If staying mentally fit is your cup of tea, then you should definitely introduce some tea in your daily routine, suggests a new longitudinal study from the Department of Psychological Medicine at National University of Singapore’s (NUS) Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine.
Involving 957 55-year-old or older Chinese seniors, the team led by Assistant Professor Feng Lei discovered that introducing tea consumption as a daily habit reduces the risk of dementia by 50% and the risk of cognitive impairment of those who with a genetically-predisposed risk of Alzheimer’s by 86%.
The team discovered that the tea brewed from leaves, such as green, oolong, or black tea, has neuroprotective properties that serve to prevent neurocognitive disorders that may occur later in life.
He attributes the long-term effects of drinking tea to the bioactive compounds found in the 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.”
This means that introducing this inexpensive habit into your daily rituals has the potential of reducing the risk of developing neurocognitive disorders that many people tend to suffer from at a later age.
The team spent seven years analyzing the tea-drinking participants in the study and comparing them to those who didn’t drink tea. During this period, they collected information on their tea-drinking habits, lifestyles, medical conditions, social and physical activities. They also assessed their cognitive function every two years.
Their next step is to investigate and test the effects of the tea’s bioactive compounds more thoroughly, by assigning experimental and control groups to eliminate any biased results.
Their discovery is just another excuse to pour yourself a cup of warm tea and say cheers to keeping your brain healthy.
Source: NUS News