Posted on Dec 05, 2013, 6 a.m.
Enhanced extracts made from special antioxidants in spearmint and rosemary improve learning and memory, suggests data from a laboratory animal model.
Oxidative damage is considered one of the hallmarks of the aging process, with a number of previous studies demonstrating that the structural and functional damage to mitochondria characteristic in Alzheimer’s Disease. Susan Farr, from St. Souis University (Missouri, USA), and colleagues administered enhanced extracts made from special antioxidants found in spearmint and rosemary, to a mouse model of age-related cognitive decline. The team found that a higher-dose rosemary extract compound was effective for improving memory and learning in three tested behaviors. The lower-dose rosemary extract, as well as the compound made from spearmint extract, improved memory in two behavioral tests. As well, the researchers observed that the enhanced herb extracts reduce the markers of oxidative stress. The study authors conclude that: “The current results indicate that the extracts from spearmint (carnosic acid) and rosemary (rosmarinic acid) have beneficial effects on learning and memory and brain tissue markers of oxidation that occur with age in [a laboratory animal model]."
Farr SA, et al. “Antioxidant extracts from rosemary and spearmint improve learning, memory and reduce oxidative stress in samp8 mice” [Abstract 436.14/T12]. Presentation at Neuroscience 2013 (Society for Neuroscience], 11 Nov. 2013.