Fish Intake May Affect Brain Structure and Improve Cognitive Ability in Healthy People

Keisuke Kokubun, Kiyotaka Nemoto, Yoshinori Yamakawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


As the population ages worldwide, the prevalence of cognitive disorders including mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is increasing. MCI appears in 10–20% of adults aged 65 years and older and is generally referred to as an intermediate stage between normal cognitive aging and dementia. To develop timely prevention and early treatment strategies by identifying biological factors, we investigated the relationship between dietary consumption of fish, brain structure, and MCI in cognitively normal subjects. The brain structure was assessed using neuroimaging-derived measures including the “gray-matter brain healthcare quotient (GM-BHQ)” and “fractional-anisotropy brain healthcare quotient (FA-BHQ),” which are approved as the international standard (H.861.1) by the International Telecommunication Union Telecommunication Standardization Sector. Dietary consumption of fish was calculated using the brief self-administered diet history questionnaire (BDHQ), and MCI was assessed using the Memory Performance Index (MPI) of MCI screening method (MCI Screen). This study showed that fish intake was positively associated with both FA-BHQ and MPI, and FA-BHQ was more strongly associated with MPI than fish intake. Our findings are in line with those in previous studies, but our study further indicates that the condition of the whole brain integrity measured by the FA-BHQ may mediate the relationship between fish intake and MCI prevention in healthy people. In other words, FA-BHQ may be used to identify people at high risk of MCI to provide the appropriate intervention.

Original languageEnglish
Article number76
JournalFrontiers in Aging Neuroscience
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Mar 20
Externally publishedYes


  • MCI Screen
  • brief self-administered diet history questionnaire
  • fish intake
  • fractional-anisotropy brain healthcare quotient
  • gray-matter brain healthcare quotient
  • magnetic resonance imaging data

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ageing
  • Cognitive Neuroscience


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