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B Vitamins for Memory

B Vitamins may boost memory.  In a study from Australia, the results showed that older adults who took Vitamin B9 (Folic Acid) and Vitamin B12 (Cyanocobalamin) supplements for two years had greater improvements on short-term and long-term memory as compared to adults who did not take the supplements.

The study included more than 700 people, aged 60-74 years, who showed signs of depression (but were not diagnosed with clinical depression).  The study targeted older people with depressive symptoms due to evidence of the correlation of  depression later in life and the increased risk of cognitive impairment.

The adults took a daily dose of Vitamin B9 (100 mcg) and Vitamin B12 (400 mcg) or a placebo that resembled the vitamins.  The participants of the study were not aware if they were taking the vitamins or the placebo.

After 1 year, there were no difference between the group taking the vitamins and the group taking the placebo.  The difference showed at 2 years into the study, the group taking the vitamins showed a larger improvement on the memory tasks. 

The benefits were modest, yet encouraging, with the indication that the vitamins "may have an important role in promoting healthy aging and mental well-being, as well as sustaining good cognitive function for longer on a community-wide scale," as stated by Janine Walker, researcher at the Australian National University and lead author of the study. 

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