There are a lot of good foods to eat if you want to be healthy, but a really important one to incorporate into your diet is the globe artichoke. Many people already know that artichokes have high nutritional value; they contain valuable nutrients like fiber, vitamin C, the dietary fiber inulin, and polyphenols. Additionally, artichokes offer antioxidants and prebiotics, which help grow beneficial microorganisms found in the stomach and intestines. Artichokes are a highly nutritional food, but you may be able to get more value from them if you supplement your diet with artichoke extract.
What is Artichoke Extract?
Artichoke extract, sometimes called artichoke leaf extract, has all the benefits of artichokes in a concentrated form. The scientific name for artichokes is Cynara cardunculus, which references one of the most important compounds within artichokes: cynarin. Cynarin is the primary ingredient responsible for many of the cognitive benefits people experience when taking artichoke extract. The extract works well with forskolin, and the two are usually included together when constructing a nootropic stack.
Artichokes also belong to a group of plants called adaptogens, or non-toxic plants that help the body resist chemical, physical, and biological stress. Use of adaptogens has been traced back to ancient China, but there are many still in use today, one of those being the artichoke.
Benefits of Artichoke Extract
Artichoke extract offers a wide range of benefits. Let’s start by looking at some of the nootropic benefits.
Taking artichoke extract may benefit your memory. Many nootropics offer the ability to support memory, but artichoke extract has some specific areas of your memory it can target. For example, artichoke extract may be able to help people with their short-term memory and may also help with memory consolidation (transferring short-term memories to long-term). At the same time, artichoke extract could help with memory recall, or the ability to remember specific things when called upon. Artichoke extract can play a role in all of these aspects, which makes it a valuable nootropic.
Other cognitive functions may benefit from taking artichoke extract. With the extract’s synergistic relationship with forskolin, it can increase cAMP levels, which in turn inhibits phosphodiesterase-4. This can impact cognition with improvements like increased attention, information processing, and memory. With these improvements, artichoke extract may help a person by enhancing practical reasoning, mathematical reasoning, and overall logic skills.
Improving memory and executive function are impressive benefits provided by artichoke extract, but artichoke extract can do so much more for you. Let’s look at some other benefits you can gain from taking an artichoke supplement.
Artichoke extract can have some definite benefits on a person’s digestive health. One study details how the extract may be able to help with indigestion. This is partly due to artichoke extract’s ability to speed up gut movement while also providing some support for absorbing vitamins and overall fat digestion.
Besides indigestion, artichoke extract may also help people who experience heartburn (dyspepsia), bloating, and nausea, which artichoke extract advocates pay particular attention to. Artichoke extract helps to balance gut flora, which may help treat some of the symptoms of indigestion.
Artichoke extract may also have an impact on a person’s cholesterol. In one double-blind placebo controlled trial, artichoke extract was found to reduce LDL-C (or bad cholesterol) in hypercholesterolemic adults who were otherwise healthy. This may be due to the extract’s antioxidant effects, or it may come from luteolin, an artichoke constituent which may fight the formation of cholesterol. Regardless, these findings are promising for what artichoke extract may be used for in the future.
At the same time, artichoke extract may be beneficial to lowering blood pressure. By consuming artichoke extract, a person may be able to stimulate activity of a special enzyme called eNOS, which is involved in the production of nitric oxide. Since nitric oxide widens blood vessels, which lowers blood pressure, it’s a benefit worth paying attention to.
Taking Artichoke Extract
If you choose to take artichoke extract as part of your supplements, you’ll be happy to know that it’s safe to use. Don’t overlook the notable benefits that artichoke extract has to offer. If you’re looking for something that could enhance your memory and cognition while also helping in many other ways, artichoke extract should be a part of your supplement regimen.