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Thursday 31 July 2014

Champagne can ‘help improve memory’

7th May, 2013 by Andy Young

New research has suggested that three glasses of Champagne a week can help to improve your memory.

Champagne bottle poppingScientists at Reading University say that a regular dose of bubbles can help in the fight against brain disorders such as Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Jeremy Spencer, a biochemistry professor who led the research, said: “Dementia probably starts in the 40s and goes on to the 80s. It is a gradual decline and so the earlier people take these beneficial compounds in champagne, the better.”

Professor Spencer’s team said that the compound phenolic acid is what can boost memories. Phenolic acid is found in the black grapes, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, both of which are used in the production of Champagne.

The professor told the Mail on Sunday that the research team had put Champagne into the food for rats every day for six weeks. The rats then ran in a maze to find a treat, with the test repeated after five minutes to see if the rats remembered where to go.

The rats that had no Champagne had a 50% success rate, but this went up to 70% in the rats that had Champagne in their diet.

Professor Spencer now hopes to take a trial to humans, with around 60 pensioners being asked to drink Champagne for three years. It’s hard to imagine there will be a shortage of volunteers for this trial.

Spencer told the Mail on Sunday: “The results were dramatic. After rats consumed champagne regularly, there was a 200 per cent increase of proteins important for determining effective memory.

“This occurred in rats after just six weeks. We think it would take about three years in humans.

“This research is exciting because it illustrates for the first time that moderate consumption of champagne has the potential to influence cognitive functioning such as memory.”

A spokesman for the Alzheimer’s Society told the newspaper: “This is an interesting study, especially for those who enjoy a glass of bubbly. However, people should not start celebrating just yet. This is the first time a link between champagne and dementia risk reduction has been found. A lot more research is needed.”

This research is the latest in a long line of possible alcohol-related health benefits, including battling lung cancer, lowering cholesterol and helping with arthritis.

 

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