In recent years, the possibility of favorably influencing the cognitive trajectory through promotion of lifestyle modifications has been increasingly investigated. In particular, the relationship between nutritional habits and cognitive health has attracted special attention. The present review is designed to retrieve and discuss recent evidence (published over the last 3 years) coming from randomized controlled trials (RCTs) investigating the efficacy of nutritional interventions aimed at improving cognitive functioning and/or preventing cognitive decline in non-demented older individuals. A systematic review of literature was conducted, leading to the identification of 11 studies of interest. Overall, most of the nutritional interventions tested by the selected RCTs were found to produce statistically significant cognitive benefits (defined as improved neuropsychological test scores). Nevertheless, the clinical meaningfulness of such findings was not adequately discussed and appears controversial. In parallel, only 2 studies investigated between-group differences concerning incident dementia and mild cognitive impairment cases, reporting conflicting results. Results of the present review suggest that several dietary patterns and nutritional components may constitute promising strategies in postponing, slowing, and preventing cognitive decline. However, supporting evidence is overall weak and further studies are needed.
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