Which Foods To Avoid While on MIND Diet for Better Brain Health


Some foods may keep your brain sharp and body strong, while others can actually speed up your cognitive decline. The U.S. News and World report recognized the MIND diet as the No. 2 overall diet. The MIND diet is specifically beneficial to your brain. MIND is abbreviation for Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay. It is based on both Mediterranean diet and DASH diet, but mainly focuses on foods that can enhance brain health.

Martha Clare Morris, Sc.D., of Rush University Medical Center, along with her colleagues, identified foods that are linked with cognitive decline and can increase a person’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.

They are bad for two reasons – firstly, they have higher amounts of saturated fats that can trigger oxidative stress and inflammation, and secondly, they are high in sugar. Regular consumption of sugar-laden foods can interfere with insulin signaling; thereby, negatively affecting memory and learning. Let’s learn which foods to avoid while following the MIND diet.

Foods To Avoid When on MIND Diet:

Here are the foods you must avoid or strictly limit to prevent cognitive decline:


1. Fast and Fried Foods

Both fast foods and fried foods contain saturated fats and must be limited to just one serving each week.

2. Red Meat

Red meat has more amounts of saturated fats than any other protein sources, including tofu and poultry. According to a study, accumulation of iron in the brain could lead to the development of Alzheimer’s and this could be possibly due to red meat consumption. Restrict your red meat consumption to less than 4 servings per week.

3. Margarine and Butter

Margarines are made from vegetable oils like soybean oil, which is rich in omega-6 fatty acids. Excessive consumption of omega-6 fatty acids can lead to inflammation. Butter, on the other hand, is rich in saturated fats. Make sure to not consume more than one tablespoon of butter or margarine each day.

4. Whole-Fat Cheese

Cheese is yet again laden with saturated fats. You might have heard that cheese contains the metal, aluminum, which could raise your risk of developing dementia; lately, it has been debunked that negligible quantities of aluminum from foods increase Alzheimer’s risk. Nevertheless, you should restrict your cheese consumption to less than one serving per week.

5. Sweets and Pastries

These sweet treats are usually rich in saturated fats and sugar. Sugar can make you feel hungrier; leading you to consume more food. Limit the intake of sweets and pastries to less than 5 servings per week.

Hope, you would be able to either completely avoid or limit these foods as per the recommendation while following the MIND diet. This would certainly help you in staying mentally fit and strong.