We know berries have plenty of health benefits, but a new study may have added another:
Blueberries, strawberries, and acai berries (and possibly walnuts) may, finds a recent study discussed on Eureka, "activate the brain's natural 'housekeeper' mechanism, which cleans up and recycles toxic proteins linked to age-related memory loss and other mental decline."
Berries contain polyphenolics, which likely protect against signs of aging that are associated with the body's diminished ability to protect against inflammation and oxidative damage.
The doctor who presented the report said that microglia, which remove and recycle biochemical debris that would otherwise interfere with brain function, stop doing their job as a person gets older—and debris builds up. He continued:
"In addition, the microglia become over-activated and actually begin to damage healthy cells in the brain. Our research suggests that the polyphenolics in berries have a rescuing effect. They seem to restore the normal housekeeping function. These findings are the first to show these effects of berries."