Drinking tart juice may improve the cognitive functioning in older adults, says a latest study. Montmorency tart cherry juice has been widely used for gout treatment, exercise recovery and managing sleep deprivation. The latest study says that drinking tart cherry juice may do wonders for brain functioning in elderly. The study published in the journal of 'Food & Function' has found that daily intake of montmorency tart cherry juice improves memory scores among adults, aged 65 to 73 years.
"Cognitive function is a key determinant of independence and quality of life among older adults,"said Sheau Ching Chai, lead author of the study.
"The potential beneficial effects of tart cherries may be related to the bioactive compounds they possess, which include polyphenols, anthocyanins, and melanin," said Chai.
"They may also be related to tart cherry's potential blood-pressure-lowering effects, outlined in a previous study we conducted in the same population, as blood pressure can influence the blood flow to the brain," added Chai.
For the randomised controlled trial, researchers assigned 34 participants the task to consume either 16 ounces (480 mL) of montmorency tart cherry juice or the same amount of a placebo drink, half in the morning and a half in the evening, every day for 12 weeks.
The participants in the study were generally healthy and were not taking any medications that could affect brain function. They were also asked to maintain their regular diet and physical activity levels for the duration of the study.
The researchers analysed the cognitive function and subjective memory scores via a series of questionnaires and tests. They analysed the scores before and after the randomised 12-week trial.
After 12 weeks, those drinking montmorency tart cherry juice exhibited improved scores in both cognitive function and subjective memory.The tart cherry group exhibited a five per cent increase in satisfaction with their ability to remember things, a four per cent reduction in movement time (a measurement of speed of response to visual stimuli) and a 23 per cent reduction in errors made during an episodic visual memory task (which assesses visual memory and new learning) compared to placebo.
Researchers also revealed that this group exhibited a three per cent improvement in visual sustained attention (which measures visual information processing) and an 18 per cent reduction in errors made during a spatial working memory task (which assesses memory and strategy use) compared to baseline values.