5 Time-Tested Ingredients Known to Support Cognitive Health


Ever since the industrial era began, man has been inventing machines that make life easier and more productive. In the last few decades, man has made unbelievable technological progress. The human brain has been the powerhouse of all these inventions and development. Scientists have been busy studying the human brain to find out what makes this 3-pound organ do such wondrous things. In their discovery, they have also tried to find ways to improve brain function and cognitive health. Research studies have led scientists to believe that certain nutraceuticals may help support optimal brain functions.

Who needs brain health supplements?

In this technology-driven, fast-paced, competitive world, we all need all the help we can get to keep on top of our game. When you take into account the growing aging population who want brain health formulas to support memory and cognitive function, it’s easy to understand why brain health supplements are becoming increasingly popular.

These trends are confirmed by facts and figures. The cognitive health sector is growing at a fast pace. Datamonitor notes the growth at 11 percent annually, while SPINS puts the growth at 13 percent.1Factors driving growth are:

  • A growing aging population.
  • A competitive workforce where peak performance is key to job retention and career growth.
  • A growing awareness of nutraceuticals like DHA for supporting brain health through all phases of life.

What are the key ingredients supplement business owners can use to give their customers the most reliable brain health supplements? Here’s a look at 5 of the most well-known:

  1. Ginkgobiloba is derived from trees that live for thousands of years. The dried leaves of the maidenhair tree contain a number of highly potent antioxidants that are said to have neuroprotective properties. These leaves are used to make Ginkgobiloba extract (GBE). Studies have shown certain GBEs to have specific memory effects in healthy, middle-aged individuals, as well as significant improvement of episodic memory in elderly people. Ginkgo bilobais also known to improve social behavior and help support against anxiety.2-5
  2. Huperzine A is a Chinese herb derived from the moss A systematic review of Huperzine A shows that it may help to improve cognitive function and daily living. Studies from China and a few trials conducted in the United States show Huperzine A to be a powerful neuro protective agent.6-8
  3. BacopaMonnieri is an ancient herb used by the sages in India for thousands of years. Scientists in Australia have noted that bacopa may help to increase memory acquisition and retention in older adults. Evidence from this study shows bacopa may also offer antioxidant benefits in the brain.9-10
  4. Vitamin E is associated with healthy cognitive function. The Archives of Neurology published the findings of researchers who surveyed 5,000 people aged 55 and older who did not have dementia. One-third of these who consumed the most Vitamin E were studied. It was observed that they were 25 percent less likely to experience cognitive challenges than the one-third who consumed the least vitamin E. Researchers believe that vitamin E’s antioxidant properties may be responsible for supporting cognitive health, particularly as people age.11

Studies have shown a correlation between reduced levels of vitamin E and oxidative stress markers in individuals with mild age-related cognitive decline.12

  1. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), one of the two omega-3 fatty acids found abundantly in fatty fish and nuts, is said to be an important component of the brain. About 15 to 20 percent of the cerebral cortex is comprised of DHA, which is said to provide the optimum condition for healthy brain function. Adequate amounts are needed during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, and throughout life. DHA has been seen to improve reading scores of children, and improve their social behavior. In the elderly, it has been seen to benefit learning and memory. There is also a large body of study showing the role of DHA, along with eicosapentaenoic acid in promoting cardiovascular health.13-15

Manufacturing a Reliable Brain Health Supplement

While there is evidence from research backing these brain health ingredients, supplement business owners need to consider the following:

  • Which ingredients go well together for synergistic effect?
  • Which form of each ingredient is most beneficial?

The right supplement manufacturer can guide you towards using ingredients that have been well-studied and are well-known for their efficacy. An experienced supplement manufacturer like NutraScience Labs will help you choose ingredients that may increase the efficacy and strength of your formula. Using a manufacturer that completes all of its capsule, tablet, and powder production services in facilities that are cGMP certified is also a must if you’re looking to offer your customers high-quality dietary supplements.


  1. http://www.nutraceuticalsworld.com/issues/2014-10/view_features/a-yes-brainer/
  2. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22704410
  3. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21802920
  4. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/hup.2259/abstract
  5. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16808927
  6. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24086396
  7. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21833673
  8. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2398696/
  9. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20590480
  10. http://www.nature.com/npp/journal/v27/n2/full/1395862a.html
  11. http://thechart.blogs.cnn.com/2010/07/12/how-vitamins-ed-may-help-the-brain/
  12. http://www.nutraingredients-usa.com/Research/Vitamin-E-The-overlooked-nutrient-and-its-brain-health-benefits
Kevin Agrawal
Kevin Agrawal is currently working at Nutrasciencelabs.com, he has been in the vitamin and the supplement manufacturing industry for the last 10 years. He is passionate about new topics that come up that could affect the industry trends