The Connection Between Malnutrition and Cognitive Decline in Older Adults

Publish Date: 2015
Author(s): Carolyn Alish, PhD, RD

Abstract:

Among older adults, malnutrition is associated with a multitude of geriatric syndromes, including cognitive deficit, suggesting a relationship between nutrition and cognitive function. While some cognitive decline is an expected part of the aging process, more progressive and serious forms of cognitive impairment can occur and can affect the quality of life of patients and families and strain health care resources. Malnutrition or risk for malnutrition is prevalent among older adults. There are several studies showing that nutritional status, specifically the presence of or the risk for malnutrition is associated with impaired cognition in aging adults in a variety of settings ranging from hospital to living in the community.
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