Ellagic acid is a phytochemical antioxidant found in a number of foods including walnuts and berries. Ellagic acid belongs to the polyphenol group of phytochemicals and a number of studies have shown positive health effects from consumption of ellagic acid and ellagic acid containing foods. These benefits stem largely from the ability of ellagic acid to act as an antioxidant in humans and animals. This antioxidant effect allows ellagic acid to be effective at preventing inflammation, and this may explain its neuroprotective effects. In particular, ellagic acid may be protective of dementias such as Alzheimer’s disease due to the way it modulates brain function, by for example, inhibiting the β-secretase enzyme that may play a role in the development of brain abnormalities. Ellagic acid may prevent neuronal loss due to its antioxidant and antiinflammatory action, and this may also confer protective effects against the development of mood disorders such as anxiety and depression.
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