"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

Can a multivitamin improve your memory?

We are bombarded with advertisements for vitamins and supplements touting all styles of health advantages, including improved memory. Oh May 2023 study Among older adults, it suggests that a every day multivitamin can just do that — improve your memory enough to operate as in the event you were three years younger.

So, do you have to be taking that every day multivitamin? Let's take a more in-depth have a look at the study.

Who participated on this multivitamin study?

This is an element of the research. A great study To evaluate the results of multivitamins and/or cocoa (the foremost ingredient in chocolate) on cardiovascular and cancer outcomes. Oh First sub-study It found that a every day multivitamin improved considering and memory — at the very least when tested with a cognitive test accomplished by phone.

For this study, 3,562 participants were willing and capable of take some tests of considering and memory on a house computer. half received a multivitamin; The other half received a placebo.

Participants identified as 93% White, 2.5% African American, and 1.4% Hispanic, so results is probably not generalizable. They were also well educated: greater than half had accomplished college. The mean age in each groups was 71 years.

How did researchers test memory?

The investigators assessed the participants' considering and memory at baseline and after one, two and three years.

For the memory test, participants were asked to recollect 20 consecutive words displayed on a pc screen. Immediately after viewing these words they'd to type as many words as they might recall (this was the first measure of memory). Fifteen minutes later, in addition they typed in all of the words they remembered (a secondary measure of memory).

Other secondary measures include:

  • A brand new object discrimination test (is that this object the identical or different from the one recently shown?).
  • An executive control test (in an array of nine arrows, is the central arrow red or blue?)

Participants repeated all tests after one, two and three years.

What were the outcomes of this study?

The two groups differed in immediate recall at one 12 months:

  • Those who took the placebo immediately went from recalling a median of seven.21 words at baseline to 7.65 words (a difference of 0.43 words).
  • Those who took the every day multivitamin group increased from 7.10 words at baseline to 7.81 words (a difference of 0.70 words).

This result was statistically significant. Furthermore, these small effects persevered at two and three years. By three years, the placebo group recalled a median of 8.17 words immediately and the multivitamin group immediately recalled 8.28 words.

There were no differences between the 2 groups on secondary memory and executive function tests.

How can a multivitamin improve memory?

The authors note that low levels of vitamin B12 And D has been linked to cognitive decline and dementia. In a subset of participants who had their blood drawn, levels of those vitamins increased within the multivitamin group.

It seems plausible that a number of the 3,562 participants had low levels of those or other vitamins necessary for considering and memory. In the placebo group, those that were deficient within the vitamin showed less improvement, or a smaller decline, in memory after the baseline test. In contrast, the few participants within the multivitamin group who had deficiencies would correct them with supplements and due to this fact perform relatively higher.

Although that is just speculation, it might explain the small but apparently real results — findings that replicate the researchers' earlier study, which showed advantages of every day multivitamins for considering and memory. A cognitive test is used.

It's also value noting that practice on memory tasks—the so-called practice effect—may contribute to the small improvements seen from baseline to 12 months one and 12 months three.

Should you are taking a multivitamin to enhance your memory?

The authors acknowledged that the multivitamin's effect on immediate memory was small and will not have been noticeable. However, they identified that this small effect might be significant on the population level.

My opinion? You shouldn't trouble taking a multivitamin to try to enhance your immediate recall of 20 words from 8.17 to eight.28 words. But it's value talking to your doctor about whether you is perhaps deficient in B vitamins.1B6B12, D, or some other necessary vitamin. Every week I see several patients in my clinic with shockingly low vitamin D and B levels.12. Your doctor will probably want to measure these levels. Or they could recommend taking a every day multivitamin.

If, after reading this text, you will have decided to take a multivitamin, please check along with your doctor or pharmacist to seek out out which one could be best for you. Be sure to review some other vitamins, supplements, and medications you are taking to avoid rare but serious interactions.