Our lifespan has gotten longer, but what Dr. Estep calls the "mindspan" has not. He says that can change depending on what we put on our plates.
The study wants us to limit our intake of red meat, but not for the reasons we've previously been told. Rather than concern over cholesterol, Dr. Estep believes an excess of iron could contribute to the deterioration of brain function.
PHOTOS: Notable people with Alzheimer's
Notable people with Alzheimer's
Notable people with Alzheimer's
This file photo dated 04 November, 1991 shows US President Ronald Reagan giving a speech at the dedication of the library bearing his name in Simi Valley, California. He was US president from 1981 to 1989 and retreated from public life after it was revealed he was suffering from Alzheimer's disease. (Photo by J. David Ake, AFP/Getty Images)
Glenn Campbell performs during The Goodbye Tour at the Ryman Auditorium on January 3, 2012 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Ed Rode/Getty Images)
Picture dated 18 May 1991 of US actor Charles Bronson during the 44th Cannes film festival, southern France. Bronson died 30 August 2003 in Los Angeles of complications from pneumonia. (Photo by Gerard Julien, AFP/Getty Images)
392653 01: Actor Burgess Meredith performs in the television show 'The Twilight Zone.' (Photo Courtesy of Sci Fi Channel/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - AUGUST 31: Actor James Doohan recieves his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame August 31, 2004 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Mark Mainz/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 17: Malcolm Young of AC/DC performs on stage at Wembley Arena on January 17th, 1986 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Peter Still/Redferns)
NORMAN ROCKWELL'S AMERICA -- Pictured: Artist Norman Rockwell -- (Photo by: Gary Null/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
Publicity close up of Hollywood actress Rita Hayworth wearing ornately decorated gloves and holding a cigarette in a cigarette holder.
NEW YORK CITY - FEBRUARY 29: Aaron Copeland attends 10th Annual Grammy Awards on February 29, 1968 at the New York Hilton Hotel in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage) (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
Actor Peter Falk poses as he arrives for the premiere of his new film
"Lakeboat" September 24, 2001 in Los Angeles. The film is an adaptation
of David Mamet's comic play about a grad student who takes a summer job
on a Great Lakes freighter and sees life through the eyes of his
low-brow crew members. The film opens in limited release in Los Angeles
September 28. REUTERS/Rose Prouser
Estelle Getty (Photo by Jim Smeal/WireImage)
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People in countries with the longest "mindspans" like Japan, France, and Italy, have diets high in refined carbohydrates that Americans have been told to avoid.
Ingredients like white rice and pasta aren't the foods to create 6-pack abs, but they may protect your brain.
Fermented foods, like pickles and red wine are also thought to play a significant role in preventing Alzheimer's and dementia.
While this study doesn't give permission to skip the vegetables, it's nice to know we don't have to cut out happy hour.