Early Online Version
Human Psychopharmacology: Clinical & Experimental
ANZSRC / FoR Code
420605 Preventative health care| 420899 Traditional, complementary and integrative medicine not elsewhere classified
Avondale Research Centre
Lifestyle Medicine and Health Research Centre
Reportable Items (HERDC/ERA)
To clarify the acute effect of caffeine on postexercise memory and learning performance.
Eight male slow‐to‐normal caffeine metabolizers, unhabituated to caffeine, were recruited into this randomized, double blind, placebo controlled, cross over study. Caffeine (150 mg) or the placebo was consumed one hour prior to two 30 min submaximal cycling sessions. Blood was collected at the beginning, after 20 and 35 min of exercise and 30 min postexercise. Mature brain‐derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and proBDNF concentrations were determined. Auditory memory was assessed immediately, 30 min and 24 h postexercise.
Participants averaged lower scores in every measure of learning and memory after ingesting caffeine compared to the placebo. Although the mean did not differ significantly for all measures, significant differences were found between the caffeine and placebo groups for the three indices; learning over time, short‐term index and retroactive interference. The ratio of serum mBDNF:proBDNF increased with exercise across all time points. No significant difference in the mBDNF:proBDNF ratio was observed between treatment groups.
The consumption of caffeine prior to exercise may impair an unhabituated individual's capacity to learn and recall auditory information postexercise. However it is yet to be elucidated whether this is through caffeine's modulating effects on brain BDNF.
Link to publisher version (DOI)
Berg, J., Cooper, J., Salonikas, C., Seyedsadjadi, N., & Grant, R. (2021). Acute caffeine intake in humans reduces post exercise performance in learning and memory. Human Psychopharmacology: Clinical & Experimental, 36(3), e2775. https://doi.org/10.1002/hup.2775