Vitamin C and beta-carotene are the ‘power vitamins’ for staying mentally sharp
Your chances of becoming forgetful – or even suffering dementia – as you get older are dramatically reduced if you take plenty of vitamin C and beta-carotene when you’re younger. The other ‘power vitamins’ for mental sharpness are vitamin E, lycopene and coenzyme Q10, researchers have discovered.
Alzheimer’s patients are low in all the vitamins, and especially in vitamin C and beta-carotene, compared to healthy people who have remained mentally sharp.
The researchers from the University of Ulm reckon the vitamins can also protect against the milder symptoms of Alzheimer’s and dementia, such as forgetfulness, orientation problems and general cognitive decline.
They made the discovery when they did a blood analysis of 74 Alzheimer’s patients and compared it against 158 healthy people.
The researchers say they had taken into account other factors that can also affect cognitive ability, such as education, alcohol and smoking, and weight, and that the vitamin deficiency is still a major cause.
(Source: Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 2012; 31: 717-24).