ABSTRACT

Glucose has been shown to have a memory facilitating effect. The goal of this study is to test if sucrose, a carbohydrate consumed on a daily basis, would also enhance memory in male college students. Subjects were given either a sucrose (50 g) or a placebo drink (50.6 mg of saccharine). Subjects filled the Stress Indicator Questionnaire that measures five stress indicators: physical, sleep, behavioral, emotional, and personal habits. A slideshow of 52 IAPS pictures were then shown to the subjects followed by immediate and delayed recall tests and a recognition test. Even though we found no direct effect of sucrose on memory, the results showed that high fasting blood glucose level is associated with lower recognition memory. Furthermore, high sleep stress enhanced memory for immediate recall. On the other hand, high behavioral stress was detrimental for delayed recall and recognition. The differential effects of the different indicators of stress on memory is discussed in relation to changes in cortisol levels that may result in modulation of blood glucose levels which in turn can affect memory. The results of this study shed light on the effect of different types of stress and fasting glucose levels on memory.

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