A specific class of antioxidants found in fruit and vegetable juice could stave off Alzheimer's disease, say scientists.
Non-vitamin antioxidants - polyphenols - are abundant in the skin and peels of fruits and vegetables. They are also present in teas and wines.
Lab trials have earlier shown that polyphenols can have a potent effect on health, with the potential to significantly delay the onset of serious cognitive impairment.
Qi Dai and colleagues at the Vanderbilt University, Tennessee, studied 1,836 dementia-free subjects based in Seattle. They looked into their intake of fruit and vegetable juice over a 10-year period while monitoring cognitive function every two years, reported science portal Science a GoGo.
The team found that people who drank over three serves of fruit or vegetable juice a week reduced the risk of Alzheimer's by 76 percent compared to those who drank less than one.
The team also found that the beneficial effects were most pronounced in subjects who carried a genetic marker associated with Alzheimer's.
The researchers said the next stage was to test blood samples to discover whether elevated levels of polyphenols are directly linked to a reduced risk of Alzheimer's, and discover which types of juice are most effective in achieving this outcome.