Scientists seem to have one significant new finding in the battle against brain diseases. Studies suggest that eating turmeric, found in curcumin, helps to boost the memory and improves the mood.
Scientists have already said turmeric was useful to reduce inflammation and that it had antioxidant properties. However, this discovery about turmeric is astonishing. Now they think that the regular consumption of curcumin in India could explain why they have low rates of Alzheimer’s. However, scientists still can’t tell why curcumin is good for the brain.
“Exactly how curcumin exerts its effects is not certain, but it may be due to its ability to reduce brain inflammation, which has been linked to both Alzheimer’s disease and major depression,” said Gary Small, from the University of California, Los Angeles in the US.
Regular consumption of curcumin leads to better cognitive performance
The study was published in the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. It involved the participation of 40 adults with ages ranging from 50 and 90 years. All of them had mild memory complaints.
The 40 participants received standardized cognitive assessments at the start of the study and six-month intervals. Their levels of curcumin in blood were checked at the beginning of the study and after 18 months. They were randomly assigned to receive a placebo or 90 milligrams of curcumin twice a day for the whole period of study.
The study showed that the people who took curcumin experienced improvements in their cognitive performance including better memory and attention if compared to the subjects that didn’t take curcumin. The first group improved by 28 percent over the 18 months.
They also had a better mood and their PET scans – or positron emission tomography – showed significantly less amyloid and tau signals in the amygdala and hypothalamus than the ones taking placebos. The amygdala and hypothalamus are parts of the brain that control many memory and emotional functions. However, some of the patients felt abdominal pain while the study lasted.
It is not clear how curcumin helps the brain
It is not clear how curcumin leads to better cognitive conditions. The truth is that consuming curcumin on a regular basis could have benefits, in the long run, making people less likely to suffer dementia and depression.
“These results suggest that taking this relatively safe form of curcumin could provide meaningful cognitive benefits over the years,” said Small.
Source: Deccan Chronicle