Dr Bollmann, Anti-Aging and Skin Care Specialist

A number of previous studies have reported cognitive-enhancing effects of caffeine.  Michael Yassa, from Johns Hopkins University (Maryland, USA), and colleagues explored the effect of caffeine to strengthen memories to reduce forgetting over a 24-hour period.  The researchers conducted a double-blind trial; participants who did not regularly eat or drink caffeinated products received either a placebo or a 200-milligram caffeine tablet five minutes after studying a series of images. Salivary samples were taken from the participants before they took the tablets to measure their caffeine levels. Samples were taken again one, three and 24 hours afterwards. The next day, both groups were tested on their ability to recognize images from the previous day's study session. On the test, some of the visuals were the same as from the day before, some were new additions and some were similar but not the same as the items previously viewed. More members of the caffeine group were able to correctly identify the new images as "similar" to previously viewed images versus erroneously citing them as the same. The team submits that the brain's ability to recognize the difference between two similar but not identical items, called pattern separation, reflects a deeper level of memory retention. Observing that: “Caffeine enhanced performance 24 h after administration,” the study authors: “conclude that caffeine enhanced consolidation of long-term memories in humans.”X


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