New findings from an Agricultural Research Service (ARS) funded research suggest that berry extracts may protect damages to brain functions.
The Researchers found that laboratory animals, which were fed berry extracts and then treated to accelerate the aging process, were protected from damage to brain function.
Three groups of total 60 rats (20 rats in each) were studied for about three months. The control group was fed a standard diet of grain-based chow. A second group was fed chow with blueberry extract equal to one cup daily in humans. A third group was fed chow with strawberry extract equal to one pint daily in humans.
After two months on the diets, half of the rats in each group were treated to induce the normal losses in learning and motor skills that often come with aging. Compared to the aged control rats, the aged-but-supplemented rats were much better able to find and in some cases remember the location of an underwater platform.
To conclude, these new findings adds evidence to the past studies published during the past eight years showing reduced, or in some cases reversed, declines in brain function among rats whose diets were supplemented with either blueberry, cranberry or strawberry extracts or concord grape juice.