Tea is one of the most widely consumed beverages in the world. Do you know that drinking a cup of tea a day, whether is it green, black or oolong tea, could reduce the risk for dementia by 50%? Regular tea drinkers are less likely to get dementia compared with those coffee lovers.
A new study by Professor Feng, suggests that a simple and inexpensive lifestyle measure such as daily tea drinking can reduce a person’s risk of developing neurocognitive disorders in late life.
The research team also discovered that the neuroprotective role of tea consumption on cognitive function is not limited to a particular type of tea – so long as the tea is brewed from tea leaves, such as green, black or oolong tea.
Professor Feng, who is from the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine’s psychological medicine department, studied nearly 1,000 Singaporean Chinese seniors from 2003 to 2010.
“While the study was conducted on Chinese elderly, the results could apply to other races as well. Our findings have important implication for dementia prevention. Despite high quality drug trials, effective pharmacological therapy for neurocognitive disorders such as dementia remains elusive and current prevention strategies are far from satisfactory. Tea is one of the most widely beverages in the world. The data from our study suggests that a simple and inexpensive lifestyle measure such as daily tea drinking can reduce a person’s risk of developing neurocognitive disorders in late life,” explained Professor Feng.
He added that the long term benefit of tea consumption is due to the bioactive components 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 neruodegneration.
In this study, tea consumption information were collected from the participants, who are community-living elderly, from 2003 to 2005. At regular intervals of two years, these seniors were assessed on their cognitive function using standardised tools until 2010. Information on lifestyles, medical conditions, physical and social activities were also collected. Those potential confounding factors were carefully controlled in statistical models to ensure the robustness of the findings.
The study was published in NUS News.
Please feel free to comment below if you have any thoughts to share on other benefits of tea drinking.