accounting for nearly 60-70% of cases. People develop dementia due to both genetic and environmental factors, but there are preventative measures to take. Healthy choices in your 40s may make a significant difference in your
The new study has looked into the protective effects of a commonly consumed beverage on brain function. Read on and learn about the drink that could reduce the risk of developing dementia.
Several studies have earlier probed to find how certain foods, drinks, and lifestyle factors contribute to individual dementia risk. A study in 2017 suggested that consuming
every day could increase dementia risk three times. In addition, researchers also recently found that people who started heavy drinking alcohol later in their life may already have dementia.
After knowing these things, you might think of sticking to water from now onwards, but another study shows a popular beverage that could protect you from dementia.
Tea Could be the Gamechanger in Dementia
The study included 377,592 participants from the UK Biobank (UKB), who had a mean age of 58.49 years. During the follow-up period of 9 years, 5,122 participants developed dementia.
Information about tea consumption was collected by asking how many cups of tea they drank each day (including black and green tea) via a touchscreen questionnaire, with approximately 85.1% reported consuming tea.
Based on the responses, participants were divided into:
- One to two cups a day
- Three to four cups a day
- Seven to eight cups a day
- Nine or more cups a day
Researchers found a “U-shaped association” between cups of tea and dementia risk, and six cups a day showed the most potent protective effect against dementia. This means the ideal amount to cut down the dementia risk was six cups of tea daily.
They did not observe a notable difference in dementia risk between those who consumed more than six cups of tea and those who did not drink tea.
These findings support tea consumption as a potentially modifiable lifestyle factor, which means you can make changes to control dementia risk.
Nutrition Power of Tea
The protective effects of tea may come from the antioxidative property of tea (partially due to caffeine), and the potential to reduce inflammation in the brain, which plays a major role in dementia progression. The amino acid l-theanine extracted from tea leaves has also proven to improve brain function.
The study also has some limitations, such as tea consumption may have changed throughout the follow-up period, as habits were only reported at the start of the study. Just asking how many “cups” participants drank did not need a universal measurement, and no information was collected on the type of tea, which researchers might explore in future research.
If you enjoy a cup of tea daily, then start your day with a cup of tea or have a relaxing cup of tea in the evening to wind up your day. Learning this practice could benefit your brain function and overall health as you age.
- Dementia – (https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/dementia)
- Sugar- and artificially-sweetened beverages and the risks of incident stroke and dementia: A prospective cohort study – (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5405737/)
- Tea consumption and risk of incident dementia: A prospective cohort study of 377 592 UK Biobank participants – (https://www.nature.com/articles/s41398-022-01923-z)
- Tea – (https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/food-features/tea/)
- Dementia Prevention: Reduce Your Risk, Starting Now – (https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/dementia/dementia-prevention-reduce-your-risk)
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