Boosting energy, alertness, agility: New studies support efficacy of Neumentix

By Stephen Daniells

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images / nevarpp
© Getty Images / nevarpp
Two new papers add further support for the cognitive health boosts associated with daily intake of Kemin’s Neumentix spearmint (Mentha spicata L.) extract.

Neumentix is a polyphenol-rich ingredient derived from clonal lines of spearmint have been developed by Kemin for their content of rosmarinic acid (the key polyphenol bioactive). The natural spearmint extract contains 14.5% rosmarinic acid and 24% total phenolic content. The ingredient is positioned for cognitive health and its efficacy is supported by data published in peer-review journals.

Adding to the already published data is a new small study focusing on elite military personnel, which suggested that supplementation with the spearmint extract for 17 days led to “improvements in energy, focus, and alertness after a tactical operation that occurred during a 24-hour period of sleep deprivation”​, according to a paper published in The Journal of Special Operations Medicine​.  

The small scale of the study (10 participants) is a definite limitation, but the researchers, led by Jay Hoffman, PhD, from the Institute of Exercise Physiology and Wellness at the University of Central Florida, called for additional studies with more participants.

Brenda Fonseca, senior global technical service manager with Kemin Human Nutrition and Health, commented: “We know that stress can negatively impact our mental performance in important areas of executive function. We also know that stress can rob us of our feelings of energy and make us feel drained. Most of us aren’t able to take a vacation from the daily demands of life, so an ingredient that can help us feel energized even under the normal stresses of daily life is very exciting.

Keep in mind, these are preliminary results and more research is needed,”​ continued Fonseca, “but it is possible that Neumentix may help to improve feelings of energy in healthy adults under stressed or sleep-deprived conditions.”

Reactive agility

A second study, published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition​, found that 90 days of supplementation with 900 mg per day of Neumentix was associated with significant improvements in results obtained with the Makoto Arena, a unique research tool that measures reaction time to stimuli, mental focus and hand-eye, foot-eye coordination.

Led by Paul Falcone of Kemin (he was with the MusclePharm Sports Science Institute at the time the study was conducted), the researchers randomly assigned 142 young, healthy men and women (average age of 27) to receive either 900 mg per day of Neumentix or placebo for 90 days.

Six stationary, lateral, and multi-directional tests were performed at the Makoto Arena II near Chicago at the start of the study, and again after 7, 30, and 90 days.

Results showed that participants in the Neumentix group showed improved reaction time in a stationary test of choice reaction performance as early as 7 days, while improvements in hit rate in both stationary and multi-directional choice reaction performance testing were observed at 30 days. The improvements were still present at 90 days, said the researchers.

“The present study is the first to observe an improvement in reactive agility following consumption of 900 mg of [proprietary spearmint extract] for 90 days, as measured by the Makoto device using both the stationary test and the multi-directional test with footplates at selected timepoints,”​ wrote researchers from MusclePharm Sports Science Institute and Kemin Foods.

“By demonstrating improvements on specific measurements of choice reaction performance in a young, healthy population, the findings of the present study expand on previous studies on [proprietary spearmint extract] which showed improvement in cognitive function.

“The present study supports the use of [proprietary spearmint extract] as a safe nootropic with potential downstream benefits in athletic performance, particularly in combat sports.”

Both studies were funded by Iowa-based Kemin Foods.

The Journal of Special Operations Medicine
Volume 18, Edition 4 / Winter 2018, Pages 94-94
“Effect of Spearmint Extract Containing Rosmarinic Acid on Physical and Executive Functioning After a Tactical Operation”
Authors: I. Ostfeld et al.

Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition
2018, 15​:58, doi: 10.1186/s12970-018-0264-5
“Efficacy of a nootropic spearmint extract on reactive agility: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel trial”
Authors: P.H. Falcone et al.

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