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Further evidence of benefits of fish

31st January 2006

The health benefits of eating fish have been supported once again with the release of a new study into dementia.

Scientists from Finland have claimed that consuming large amounts of oily fish can reduce the risk of developing dementia by almost 50 per cent.

They say that the unsaturated fats contained within the fish are needed and used by the brain to prolong functions and that increasing daily intake of such fats can help to protect against mental decline.

"We discovered that unsaturated fats such as olive oil and fish, lower the risk of dementia by 40 to 50 per cent," explained Miia Kivipelto, a dementia scientist at the Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm.

Ms Kivipelto warned that many elderly people are not receiving adequate levels of unsaturated fat and that they would benefit from increased consumption, in both brain and heart health.

The study looked at the lifestyles and eating habits of 1,500 Finnish people over 20 years as part of a research project into dementia and obesity and adds support to previous claims over the advantages of eating a Mediterranean style diet.