Participants receiving cranberry supplements showed significant improvement in visual episodic memory — that is, the ability to remember details of what things looked like when compared to the control group.
Episodic memory is also associated with remembering the details of an event that happened before a person’s life (think of a first date, your wedding day, the birth of your child, etc.). This suggests that cranberries (and more specifically, polyphenols) play a major role in enhancing and maintaining memory in later life.
Researchers speculate that these improvements in memory may be due to increased blood flow to the enterohinal cortex – the gateway to information entering and leaving the hippocampus, where learning and memory formation take place.
In addition to its positive memory effects, cranberry supplements have also significantly reduced LDL cholesterol. LDL reduction (often referred to as “bad” cholesterol) demonstrates vascular health support and is thus a potential component of improved blood flow and cognitive performance outcomes. Cerebral blood flow and vascular health are important (and in our opinion, often overlooked) contributors to cognitive functioning and optimizing overall brain health. *