A new study suggests drinking Concord grape juice may improve cognitive performance in working mothers.
Researchers at the University of Leeds (United Kingdom) have found that working mothers who drink Welch’s (Concord, MA) brand Concord grape juice may experience improvements in cognitive performance, including memory.
Although cognitive benefits have been found in past research of older adults who drink Concord grape juice, Welch’s says this if the first time a similar finding has been found in a different demographic subset.
The randomized, double-blind, cross-over study included 25 healthy working women aged 40-50 years with pre-teen children. For 12 weeks, the women drank 355 ml per day of Concord grape juice or a placebo made from a grape-flavored, sugar-sweetened drink.
Participants performed several tests meant to assess cognitive performance over the course of the study, including a 25-minute driving simulator that asked participants to match the speed and direction of a lead vehicle. Compared to the placebo, researchers observed statistically significant improvements in immediate spatial memory and driving performance in the Concord grape juice group.
“This is the first time it has been found that the cognitive benefits associated with drinking Concord grape juice extend beyond older adults,” according to a Welch’s press release. The study results were presented at the recent International Conference on Polyphenols & Health in Tours, France.
Results of separate pre-clinical study were also presented at the conference, which found that polyphenols present in Concord grape juice may help slow the body’s absorption of naturally occurring sugars in juice. According to Welch’s, this preliminary research suggests drinking Concord grape juice may translate to improved blood glucose control.
“The findings presented at the International Conference on Polyphenols & Health add to the nearly 20 years of science linking Concord grape juice to heart health and suggest possible novel benefits in the areas of cognitive function and blood sugar control,” says Casey Lewis, dietitian and health & nutrition lead, Welch’s. “While more research is needed to add to this work, these new studies are promising, especially given the growing interest in the role of nutrition in cognitive wellbeing and ongoing dialogue around beverages and health.”
Nutritional Outlook Magazine