Neurodegenerative disorders are a widespread cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide, characterized by neuroinflammation, oxidative stress and neuronal depletion. The broad-spectrum neuroprotective activity of the Mediterranean diet is widely documented, but it is not yet known whether its nutritional and caloric balance can induce a modulation of the endocannabinoid system. In recent decades, many studies have shown how endocannabinoid tone enhancement may be a promising new therapeutic strategy to counteract the main hallmarks of neurodegeneration. From a phylogenetic point of view, the human co-evolution between the endocannabinoid system and dietary habits could play a key role in the pro-homeostatic activity of the Mediterranean lifestyle: this adaptive balance among our ancestors has been compromised by the modern Western diet, resulting in a “clinical endocannabinoid deficiency syndrome”. This review aims to evaluate the evidence accumulated in the literature on the neuroprotective, immunomodulatory and antioxidant properties of the Mediterranean diet related to the modulation of the endocannabinoid system, suggesting new prospects for research and clinical interventions against neurodegenerative diseases in light of a nutraceutical paradigm.
Authors: Federica Armeli, Alessio Bonucci, Elisa Maggi, Alessandro Pinto andRita Businaro
Source: Armeli, F.; Bonucci, A.; Maggi, E.; Pinto, A.; Businaro, R. Mediterranean Diet and Neurodegenerative Diseases: The Neglected Role of Nutrition in the Modulation of the Endocannabinoid System. Biomolecules 2021, 11, 790. https://doi.org/10.3390/biom11060790
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