Participants who received cranberry supplementation demonstrated significant improvements in visual episodic memory—i.e., the ability to remember details of what something looks like—when compared to the control group.
Episodic memory is also associated with remembering the details of an event that happened earlier in one's life (think a first date, your wedding day, the birth of your child, etc.). This indicates that cranberries (and more specifically, polyphenols) play a large role in enhancing and sustaining memory later in life.
Researchers hypothesize these improvements in memory may be a result of increased blood flow to the entorhinal cortex—the gateway for information to enter and leave the hippocampus, where learning and memory formation occur.
On top of its positive memory effects, cranberry supplementation also significantly decreased LDL cholesterol. A decrease in LDL (often referred to as "bad" cholesterol) demonstrates vascular health support and is thus a potential component of improved blood flow and cognitive performance findings. Cerebral blood flow and vascular health are important (and in our opinion, often overlooked) contributors to optimizing cognitive function and overall brain health.*