In a recent study published in Nutrients, the cognitive benefits of blueberries among older adults was examined.
In their findings, researchers from the University of Cincinnati studied the high level of micronutrients and antioxidants known as anthocyanins derived from blueberries.
The effects of anthocyanins in humans is said to be associated with a reduction of inflammation, improvement in metabolic function, and enhancement in energy production within cells.
Researchers studied 33 patients between the ages of 50 and 65 with a prediabetic state and with mild cognitive decline due to aging.
Half of the participants were instructed to consume about one-half cup of blueberries, while the rest were given a placebo. The cognitive abilities of the participants were then studied through a series of tests.
“Preliminary studies indicate that blueberry supplementation can improve cognitive performance and influence metabolism and brain function and therefore may have a role in early intervention to prevent neurodegeneration,” according to the study’s authors.
“We found that daily blueberry powder supplementation equivalent to 0.5 c whole fruit for 12 weeks improved performance on a lexical access task and reduced interference of extraneous information in memory.”
“These cognitive performance enhancements can be understood as reflecting improved executive control among the blueberry-treated participants. The findings are a demonstration that blueberry supplementation can produce measurable cognitive benefit in the context of aging and insulin resistance,” the authors concluded.