A new study has found a link between college education and eating fish, which suggests that eating fish will actually keep your brain healthier and younger.
Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences discovered that not only does eating fish help the brain, but the way fish is cooked before consumption can also play a big role in how it helps out a person’s brain. The best way to eat fish, the researchers have said, is if it has been broiled or baked.
“Our study shows that people who ate a diet that included baked or broiled, but not fried, fish have larger brain volumes in regions associated with memory and cognition,” said James T. Becker, Ph.D., professor of psychiatry at Pitt School of Medicine.
Baked and broiled fish have higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids, which are thought to significantly improve brain health, especially when it comes to cognitive issues. Omega-3s are believed to help decrease the risk of getting dementia while keeping the brain younger.
For the study, the researchers looked at the dietary information from 260 people. They also had the people undergo brain scans, and ultimately found that people who ate fish that wasn’t fried at least once a week were more likely to go to college.
However, the researchers have noted that eating fish is only one lifestyle change that can result in a sharper mind. Not smoking and eating healthier all around will also better the mind.
“A confluence of lifestyle factors likely are responsible for better brain health, and this reserve might prevent or delay cognitive problems that can develop later in life,” said Becker.
“We did not find a relationship between Omega-3 levels and these brain changes, which surprised us a little. It led us to conclude that we were tapping into a more general set of lifestyle factors that were affecting brain health of which diet is just one part.”
The study was published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.