Turmeric for memory and cognition
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- Turmeric for memory and cognition
MIND & ENERGY
Every moment is different. Our mindset and focus change, our energy and stress levels fluctuate, and new challenges arise without notice, impacting our cognitive performances, mood, and sleep.
Good mental health is defined by the capacity of an individual to cope with these variations and perform a variety of essential roles and behaviors, including:
- Understanding, remembering and learning
- Dealing with stress and challenges
- Perceiving, communicating and controlling positive and negative emotions
- Establishing and maintaining good relationships with others
Mind & Energy is a continuum of 4 benefits:
Cognition refers to a number of mental abilities, including:
- Perception & attention
- Executive functions (decision-making process, problem-solving, doing things sequentially, withholding urges, pattern recognition, and flexibility)
- Processing speed
- Visual and spatial abilities
- Motor skills
- Social skills
Maintaining a healthy brain function is critical and defines our ability to interact safely and efficiently with our environment (notably memory, which is a vital cognitive mechanism that helps us learn and retrieve information when needed).
COGNITIVE DECLINE EPIDEMIOLOGY
While experiencing extra years of life, elderlies’ abilities in their daily lives are different from that of a younger person, mainly dominated by declines in physical and mental capacities. Indeed, it is usual in aging to witness impairment in cognitive performance, which generally affects multiple domains such as attention, processing speed, executive function, reasoning, and memory, commonly called « age-related cognitive decline ».
Between 2015 and 2050, the proportion of the world’s population over 60 years will nearly double from 12% to 22% (WHO), and ~30% of adults over 65 years will develop mild cognitive declines (causing a minor but perceptible and measurable decline in cognitive abilities, such as memory and discerning skills).
MANAGEMENT OF COGNITION
Several lifestyle factors, including our diet, have been identified as potential candidates for improving brain health and cognitive function. Indeed, food supplements have been proven effective for memory, mood, acuity, anti-aging, and anxiety.
Cognitive health supplements can be natural compounds or herbal extracts that enhance healthy individuals’ memory, ingenuity, focus, motivation, and attentiveness. Products traditionally used include omega-3 (fish oil), Ginkgo biloba, vitamins, and minerals. Although these ingredients are still popular, many others demonstrate promise. Indeed, some epidemiological studies showed that the consumption of foods containing turmeric is associated with a reduced incidence of cognitive decline.
Nowadays, due to awareness and demand for natural herbal extracts, curcuminoids from turmeric are considered one of the nutrition industry’s rising stars to support mind health, cognitive function, and memory.
WHAT DOES SCIENCE SAY?
Numerous research studies have sought to investigate age-related memory loss and neuroprotective effects of curcuminoids in preclinical and clinical studies.
Evidence from studies investigating curcuminoid benefits in various rodent models of cognitive decline and normal or accelerated aging demonstrated curcuminoid ability to impact positively neurogenesis and brain development. Indeed, various investigations suggest that curcumin and curcuminoids can cross the brain-blood barrier, reaching brain cells to slow down oxidative stress and inflammation, both implicated in age-associated cognitive decline.
Epidemiological studies showed that the consumption of foods containing polyphenol-rich turmeric is consistent with a decreased rate of cognitive impairment (Ng 2006, Hishikawa 2012, Chandra 2001). While human clinical evidence can be divergent, the interesting association between turmeric supplementation and better cognitive function in the elderly remains promising (Rahman Sarker 2018). The discrepancy in clinical efficacy may be attributed to the poor bioavailability of curcumin(oids) regarding independent forms of distribution, as well as the fact that many trials have focused on the effects of curcuminoids in patients suffering advanced disorders, with extended neurodegeneration and other pathological features (Howes 2019). Considering a recent meta-analysis from Zhu et al., curcuminoids appear to be more effective in improving or maintaining cognitive functions in the elderly than in those with advanced dementia (Zhu 2019).
Based on preclinical evidence, the mechanistic effects of curcumin and curcuminoids provide hope for studying its impact on brain health in the general aging population and in relation to some risk of cognitive decline. All together with clinical data, it brings a strong rationale for the supplementation of curcuminoids from turmeric to influence cognitive performances in healthy aging. We thus strongly believe that a cost-effective daily dose of 300mg of Turmipure Gold® may support memory and age-related cognitive decline.
TAKE HOME MESSAGES
HOW DOES IT WORK? MECHANISM OF ACTION
Curcuminoids from turmeric with strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties have shown an ability to preserve brain health by reducing neuroinflammation, inhibiting neuronal damage, and exerting powerful neuroprotective effects.
Several mechanisms were highlighted:
- Neuroprotective effect of curcuminoids has been strongly associated to the combination of Nrf-2 activation and NFκβ inhibition
- Inhibition of neuronal damage and subsequent progression of cognitive decline by fighting free radicals,
- Modulation of growth and maturation of neuronal cells by stimulating brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels, an essential protein for cognitive function.