Tea Benefits: A Cup a Day Keeps Alzheimer's Away

Fagjun | Published 2017-03-19 03:36

Drinking tea everyday reduces the risks of developing Alzheimer's in the elderly, especially those with a genetic predisposition toward the disease. A set of compounds in the tea benefits cognitive functions in the brain.

Alzheimer's is a neurodegenerative disease that can be quite devastating to the sufferers and their families. It can completely change a loved one into someone unrecognizable, and it can put patients in dangerous situations. Alzheimer's can make sufferers forget important memories, even people they love.

Some people are genetically predisposed to developing Alzheimer's. However, age is another important factor in the development of this disease. Therefore, these two important risk factors are unavoidable and irreversible. However, that doesn't mean that nothing can be done. Past studies have shown that leading a healthy lifestyle and taking care of one's heart can reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer's.

How Tea Benefits Alzheimer's Prevention

Tell grandma and grandpa to drink more tea.
[Photo by Lotte Meijer]

As of now, there is no cure for this condition. However, research is pushing towards delaying or even completely preventing the onset of Alzheimer's. What we know about Alzheimer's prevention for now is that maintaining a healthy lifestyle can possibly lower the risks of developing the disease.

A recent study has found that this healthy lifestyle should include the daily consumption of tea. Any type of the beverage, as long as it came from tea leaves, has neuroprotective capabilities that can protect cognitive functions from decline. According to the study, regular tea consumption can reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer's by 50% in older people. Meanwhile, for older people with a genetic predisposition to Alzheimer's, tea consumption can reduce the risks by 86%.

Researchers at the University of Singapore studied 957 elderly Chinese people over the age of 55. The participants gave information on their tea consumption from 2003 to 2005. The researchers then assessed the cognitive functions of the participants every two years until 2010.

Though the study had Chinese participants, the research say that the benefits of drinking tea are the same for other ethnicities.

Drinking tea benefits people because of natural compounds in the brew. These compounds—catechins, L-theanine, theaflavins, and thearubigins—have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. These properties, as well as others, have the capacity to protect the brain from damage and decline. They can also protect the brain from neurodegeneration, which causes diseases like Alzheimer's.

The researchers say that there is still a need for more studies into this matter. After all, neurodegenerative diseases are quite complex. However, what's clear is that drinking tea benefits aging brains and protects them from the ravages of neurodegenerative diseases.

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