People may decrease their Alzheimer’s disease risk by munching out on salad dressing, nuts, fish, poultry and certain fruits and vegetables and by limiting high-fat dairy products, red meat and butter, according to a study published in Archives of Neurology, a publication from the Journal of the American Medical Association.

For the study, Columbia University Medical Center researchers studied diet and dementia development in 2,148 New York residents, ages 65 and older, without symptoms of mental decline. Scientists tested them for signs of dementia every 1.5 years, for an average of four years, and noted their diets.

During the follow-up, researchers found that 253 individuals developed Alzheimer’s disease.

Scientists noted that one eating regimen showed a significant link with a lowered risk of the disease: a combination diet rich in high amounts of fruits and veggies (especially cruciferous and dark, green leafy vegetables), salad dressing, nuts, fish and poultry.

Researchers believed that the diet reduced the risk of Alzheimer’s because it provides a powerful mix of nutrients (vitamin B-12, vitamin E, folate and fatty acids) to help the body fight mental decline on several fronts.

“Our findings provide support for further exploration of food combination-based dietary behavior for the prevention of this important public health problem,” researchers concluded.

Read why Alzheimer’s disproportionately affects blacks here.