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Flavonoid-Rich Mixed Berries Maintain and Improve Cognitive Function Over a 6 h Period in Young Healthy Adults

School of Psychology & Clinical Language Sciences, University of Reading, Earley Gate, Reading, Berkshire, RG6 6AL, UK
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
The authors contributed equally to this work.
Nutrients 2019, 11(11), 2685; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11112685
Received: 10 September 2019 / Revised: 18 October 2019 / Accepted: 22 October 2019 / Published: 6 November 2019
Research with young adults has previously indicated flavonoid-rich berry interventions facilitate improved executive function (EF) and positive affect 20 min–2 h post-dosing. There has been little consideration of the impact of a berry intervention over a working day and interventions have also tended to consider only a single berry type. This study investigated the temporal profile of EF and mood changes over a 6 h period following a mixed-berry intervention. We hypothesized berry-related benefits would be most evident when participants were cognitively compromised on demanding elements of the task or during periods of fatigue. The study employed a single-blind, randomized, placebo controlled, between-subjects design. Forty participants aged 20–30 years consumed a 400 mL smoothie containing equal blueberry, strawberry, raspberry, and blackberry (n = 20) or matched placebo (n = 20). Mood was assessed using the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule; EF was tested using the Modified Attention Network (MANT) and Task Switching (TST) Tasks. Testing commenced at baseline then 2, 4 and 6 h post-dosing. As expected, following placebo intervention, performance decreased across the day as participants became cognitively fatigued. However, following berry intervention, participants maintained accuracy on both cognitive tasks up to and including 6 h, and demonstrated quicker response times on the MANT at 2 and 4 h, and TST at 6 h. This study demonstrates the efficacy of flavonoid rich berries in maintaining or improving cognitive performance across the 6 h day. View Full-Text
Keywords: berry; blueberry; raspberry; strawberry; blackberry; polyphenol; flavonoid; cognition; executive function; mood berry; blueberry; raspberry; strawberry; blackberry; polyphenol; flavonoid; cognition; executive function; mood
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Whyte, A.R.; Cheng, N.; Butler, L.T.; Lamport, D.J.; Williams, C.M. Flavonoid-Rich Mixed Berries Maintain and Improve Cognitive Function Over a 6 h Period in Young Healthy Adults. Nutrients 2019, 11, 2685.

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