Multivitamin lifts brain activity, memory

November 2, 2012

(Medical Xpress)—A daily multivitamin supplement may improve brain efficiency in older women, according to new research from Swinburne University of Technology.

Centre for Human Psychopharmacology researcher at Swinburne, Dr Helen Macpherson's four month study of the commercial product Swisse Women's Ultivite 50+ found some evidence that multivitamin supplements may influence cognitive function by altering electrical activity in the brain.

"The main finding of the study was that 16 weeks supplementation with the Swisse Women's 50+ multivitamin modulated brain activity," Dr Macpherson said.

"This is an important result as it shows there are direct effects of multivitamins on the brain.

"Previous research has used measures of behaviour to determine whether multivitamins can affect , but this is the first trial to directly measure ."

The study was conducted over 16 weeks with 56 women aged between 64 and 79 who were concerned about their memory or experiencing memory difficulties. They were randomly assigned to take the multivitamin supplement or a placebo daily.

Volunteers underwent a recording of their brain electrical activity whilst performing a spatial working .

The research was published in Physiology and Behavior.

A previous paper published in Psychopharmacology reported that multivitamin supplementation improved behavioural performance on a similar task, in the same group of participants.

The study concluded that 16 weeks of supplementation with a combined multivitamin, mineral and herbal formula may benefit memory, by enabling the brain to work in a more efficient way.

"When considered with our other findings of benefits to , there is increasing evidence that multivitamins may be useful to combat in the elderly," Dr Macpherson said.

Explore further: Taking vitamin pills may undermine motivation to reduce smoking

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Deciphering the olfactory receptor code

August 31, 2015

In animals, numerous behaviors are governed by the olfactory perception of their surrounding world. Whether originating in the nose of a mammal or the antennas of an insect, perception results from the combined activation ...

Neuron responsible for alcoholism found

September 2, 2015

Scientists have pinpointed a population of neurons in the brain that influences whether one drink leads to two, which could ultimately lead to a cure for alcoholism and other addictions.

New mechanism discovered behind infant epilepsy

September 3, 2015

Scientists at Karolinska Institutet and Karolinska University Hospital in Sweden have discovered a new explanation for severe early infant epilepsy. Mutations in the gene encoding the protein KCC2 can cause the disease, hereby ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.