Drinking polyphenol-rich Concord grape juice may improve memory in older adults, finds a new study.
The study, led by Robert Krikorian, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, included 12 adults with early memory decline.
During the course of the 12-week research, participants drank a total of 15 to 21 ounces, depending on body weight, of either Concord grape juice or placebo daily, divided among meals.
The beverages were equal in calorie and sugar content but only the Concord grape juice contained natural polyphenolic compounds, which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
The researchers noted that participants who drank the Concord grape juice showed significant improvement in list learning and trends suggested improved short-term retention and spatial memory.
Dr. Krikorian said: "These results with Concord grape juice are very encouraging and certainly warrant additional study. A simple, easy-to-incorporate dietary intervention that could improve or protect memory function, such as drinking Concord grape juice daily, may be beneficial for the aging population."
Study collaborators included Tiffany Nash and Marcelle Shidler from the University of Cincinnati as well as James Joseph and Barbara Shukitt-Hale from the USDA-ARS Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University.
The results were presented at the 38th annual scientific meeting of the American Aging Society in Boulder, Colorado May 30-June 2, 2008.