New Zealand blackcurrants boost brain health
New Zealand is full of nature wonders. And now, blackcurrants from the land of the long white cloud have been found to keep us mentally radiant and youthful. It sounds like a skincare commercial, but the proof is in the science.
A new study placed ‘Blackadder’ blackcurrants under the microscope. It revealed that the New Zealand fruit boosts mood and memory, enhances accuracy and attention, and could even guard against Parkinson’s and other neurodegenerative disorders.
And the researchers who led the study say the blackberries could also be used to treat depression and anxiety.
How do blackcurrants improve health?
Lead researcher Dr Arjan Scheepens said the ‘Blackadder’ lowers the production of monoamine oxidases enzymes, which over time reduces serotonin and dopamine in the brain.
"It turned out [the blackcurrant] was phenomenally active, and as active as a pharmaceutical drug and I was very surprised,” Dr Scheepens was quoted.
The study, published in the Journal of Functional Foods, was one of five undertaken by the team at Plant and Food Research. All five studies revealed the same results.
What did the ‘Blackadder’ study involve?
The study had 36 healthy participants, who drank either a glass of placebo drink, blackcurrant extract drink, or cold-pressed blackcurrant juice before undertaking challenging mental tests.
Those who drank the blackcurrant varieties experienced significantly improved attention and mood, while their mental fatigue declined.
Furthermore, the brain enzymes also were significantly lower in those who drank the extract or juice.
To add more blackcurrants to your diet, add a few to a juice or smoothie, fruit salad or as a juice. Delicious!
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