Herbs linked to preserving memories

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(KTVI) - Parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme.  Those herbs trigger thoughts of the old Simon and Garfunkel song Scarborough Fair.

But just one of those herbs may actually help preserve our memories and help us learn.

Dr. Susan Farr stopped by the studio to discuss which herb everyone should include in their diet.

Dr. Farr is the Research Professor of Geriatrics at Saint Louis University School of Medicine.

She talked about a study in which high doses of rosemary extract compound was shown to improve memory and learning in three tested behaviors.

Spearmint was also used in this study.

Subjects who consumed spearmint also had improved cognitive ability.

Dr. Farr noted that these studies were performed on animals.

She does not know how much rosemary or spearmint a human would need to consume to gain the same results.

Dr. Farr also said that olive oil was proven to clarify thinking.

The study showed that extra virgin olive oil is good for the mind and may even help those who already have mild dementia.

Extra virgin olive oil has many health benefits because it contains polyphenols, or rich antioxidants.

Dr. Farr used mice that had age-related impairments, comparable to  Alzheimer's disease, for her study.

For more information on Dr. Farr, visit: http://internalmed.slu.edu/geriatrics/index.php?page=susan-a-farr-ph-d

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