According to a new study, increasing magnesium intake may help improve memory and learning abilities while inadequate levels of the compound may impair cognitive function leading to the deterioration of memory in older adults.
Professor Guosong Liu, director of the Center for Learning and Memory at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China, and his colleagues developed a new compound capable of increasing magnesium saturation in the brain.
After boosting the levels of the nutrient in lab rats of different ages, the researchers found that magnesium supplementation was associated with positive behavioral and cellular changes.
"We found that increased brain magnesium enhanced many different forms of learning and memory in both young and aged rats," said Liu.
"Our findings suggest that elevating brain magnesium content via increasing intake might be a useful new strategy to enhance cognitive abilities," he added.
The researchers noted that control rats had a normal diet, which contained a typical daily amount of the nutrient, and that the beneficial effects were associated with levels higher than those provided by a standard diet.