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Last Updated: 04/22/2014 13:55 PST

An All-Natural Cure for Memory Loss – In a Pill?

It’s a common sign of old age: Memory loss. Yet after decades of research, scientists still don’t know how to reverse memory loss for good.

But now scientists may have stumbled upon a cure–in the form of a single, antioxidant-packed supplement.

Reporting from the University of South Florida, a new study reveals that a pill containing green tea, vitamin D3, amino acids, and berry extracts helped improve the cognitive function of older adults even better than ginseng.

“Interventions to improve the cognitive health of older adults are of critical importance,” say researchers, whose study was published in the journal Rejuvenation Research. “In the current study, we conducted a double-blind placebo controlled clinical trial using a pill-based nutraceutical that contained a proprietary formulation of blueberry, carnosine, green tea, Vitamin D3 and Biovin to evaluate the impact on changes in multiple domains of cognitive functioning.”

In designing this pill, they also chose their ingredients carefully–only choosing those which contained the most useful antioxidants. Choosing these antioxidants was crucial for their study design, as previous evidence showed antioxidants may have a preventative effect against dementia, a type of memory loss disease.

Once the supplement was created, researchers then recruited people for their study. In this case, they enlisted the help of 52 participants between the ages of 65 and 85–an age group typically associated with age-related memory loss. Before giving them the supplement, however, they administered a cognitive memory test to see how their cognitive ability currently performed.

“One hundred and five cognitively intact adults aged 65 to 85 years of age were randomized to receive NT-020 [name of supplement] or a placebo,” say researchers. “Participants were tested with a battery of cognitive performance tests that were classified into six broad domains: episodic memory, processing speed, verbal ability, working memory, executive functioning and complex speed at baseline and two months later.”

After finishing the test, researchers then split the participants into two groups: A group receiving the antioxidant supplement and a group receiving placebo. Then, over the course of 2 months, they continued their regimen, and after the time elapsed, they tested their cognitive ability once more.

For those who took placebo, no discernible change in cognitive ability occurred. But for those who took a daily antioxidant pill, their cognitive ability significantly improved, suggesting this pill may have improved their memory.

“Overall, the results of the current study were promising and suggest the potential for interventions like these to improve the cognitive health of older adults,” say researchers. “Processing speed is most often affected early on in the course of cognitive aging. Successful performance in processing tasks often underlies more complex cognitive outcomes, such as memory and verbal ability.”

In conclusion, experts now believe there may be potential in using concentrated antioxidants–such as the ones in this pill–to reduce memory loss in older adults, though further testing is needed.

What You Should Do

If memory loss is a concern for you–or perhaps it’s already beginning–consider adding a dose of antioxidants to your daily diet for a quick mind boost. But make sure you’re doing it with other activities that stimulate brain activity, such as brain games and exercising regularly.



 


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