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Marmite yeast extract may help to boost brain function - study

06/04/2017

Marmite yeast extract may help to boost brain function - studyThe slogan for British yeast extract Marmite is 'You either love it or hate it'. And while many people in America may not have even heard of it, a new study will come as good news for lovers of the popular food stuff.

A by-product of beer brewing, Marmite is a sticky, almost black coloured food paste with a very distinctive, powerful, salty flavour. People in the UK usually eat it in sandwiches or on toast.

According to a study conducted by researchers from the University of York in the UK, Marmite could help boost brain function. The study found that participants who ate one teaspoon of Marmite every day displayed a reduced response to visual stimuli - an indicator of increased levels of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain.

Simply put, GABA "clams" the human brain and helps restore the optimal balance of neuronal activity required for healthy brain functioning.

Low GABA levels have previously been linked with anxiety, depression, epilepsy, and autism. That's why researchers have been looking at ways to increase GABA levels in the brain.

Speaking about the findings of the research, Senior author Dr. Daniel Baker, of the Department of Psychology at York, said: "Since we've found a connection between diet and specific brain processes involving GABA, this research paves the way for further studies looking into how diet could be used as a potential route to understanding this neurotransmitter."

The study serves as a great reminder of how diet has the ability to alter brain processes.
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