A Prospective Association of Nut Consumption with Cognitive Function in Chinese Adults Aged 55+ _ China Health and Nutrition Survey



We aimed to investigate the association of nut intake with cognitive function in Chinese adults aged 55 and over.


This was a prospective open cohort study with repeated measurements of diet and cognition scores.


4822 adults aged 55 and over participating in the China Health Nutrition Survey during 1991–2006.


Global cognitive function measured repeatedly in 1997, 2001, 2004, and 2006 using a subset of modified Telephone Interview for Cognitive Status; poor cognitive function was defined as cognition score<7. Nut consumption was collected using 3-day 24 recall method in 1991, 1993, and at surveys of cognition assessment.

Statistical analyses performed

Multilevel mixed effect linear regression and logistic regression analysis were conducted to assess the association with cognitive function.


The unadjusted cognitive score decreased by 0.29 (95% CI 0.22–0.28) with one-year aging during 1997–2006. Nut intake of more than 10g/d was associated with higher cognition score by 0.63 points (95% CI 0.15–1.12) or 40% less likely to have poor cognitive function (OR 0.60, 95% CI 0.43–0.84) after adjusted for demographic, lifestyle behavioural, BMI, and energy intake.


Nut consumption was inversely associated with cognition decline.

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Correspondence to Ming Li.

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Li, M., Shi, Z. A Prospective Association of Nut Consumption with Cognitive Function in Chinese Adults Aged 55+ _ China Health and Nutrition Survey. J Nutr Health Aging 23, 211–216 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12603-018-1122-5

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Key words

  • Nut consumption
  • cognition function
  • prospective association
  • China Nutrition and Health Survey