IFF’s green oat extract may improve mental processing and resilience to mental fatigue: Study

By Stephen Daniells contact

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IFF's Neuravena is extracted from an ancient wild oat variety, Avena Sativa L.    Image © kontrast-fotodesign / Getty Images
IFF's Neuravena is extracted from an ancient wild oat variety, Avena Sativa L. Image © kontrast-fotodesign / Getty Images

Related tags: green oat extract, Nootropic, Cognitive function, eSports, cognitive performance

A single dose of a green oat extract may improve a number of neurophysiological parameters, from cognitive control to attention and processing speed, says a new study.

Data published in the Frontiers in Neuroscience​ indicated that a single 800 mg dose of IFF’s Neuravena-branded green oat extract led to significant improvements in cognitive functioning within 60 minutes of consumption by young adults.

“While previous studies have shown a potential modulatory effect of Neuravena on neurophysiological activity as measured by EEG in the fronto-temporal brain region, and successive improvements in several measures of cognitive function, the current investigation provides evidence of an improvement in cognitive performance related to a concomitant neurophysiological effect,” ​wrote researchers from the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau in Barcelona, the Biomedical Research Institute in Barcelona, Centro de Investigación en Red-Enfermedades Neurodegenerativas (CIBERNED) in Madrid, and Frutarom (now IFF).

The ingredient

Neuravena, which is extracted from an ancient wild oat variety Avena Sativa​ L., was first launched in 2006 in Europe by Frutarom and into the US in 2009.

The ingredient’s efficacy for supporting brain health is supported by seven proprietary clinical studies, with the most recent showing improvements in brain activity, based on the electroencephalogram (EEG) measurements during task performance.

Commenting on the recent study, Trevor Wagner, business development manager, IFF Health, said: “Suitable for a wide range of consumers, Neuravena is highly marketable to those looking to address mental fatigue, reaction times and performance.

“Nootropics are often sought after by e-gamers aiming to naturally boost visual acuity, mental function and energy. With a fast-acting ingredient, such as Neuravena, esport enthusiasts, students and general consumers alike can benefit from an increased speed of sustained performance in cognitive tasks.”

Study details

Twenty healthy young adults with an average age of 25.5 were recruited for the single-session, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled. The volunteers were randomly assigned to receive either an 800 mg dose of Neuravena or placebo. Electroencephalographic (EEG) signals were recorded while they carried out a stop-signal task (a modified version of the Eriksen flanker task) and an auditory oddball task.

Results showed that the participants in the oat extract group had significantly lower error-related negativity, while performance in several task components was also significantly faster.

“Importantly, this faster performance was not associated with a worsening in accuracy,” ​stated the researchers.

“Acute administration of 800 mg of Neuravena appears to enhance the optimization of neural resources and positively influences cognitive performance in tasks associated with executive functions, processing speed and attention. Moreover, Neuravena prevents the deleterious effects of tiredness during task performance,” ​they added.

Areas for future study

The researchers called for future studies to use comprehensive neuropsychological assessments or additional tasks to “more exhaustively address the influence of Neuravena over cognitive performance”.

“Overall, some of the conclusions derived from the present study may be considered preliminary and in need of confirmation in future larger studies, but the set of results shed light on the potential effects of Neuravena in certain aspects of cognitive functioning in healthy individuals,”​ they added.

Source: Frontiers in Neuroscience
Published online, doi: 10.3389/fnins.2021.748188
“Effects of a Green Oat Herb Extract on Cognitive Performance and Neurophysiological Activity: A Randomized Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Study”
Authors: S. Martinez-Horta et al.

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