25 Jun 2015

NZ blackcurrants improve mental agility

3:46 pm on 25 June 2015

Researchers say New Zealand blackcurrants can keep people mentally young and agile, and aid in managing the effects of depression and Parkinson's disease..


Photo: 123RF

A study conducted by scientists at New Zealand's Plant & Food Research, in collaboration with Britain's Northumbria University, showed the compounds found in New Zealand blackcurrants increased accuracy, attention and mood.

The research also found juice from a specific New Zealand blackcurrant cultivar, Blackadder, reduced the activity of the enzymes which regulate serotonin and dopamine concentrations in the brain.

The study saw healthy adults drink blackcurrant juice or a placebo before conducting a set of demanding mental performance assessments.

Doctor Arjan Scheepens said attention and mood were improved after drinking the juice, while mental fatigue was reduced.