content of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA; 20:5n-3) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA; 22:6n-3) in individuals with cognitive impairment no dementia (CIND), individuals with Alzheimer's disease (AD), and healthy volunteers (HV).

METHODS

A total of 135 individuals aged between 55 and 91 years (19 AD, 55 CIND, and 61 HV) were assessed predominantly within a hospital setting.

RESULTS

Compared with age and sex-matched HV, individuals with AD or CIND performed poorly on a majority of tests of cognitive function. Impairment was greatest for delayed and verbal recognition memory. CIND individuals were less impaired than AD individuals. Omega-3 intake and the percentage of EPA and DHA in plasma phosphatidylcholine (PC) showed a similar pattern (AD < HV, with intermediate scores for CIND). Across the whole sample, and after controlling for age, years of education, level of socio-economic deprivation, and gender, omega-3 intake, plasma PC DHA, and plasma PC EPA were all significant positive predictors of memory functioning.

DISCUSSION

These results are consistent with the possibility that omega-3 fatty acid nutrition has an impact on cognitive decline, but could equally be explained by dietary changes that occurred after onset of cognitive decline. It is also possible that the results could be explained by unknown confounding factors.

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  • Authors

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    Source

    Nutritional neuroscience 15:6 2012 Nov pg 271-7

    MeSH

    Aged
    Aged, 80 and over
    Alzheimer Disease
    Cognition
    Cognition Disorders
    Diet
    Dietary Supplements
    Fatty Acids, Omega-3
    Female
    Humans
    Linear Models
    Male
    Middle Aged
    Socioeconomic Factors

    Pub Type(s)

    Comparative Study
    Journal Article
    Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

    Language

    eng

    PubMed ID

    22824373

    Citation

    Phillips, Michelle A., et al. "Lower Omega-3 Fatty Acid Intake and Status Are Associated With Poorer Cognitive Function in Older Age: a Comparison of Individuals With and Without Cognitive Impairment and Alzheimer's Disease." Nutritional Neuroscience, vol. 15, no. 6, 2012, pp. 271-7.
    Phillips MA, Childs CE, Calder PC, et al. Lower omega-3 fatty acid intake and status are associated with poorer cognitive function in older age: A comparison of individuals with and without cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease. Nutr Neurosci. 2012;15(6):271-7.
    Phillips, M. A., Childs, C. E., Calder, P. C., & Rogers, P. J. (2012). Lower omega-3 fatty acid intake and status are associated with poorer cognitive function in older age: A comparison of individuals with and without cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease. Nutritional Neuroscience, 15(6), pp. 271-7. doi:10.1179/1476830512Y.0000000026.
    Phillips MA, et al. Lower Omega-3 Fatty Acid Intake and Status Are Associated With Poorer Cognitive Function in Older Age: a Comparison of Individuals With and Without Cognitive Impairment and Alzheimer's Disease. Nutr Neurosci. 2012;15(6):271-7. PubMed PMID: 22824373.
    * Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
    TY - JOUR T1 - Lower omega-3 fatty acid intake and status are associated with poorer cognitive function in older age: A comparison of individuals with and without cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease. AU - Phillips,Michelle A, AU - Childs,Caroline E, AU - Calder,Philip C, AU - Rogers,Peter J, PY - 2012/7/25/entrez PY - 2012/7/25/pubmed PY - 2016/6/24/medline KW - Alzheimer's disease (AD) KW - Cognitive disorders KW - Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) KW - Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) KW - Fatty acids SP - 271 EP - 7 JF - Nutritional neuroscience JO - Nutr Neurosci VL - 15 IS - 6 N2 - OBJECTIVES: Various strands of evidence suggest that low intake of omega-3 fatty acids increases risk of cognitive decline and dementia. The present study investigated differences in dietary intake and blood plasma content of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA; 20:5n-3) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA; 22:6n-3) in individuals with cognitive impairment no dementia (CIND), individuals with Alzheimer's disease (AD), and healthy volunteers (HV). METHODS: A total of 135 individuals aged between 55 and 91 years (19 AD, 55 CIND, and 61 HV) were assessed predominantly within a hospital setting. RESULTS: Compared with age and sex-matched HV, individuals with AD or CIND performed poorly on a majority of tests of cognitive function. Impairment was greatest for delayed and verbal recognition memory. CIND individuals were less impaired than AD individuals. Omega-3 intake and the percentage of EPA and DHA in plasma phosphatidylcholine (PC) showed a similar pattern (AD < HV, with intermediate scores for CIND). Across the whole sample, and after controlling for age, years of education, level of socio-economic deprivation, and gender, omega-3 intake, plasma PC DHA, and plasma PC EPA were all significant positive predictors of memory functioning. DISCUSSION: These results are consistent with the possibility that omega-3 fatty acid nutrition has an impact on cognitive decline, but could equally be explained by dietary changes that occurred after onset of cognitive decline. It is also possible that the results could be explained by unknown confounding factors. SN - 1476-8305 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/22824373/Lower_omega_3_fatty_acid_intake_and_status_are_associated_with_poorer_cognitive_function_in_older_age:_A_comparison_of_individuals_with_and_without_cognitive_impairment_and_Alzheimer's_disease_ L2 - http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1179/1476830512Y.0000000026 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -