12 January - 20 June 2016

Research shows the cognitive benefits of blackcurrants

1 July 2015

A new study published by British and New Zealand researchers in the Journal of Functional Foods has analysed the effects of blackcurrant extracts on cognitive outcomes, mood, peripheral and central monoamine tone and anthocyanin bioavailability to plasma. The aim of the study was to explore the effects of an acute dietary supplementation with two blackcurrant extracts with the same quantities of polyphenols and sugars but with different phenolic profiles. 

36 healthy young participants (18-35 years) were used as part of the randomized double-blind, placebo controlled crossover study. The participants were given either a control drink containing either 0 mg of polyphenols or 525 mg polyphenols per 60kg of body weight from an anthocyanin-enriched blackcurrant extract (DelCyan) or from 142 mL of cold-pressed blackcurrant fruit juice (‘Blackadder’). All drinks were sugar matched. The volume of the drink was made up to 200mg with cold drinking water and was served in dark brown bottles so they were not aware of the drink the drink they were consuming. All participants received all three treatment drinks. 

The study has provided evidence of positive changes in behaviour following the consumption of the two blackcurrant extracts in comparison with the control; there were no negative effects of either. The results illustrate a cognitive benefit of acute blackcurrant supplementation in young healthy adults.

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