The B vitamin folate protects against cognitive decline in older adults, suggests a new study.

The study, reported in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found that folate has an effect that goes beyond its impact on homocysteine, a blood marker of cardiovascular disease risk associated with lower cognitive test scores.

Folate supplementation can reduce blood levels of homocysteine, but the current study found that the effects of folate were independent of its impact on homocysteine, which proved to be more strongly associated with memory tests.

For the study, led by Katherine L. Tucker of Tufts University, involved a group of Boston-area men in the ongoing Normative Aging Study (NAS).

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