ENLIGHTEN is an NIH-funded, randomized controlled trial examining the effects of the dietary approaches to stop hypertension (DASH) diet and aerobic exercise on cardiovascular health and cognitive function in older adults. The study is designed to determine if exercise, diet, or a combined diet and exercise program may reduce cardiovascular risk factors and improve brain function. If participants qualify they are randomly assigned (like flipping a coin) to one of four groups: exercise, diet, exercise and diet, or health education. Each group lasts for six months.
Both before and following the six-month intervention, participants will complete measures of cognitive function (e.g. memory and concentration), as well as completing assessments of heart health and fitness at Duke Medical Center. All interventions and assessments are delivered free of charge and participants will receive up to $470 in compensation for completing all aspects of the study.