Spearmint May Boost Memory and Sleep in People with Age-Associated Memory Impairment
Age-Associated memory impairment (AAMI) refers to the general degradation of memory that results from aging. A recent study suggests that taking a supplement of spearmint extract may help improve memory and sleep in adults with AAMI.
Participants in the study included 90 people between the ages of 50 and 70 with AAMI. They were given two capsules per day of either 600 mg of spearmint extract, 900 mg of spearmint extract, or a placebo for 90 days. All of the participants were assessed for cognition, mood, and sleep using the Cognitive Drug Research System, Leeds Sleep Evaluation Questionnaire, and Profile of Mood States, respectively..
At the conclusion of the study, the researchers noted a 15% improvement in quality of working memory performance and a 9% improvement in spatial working memory accuracy in the 900 mg spearmint group, when compared with the placebo. The 900 mg group also reported improvement in their ability to fall asleep.
Participants in the 900 mg group also showed improvements in vigor-activity, total mood disturbance, and alertness and behavior following wakefulness, compared to the placebo group.
Researchers from Kemin Foods led the study. It was published online ahead of print on January 1, 2018, in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine.
Previous studies suggest that spearmint may help improve digestion and respiratory health, help stabilize hormones, improve heart health, and boost the immune system. Spearmint has a pleasing flavor and can be eaten on its own or in salads but for best results, take a high quality supplement.