Hydroxytyrosol fights cognitive declines

Bioactive Ingredients Food Group

The Bioactive Ingredients Food Group published the first evidence that hydroxytyrosol and – therefore – consumption of high-quality olive oil might prevent cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease via restoration of proper cerebral insulin signaling. Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is an irreversible neurodegenerative disorder, characterized by progressive memory deficit and neuronal loss, whose prevalence is increasing due to population aging.

Recent prospective studies showed that the Mediterranean diet is associated with lower incidence of AD and can improve cognition. In this study, we demonstrate that HT protects Aβ(25- 35)-treated astrocytes by improving insulin sensitivity.

These data provide some mechanistic insight on the observed inverse association between Mediterranean diet score (and olive oil consumption) and prevalence of cognitive impairment. Future, ad-hoc human studies will eventually verify whether the use of HT as nutritional supplement could reduce IR associated with AD and, in turn, improve AD symptoms and clinical manifestations.


MC Crespo et al., Biofactors. 2017 Mar 20. doi: 10.1002/biof.1356. [Epub ahead of print]