Taking a daily multivitamin may improve memory in older adults: study
by aparodyoflife ·
A new study shows that taking a daily multivitamin supplement may improve memory and slow cognitive decline in aging adults.
The findings could have major implications for the millions of Americans suffering from dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
The study, published Thursday, is the third in a series conducted as part of the Cocoa Supplement and Multivitamin Outcome Study (COSMOS), a large, nationwide clinical trial testing cocoa extract and multivitamin supplements to see if they can improve cognition and reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. . .
In two previous studies, the group found that daily multivitamins have a positive effect on cognition. The current study combines a study of more than 500 participants with a meta-analysis of data from more than 5,000 participants, both groups with an average age of 69 years.
“Cognitive decline is among the most important health concerns for most older adults, and daily multivitamin supplementation has the potential to be an attractive and accessible approach to slowing cognitive aging,” said first author Chirag Vyas, a professor of investigation in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard University. Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) said in a statement announcing the study.
For the first part of the study, researchers conducted subjective cognitive assessments on 573 people. The results, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, showed that taking a daily multivitamin improved memory and cognition over two years, compared to a placebo.
Those who took the multivitamin showed memory equivalent to someone about five years younger than them and had cognition equivalent to someone two years younger than them.
In addition, statistically significant benefits were seen in improvements in episodic memory — that is, the ability to recall a memory — but not in executive attention, which is the ability to block out distractions and focus on a task.
The team also conducted a meta-analysis based on three separate studies, with non-overlapping participants, and similarly found that taking a multivitamin showed benefits for memory and cognition, which may help older adults with nutrient deficiencies.
Dr Olivia Okereke, lead researcher, said: “These findings will be of interest to many older adults who are very interested in ways to maintain brain health, as they provide evidence for the role of daily vitamins in supporting better cognitive aging.” of the report and the director of geriatric psychiatry at MGH, in a statement.
There are currently an estimated 6.7 million people in the United States living with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, a number that is expected to rise to 14 million by 2060, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Previous research has already shown that the risk of dementia can be slowed by maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including controlling high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity and depression. Smoking less, abstaining from heavy drinking, and getting plenty of physical exercise may also improve brain health, according to the CDC.
The new study had limitations, including that the multivitamin used was from the Centrum Silver brand, meaning other brands of multivitamins may not produce the same results. It is also unclear what specific vitamins in the multivitamin itself contributed to the positive effects.
In addition, 98% of study participants were white, so the results of the new study may not be generalizable to non-white populations.
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