Background: Today, dementia affects 35 million people worldwide, twothirds of whom live in low and middle income countries (LMIC). Lebanon, an LMIC in the Middle East, is also witnessing a nutritional transition with fat, meat, and sugar consumption rising and replacing the healthy Mediterranean diet rich in fish and vegetables(2), resulting in an escalation of obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease(2), which are established risk factors for dementia. The reduction of fish consumption in the diet per se, particularly oily fish rich in omega 3 fatty acids, further limits the potential protective effect on dementia(3-4). Given the role of diet modification in dementia prevention, understanding the link between diet and dementia in Lebanon can be an important dementia prevention intervention for Lebanon and for the Middle East. Methods: 510 participants > 65 years old residing in Beirut and Mount Lebanon governorates were included in a cross-sectional survey. Data collection by trained interviewers took place in randomly selected clusters from the capital Beirut and Mount Lebanon area. The 10/66 Dementia Research Group diagnostic assessment for dementia and risk factor questionnaires were administered to the participants and their caregivers. Results: Preliminary analysis was carried on 303 participants, 174 females (57.4%) and 129 males (42.6%). The mean age was 72.28 years (SD 7.03). 24 participants were diagnosed with dementia (8%). There was a high prevalence of overweight (54.4%) and obesity (27.7%) among the study population. Neither fish nor meat consumption in this sample was related to dementia prevalence (OR: 0.83; 95%CI: 0.30, 2.33; and OR: 1.48; CI: 0.33,6.56, respectively). Conclusions: Preliminary findings do not support the protective effect of fish consumption, but more definitive conclusions can be made once the entire sample of 510 randomly selected individuals are analyzed. Still, the trends of a lower odds of dementia among older people who consumed fish, and a higher odds of dementia among meat consumers is consistent with the results of the large 10/66 study carried out in five LMIC. The latter finding, combined with the nutritional transitions observed in Lebanon and the Arab region and the mounting evidence of the role of diet on dementia, warrants further investigation on a larger national and regional scale. (Table presented) .
Khoury, R., Chaaya, M., Waldemar, G., El Asmar, K., Ghandour, L., Karam, G., … Phung, K. (2014). P4-343: THE ASSOCIATION BETWEEN FISH AND MEAT CONSUMPTION AND DEMENTIA PREVALENCE IN LEBANON. Alzheimer’s & Dementia, 10, P913–P914. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jalz.2014.07.113