Research indicates a close link between menopause and dementia. You are more than just a pretty face! Most medical research in women’s health revolves around cosmetics, reproductive fitness and breast cancer. Little research is dedicated to women’s brain health, according to Lisa Mosconi, Ph.D, the associate director of the Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic at Weill Cornell Medical College. There are studies that show a relationship between menopause and dementia. The link being that the decrease in estrogen production in the woman’s brain as she goes into menopause. Estrogen protects the female brain from aging and may help prevent the build up of plaques in the brain typically found in Alzheimer’s patients. Hormone therapy is one current way of increasing estrogen levels and to minimize menopause symptoms. Dr. Mosconi also promotes that a healthy, balanced, anthocyanin-rich diet can boost up estrogen production and might prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s. “Many foods naturally boost estrogen production, including soy, flax seeds, chickpeas, garlic and fruit like apricots. Women in particular also need antioxidant nutrients like vitamin C and vitamin E, found in berries, citrus fruits, almonds, raw cacao, Brazil nuts and many leafy green vegetables.” Dr. Mosconi urges for more funding for medical research on aging female brain and of a thorough assessment of women’s health demands as they age. The neuroscientist highlights the significance of understanding the function of estrogen in protecting the female brain and its possible role in preventing Alzheimer’s in women specifically. References: The Menopause-Alzheimer’s Connection in The New York Times (published on April 18, 2018).