Regular tea drinking protects against age related decline in brain, researchers find
Good News for Tea drinkers-Tea-drinking is supposed to be associated with stimulation and taking care of mental fatigue but researchers have found out that drinking tea could improve brain health and protect against age-related decline in the brain.
National University of Singapore (NUS) researchers have found that regular tea drinkers have better-organised brain regions – and this is associated with healthy cognitive function – compared to non-tea drinkers. The research team made this discovery after examining neuroimaging data of 36 older adults. The study has been published in the scientific journal Aging,
The researchers found that participants who consumed either green, oolong or black tea at least four times a week for about 25 years had brain regions that were “interconnected in a more efficient way” than those who did not drink tea. The research offers the first evidence of the positive contribution of tea drinking to brain structure and suggests that drinking tea regularly has a positive effect against age-related decline in brain organization.
“Our results offer the first evidence of the positive contribution of tea drinking to the brain structure, and suggest that drinking tea regularly has a protective effect against age-related decline in brain organization,” explained lead researcher Assistant Professor Feng Lei, from the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine’s Department of Psychological Medicine.
The research also involved Dr Junhua Li, from Essex’s School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering, and collaborators from the University of Cambridge.
The research team recruited 36 adults aged 60 and above, and gathered data about their health, lifestyle, and psychological well-being. The elderly participants also had to undergo neuropsychological tests and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
After analyzing the participants’ cognitive performance and imaging results, the research team found that individuals who consumed either green tea, oolong tea, or black tea at least four times a week for about 25 years had brain regions that were interconnected in a more efficient way.
“Take the analogy of road traffic as an example - consider brain regions as destinations, while the connections between brain regions are roads,” added Assistant Professor Prof Feng. “When a road system is better organized, the movement of vehicles and passengers is more efficient and uses less resources. Similarly, when the connections between brain regions are more structured, information processing can be performed more efficiently."