Memory performance declines with age. Things are forgotten and the risk of dementia can increase dramatically. Researchers at the Universities of Graz, Berlin and Innsbruck have discovered a natural substance that is said to improve cognitive performance in the long term and slow down mental decline with increasing age: Spermidine is found in wheat germ, mushrooms and nuts, as well as in many other foods. In fact, a diet rich in spermidine is associated with improved brain performance in the elderly over the long term. This has been proven in experiments with animals and human subjects.
Better cognitive abilities thanks to spermidine
As part of a long-term study, spermidine was shown to improve the function of mitochondria in the area of the hippocampus. This area of the brain is crucial for the absorption of information and for memory. It has long been known that the performance of the cells decreases significantly with increasing age and that the brain cells are supplied with less energy.
The intake of spermidine in the daily diet triggers a special biochemical reaction chainthat helps to stimulate the production of mitochondrial proteins. This supports the energy supply of the brain cells. The result is, among other things, the improvement of cognitive performance.
Spermidine does more – in mice and humans
By increasing mitochondrial proteins, humans benefit from the following effects, among others:
- Increase of cellular energy supply in the brain
- improved memory
- increased cognitive performance
- positive influence on the body’s own “recycling system” of the cells for protection against diseases
- Protection against mental degradation
People who start a spermidine-rich diet early can significantly increase their own thinking ability as they age. Spermidine counteracts mental decline, learning is easier, and the cognitive performance portfolio declines less over time. Because spermidine acts on mitochondria and cellular disposal processes in the body, these and other positive effects can be achieved. This knowledge opens up new opportunities with regard to the prevention and treatment of age-related mental decline, dementia and other health impairments.
Spermidine: Many questions are still open
Why performance declines with increasing age is still not fully understood. In fact, only about two percent of the human brain has been researched.To date, scientists have held molecular mechanisms in the brain responsible for the development of age-related performance decline, among other things. Because the current state of research leaves many questions unanswered, it is still not possible to develop effective preventive and therapeutic concepts to stop the mental deterioration of humans.
The background to the new super active ingredient
The activity of nerve and brain cells is accompanied by high energy consumption. This increases continuously over the years. Therefore, the maintenance of mitochondrial activity in the brain plays a central role. The better they “work”, the more positive the effect on brain or memory performance.
Orally administered spermidine reaches the brain directly and supports cell performance through its neuroprotective effect. As memory performance increases, a more intensive cellular cleansing process is required. In this context, too, the importance of improving the function of mitochondria through the regular supply of spermidine is evident.
Improvements by Spermidin in many ways.
According to the researchers, spermidine supports the modification of the eIF5A protein. At the molecular level, this is essential for the successful production of proteins. Namely, as the basis for mitochondrial proteins to be formed. Human volunteers who had ingested the natural substance spermidine over five years showed significant improvements in their brain performance:
- The memory performance
- Executive performance, such as planning and thinking about certain issues and also the
- Language competence
improved significantly due to dietary spermidine intake.
Spermidine: effect known for several years
As early as 2009, researchers Tobias Eisenberg and Frank Madeo recognized the “anti-aging power” and health-promoting effect of spermidine. The essential function of the substance is to initiate a cellular purification process. This is known as autophagy. In the course of this, unusable or defective components of cells are either degraded or recycled. Thus, the human organism as a whole remains functional longer.
Since this discovery became known in 2009, more than 100 renowned institutes and laboratories worldwide have been entrusted with the further investigation of spermidine to date. In the future, experts from molecular bioscience, neurologists as well as epidemiological researchers will continue to look into the background of spermidine.
The chance of counteracting mental performance decline in old age with a natural substance, or perhaps even stopping it completely one day, seems extremely promising. Is spermidine really the future in the fight against dementia and memory loss?
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