Drinking Tea Can Be Good for Brain Health
A cup of tea a day may be just what the doctor ordered for lifelong brain health. And this may be especially so for those who are genetically predisposed to debilitating Alzheimer’s disease.
This is according to a recent study led by Assistant Professor Feng Lei from the Department of Psychological Medicine at the National University of Singapore. The study involving 957 Chinese seniors aged 55 years or older found that regular consumption of tea lowers the risk of cognitive decline in the elderly by 50%. The study also found that APOE e4 gene carriers who are at risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease may experience a reduction in cognitive impairment risk by as much as 86%.
Researchers also discovered that the neuroprotective role of tea consumption on cognitive function is not limited to a particular type of tea. As long the tea is brewed from tea leaves, such as green, black, or oolong tea, they all have the same protective effect.
Tea is one of the most popular beverages in the United States. In 2015, more than 3.6 billion gallons of tea were consumed, with black tea being the most popular.
What makes tea so effective for good brain health?
According to Assistant Professor Feng, “Based on current knowledge, this long term benefit of tea consumption is due to the bioactive compounds in tea leaves, such as catechins, theaflavins, thearubigins and L-theanine. These compounds exhibit anti-inflammatory and antioxidant potential and other bioactive properties that may protect the brain from vascular damage and neurodegeneration. Our understanding of the detailed biological mechanisms is still very limited so we do need more research to find out definitive answers.”
The research team published their findings in scientific journal The Journal of Nutrition, Health & Aging in December 2016.
Tea time, anyone?
Until next time…
Yours in health,