Multivitamin lifts brain activity, memory

November 2, 2012, Swinburne University of Technology

(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: Regular use of vitamin and mineral supplements could reduce the risk of colon cancer: study

Related Stories

Regular use of vitamin and mineral supplements could reduce the risk of colon cancer: study

February 3, 2012
Could the use of vitamin and mineral supplements in a regular diet help to reduce the risk of colon cancer and protect against carcinogens? A study published in the Canadian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology (CJPP) found ...

Study reports greater brain activation after cognitive rehabilitation for MS

January 17, 2012
Neuroscientists at Kessler Foundation have documented increased cerebral activation in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) following memory retraining using the modified Story Memory Technique (mSMT).

Taking vitamin pills may undermine motivation to reduce smoking

August 2, 2011
A new study has found that smokers who take multivitamins offset their healthy behaviour by smoking more cigarettes. This is an example of what psychologists call the licensing effect, which occurs when people make a virtuous ...

Multivitamin use among middle-aged, older men results in modest reduction in cancer

October 17, 2012
In a randomized trial that included nearly 15,000 male physicians, long-term daily multivitamin use resulted in a modest but statistically significant reduction in cancer after more than a decade of treatment and follow-up, ...

Recommended for you

Brain zaps may help curb tics of Tourette syndrome

January 16, 2018
Electric zaps can help rewire the brains of Tourette syndrome patients, effectively reducing their uncontrollable vocal and motor tics, a new study shows.

A 'touching sight': How babies' brains process touch builds foundations for learning

January 16, 2018
Touch is the first of the five senses to develop, yet scientists know far less about the baby's brain response to touch than to, say, the sight of mom's face, or the sound of her voice.

Researchers identify protein involved in cocaine addiction

January 16, 2018
Mount Sinai researchers have identified a protein produced by the immune system—granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF)—that could be responsible for the development of cocaine addiction.

Neuroscientists suggest a model for how we gain volitional control of what we hold in our minds

January 16, 2018
Working memory is a sort of "mental sketchpad" that allows you to accomplish everyday tasks such as calling in your hungry family's takeout order and finding the bathroom you were just told "will be the third door on the ...

Brain imaging predicts language learning in deaf children

January 15, 2018
In a new international collaborative study between The Chinese University of Hong Kong and Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, researchers created a machine learning algorithm that uses brain scans to predict ...

Preterm babies may suffer setbacks in auditory brain development, speech

January 15, 2018
Preterm babies born early in the third trimester of pregnancy are likely to experience delays in the development of the auditory cortex, a brain region essential to hearing and understanding sound, a new study reveals. Such ...

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.