Topic of the Month
1 November 2013
In addition to normal, age-related deterioration in brain function, the risk of a pathological decline in mental and intellectual abilities increases with age. Typical of such diseases – collectively called dementia, although there are several sub-forms – is deterioration in memory capacity, cognitive performance, language and practical skills. As a consequence, those affected can no longer perform everyday tasks. The most common forms of dementia are Alzheimer’s disease, a form in which harmful proteins (plaques) accumulate in the nerve cells of the brain, and vascular dementia, characterized by narrowing of the blood vessels due to atherosclerosis. Since dementia cannot at present be cured, early recognition and prophylaxis are extremely important. In addition to regular physical exercise and mental activity, a balanced and micronutrient-rich diet can help prevent the onset and combat the progression of dementia.