Stress is a common phenomenon that helps us to be more stimulated and aware of our surroundings. It is known to be a potent modulator of brain function and cognition. A healthy dose of stress, for example, may motivate you to prepare and equip yourself for an upcoming challenge such as an examination, public speaking or a competition. Such moderate stress when properly handled, can increase alertness and helps brain circuits function more efficiently. In contrast, prolonged or excessive stress can cripple your mental ability and hinder your ability to perform. Such severe stress can cause impairment in memory and other cognitive functions. 1,2
Supplementation has been suggested as a method to prevent cognitive impairment during a stressful event. In a study that evaluated the effect of chicken essence on stress and cognition of human volunteers, a group of stressed medical students were randomly divided into three groups and given either chicken essence, placebo or a Carrageenan drink daily for two weeks.3
Comparison of mental and physical wellbeing, as well as attention and memory of the students, were assessed before and after the two weeks. After multiple tests, which included a 3-min memory test, comprehension and mental arithmetic tests, were conducted, the students who ingested the chicken essence fared significantly better than the other two groups of students.
A similar result was also observed from a study in 2008 through stress levels monitored by Electro-encephalogram or EEG. EEG is a device used to measure brain waves that also help the researcher to identify mental relaxation. This, in turn, can be interpreted as better concentration and organisation of thinking processes. 4
Chicken essence already has a reputation as an anti-fatigue food among its regular consumers. It is produced by a hot-water extraction process from chicken meat under high-pressure condition. It contains concentrated amounts of proteins, amino acids and peptides such as carnosine compared to a homemade traditional chicken soup. Due to this unique extraction process, it has been postulated that amino acids and bioactive peptides present in it are readily absorbed and act via a mechanism involving the chemicals in the brain that helps to inhibit anxiety and stress. This, in return, facilitates optimal cognitive functions in times of stress.
- Barker L. Who needs stress? We all do. Here’s why. The Sydney Morning Herald. Published 2018. Accessed December 14, 2018.
- Bisaz R, Conboy L, Sandi C. Learning under stress: A role for the neural cell adhesion molecule NCAM. Neurobiol Learn Mem. 2009;91(4):333-342. doi:10.1016/j.nlm.2008.11.003
- Azhar MZ, Syedsahiljamalulail S. Effect of taking chicken essence on stress and cognition of human volunteers. Malays J Nutr. 2003 Mar;9(1):19-29.
- Azhar MZ, Zubaidah JO, Norjan KON. Effect of taking chicken essence on cognitive functioning of normal stressed human volunters. Mal J Med Health Sci. 2008;4(1):57-68.