Ginger may improve cognitive function in women

March 5, 2012

A study published in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine shows that ginger may help enhance memory and improve key indicators of cognitive function.

In the study, 60 healthy, middle-aged women were given a daily dose of ginger extract (either 400 mg or 800 mg) or a placebo for two months. The researchers put the women through a computerized battery of tests to measure different aspects of memory and brain function, or cognition. They found that daily ginger intake, especially at the higher amount, led to improvements in working memory—a key finding given the increasing rates of memory decline common in middle-aged women. There were significant improvements in four key brain functions: power of attention, accuracy of attention, speed of memory, and quality of memory.

The researchers concluded that, “ginger extract enhances both attention and cognitive processing capabilities of healthy, middle-aged women, with no side effects reported.”

Although more research is needed to fully understand the mechanism behind this effect, the researchers suggest ginger could be a “potential brain tonic to enhance cognitive function.”