Curcumin improves memory in older people with mild memory loss
Over the years studies have shown that Curcumin, the major ingredient in Turmeric root, or taking Turmeric itself, improves memory in older people. Researchers at UCLA’s Longevity Center 40 older people with mild memory complaints into their study. Their age ranged from 50 to 90. They were randomly given Curcumin or placebo (a sham capsule) twice a day for 18 months. The participants wewre given cognitive assessment tests at the start of the study and every six months and their blood was tested to make sure they were actually taking the herbal ingredient. Many also received PET scans of their brains at the start of the study and again at the 18 month point.
In tests the people taking Curcumin had a 28 percent improvement in their memory over the 18 month period. The people on the placebo had no improvement. Those taking Curcumin also had a mild improvement in their mood. Their PET scan also showed significantly less evidence of beta-amyloid brain plaques and less of the tangled mess of nerve tissue known as tauopathy which are both found in Alzheimer’s disease; this was in their amygdale and hippocampus – regions of the brain involved with memory and emotional functions. The study is published in The American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry.