More than the sum of its parts? Nutrition in Alzheimer's disease

Nutrition. 2010 Jul-Aug;26(7-8):694-700. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2009.11.009. Epub 2010 Apr 8.


The aim of this article is to emphasize the importance of malnutrition and micronutrient deficiencies in Alzheimer's disease and discuss recent supplementation trials. Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a devastating neurodegenerative disease with increasing socio-economic impact. It leads to cognitive decline over the years, finally resulting in brain atrophy and gradually destroying a person's ability to learn, reason, make judgments, and communicate. Most of the cases are sporadic and risk factors evolve. There is evidence that malnutrition, oxidative stress, and homocysteine-related vitamins play a role in the pathogenesis of AD. A plethora of epidemiologic studies have explored the associations between nutrients and AD. In addition, more and more data from recent trials are evolving to analyze the impact of micronutrient supplementation in AD and incipient AD concerning B vitamin status and antioxidants. Available data do not support definitive conclusions regarding specific recommendations on micronutrient supplementation for the prevention or treatment of AD; however, more data from prospective trials are needed. Approaches with multiple nutritional components might be promising.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alzheimer Disease / etiology*
  • Alzheimer Disease / prevention & control*
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use*
  • Deficiency Diseases / complications*
  • Humans
  • Micronutrients / deficiency*
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Vitamin B Complex / therapeutic use*


  • Antioxidants
  • Micronutrients
  • Vitamin B Complex