News

Resveratrol may improve memory in elderly

August 27, 2014

A new study from Germany reports that regular increased intakes of the polyphenol resveratrol seem to support memory performance and glucose metabolism in older adults.

In the randomized controlled trial, 46 participants aged between 50 and 75 years performed memory tests before and after they received either 200 mg resveratrol per day of or a placebo for 26 weeks (1). The study results showed that participants who were supplemented with resveratrol had significant improvements in the retention of words over 30 minutes compared with placebo. In addition, neuroimaging data showed that resveratrol led to a significantly increased functional connectivity of the hippocampus. Moreover, resveratrol supplementation was associated with decreased levels of glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) – a marker of long-term presence of excess glucose in the blood.

The researchers commented that increased resveratrol intakes may be a new strategy to maintain brain health during aging. While earlier research has linked resveratrol intakes to improved blood flow in the brain (2), the new results indicate that the polyphenol may be able to modulate brain function. Resveratrol, found in grapes and red wine has been intensively investigated for potential cardiovascular benefits.

References

  1. Witte A. V. et al. Effects of resveratrol on memory performance, hippocampal functional connectivity, and glucose metabolism in healthy older adults. Journal of Neuroscience. 2014; 34(23):7862–7870.
  2. Kennedy D. O. et al. Effects of resveratrol on cerebral blood flow variables and cognitive performance in humans: a double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover investigation. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010; 91(6):1590–1597.