October 23, 2014
Science Daily/University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston
For people 60 and older who do not have dementia, light alcohol consumption during late life is associated with higher episodic memory -- the ability to recall memories of events -- researchers report.
Moderate alcohol consumption was also linked with a larger volume in the hippocampus, a brain region critical for episodic memory. The relationship between light alcohol consumption and episodic memory goes away if hippocampal volume is factored in, providing new evidence that hippocampal functioning is the critical factor in these improvements.
Findings from animal studies suggest that moderate alcohol consumption may contribute to preserved hippocampal volume by promoting generation of new nerve cells in the hippocampus. In addition, exposing the brain to moderate amounts of alcohol may increase the release of brain chemicals involved with cognitive, or information processing, functions.
Science Daily/SOURCE :http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/10/141023092031.htm