The herbal tea that sharpens memory on foggy cycle days

My Hormonology

The herbal tea that sharpens memory on foggy cycle days


It’s normal to feel a little mentally foggy at certain points in your menstrual cycle. One of these phase is your Week 3 (the 8 days following ovulation) due to rising progesterone–a sedating hormone that can tire out your brain. Another is your premenstrual Week 4 due to plunging estrogen, which can sap brainpower.

Fortunately, there are lots of study-backed ways to overcome this hormonal challenge and rev your brainpower right back up. One of these  is sipping peppermint tea.

A study from the U.K.’s Northumbria University found that drinking one cup of this caffeine-free herbal brew temporarily improves long-term memory (needed to recall information you learned awhile ago) and working memory (the kind needed to remember multiple pieces of information right now).(1)

How’s it work? Compounds in peppermint—such as menthol and rosmarinic acid—trigger alertness and increase levels of the memory-sharpening neurotransmitter acetylcholine in the brain, the researchers say.

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(1) Mark Moss, et al. “Acute consumption of Peppermint and Chamomile teas produce contrasting effects on cognition and mood in healthy young adults,” Plant Science Today, 3 (2016): 327-336

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