Dementia is a syndrome associated with an ongoing decline of brain functioning. 

There are four main types and they have different early symptoms – some types develop more slowly than others. 

While there is no cure for dementia right now, if it’s diagnosed in the early stages, there are ways you can slow it down and maintain mental function. 

Bupa outlines the different early symptoms of each type of dementia. 

Alzheimer’s disease 

The healthcare group says Alzheimer’s disease tends to come on very slowly. In the early stages, people begin to find it difficult to learn new things. Getting confused about what day or time it is can be another early sign. 

Vascular dementia 

Symptoms of this type of dementia can come on quickly, typically after a stroke, but the exact symptoms will depend on which part of the brains as affected by a lack of blood supply. 

Emotional difficulties are often the first signs. Memory loss or confusion often follows. 

Dementia with Lewy bodies 

There can be very specific early symptoms with this type of dementia. Detailed visual hallucinations which involve seeing things that aren’t there can be an early sign. As the dementia develops, more typical signs of the disease may begin to show. 

Frontotemporal dementia 

There are three stand out symptoms of this dementia: 

  • Become less inhibited and start behaving oddly and inappropriately 
  • Speak more hesitantly and have difficulty understanding long sentences 
  • Begin to forget words, what things are called or what they’re used for

There is no cure for dementia right now, but if it is diagnosed in the early stages, there are ways you can slow it down and maintain mental function. 

One of these ways is the MIND diet – a diet developed specifically to help improve brain function and reduce dementia which is a combination of the Mediterranean diet and the blood pressure-lowering DASH diet. 

There are no set guidelines for how to follow the MIND diet other than to eat more of the 10 foods the diet encourages you to eat. 

These include green, leafy vegetables, berries, nuts, fish, beans , poultry and even wine. 

But five foods, which contain saturated fats and trans fats, should be limited, as studies in the past have found trans fats are associated with Alzheimer’s disease. 

What to eat on the MIND diet

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