Ginkgo biloba extract is a popular herbal approach to increase brain power. Use 60 to 120 mg of standardized extract (ie, 24% ginkgo flavonglycosides), one to two times a day. Do not take ginkgo with blood thinners. Traditionally used to improve memory, learning and concentration in Ayurvedic medicine , bacopa is another popular herbal brain booster. Emerging clinical evidence is validating its benefits. In one study, 46 healthy volunteers (aged 18 to 60) were divided into treatment and placebo groups. Participants received 300 mg a day of a bacopa extract. At the end of the 12-week study, there was a significant improvement in verbal learning, memory and information processing in the bacopa group compared to the placebo group.
Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is a recently recognized medical condition that involves the stage between normal age-related cognitive decline and more severe decline associated with dementia. People with MCI may have problems with memory, language, reasoning and judgment that are generally not serious enough to cause significant problems in their daily lives and usual activities.
MCI may increase the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease or some form of dementia, but not everyone with MCI develops dementia. As MCI is a new diagnosis and affects up to 42% of the elderly, pharmaceutical companies have been busy formulating drugs to take advantage of market share. Alzheimer's drugs known as "cognitive boosters" are becoming popular in the treatment of MCI, however, despite their popularity, the drugs are not showing any benefit. And yet, these drugs have the potential to cause significant side effects. One of these drugs, tacrine (Cognex), has already been removed from the market.