Dementia: tea and wine could reduce risk – ‘exciting’ new study

Dementia describes a group of symptoms associated with a continuing decline in brain function. Contrary to popular opinion, it is not a direct result of aging, rather it is triggered by a number of different diseases, Alzheimer’s being the most common. Fortunately, your diet could help erect a barrier against the mind-stealing condition. New research suggests Britain’s favorites are ready for the job.

Characterized by its pleasant taste, black tea sweetened with milk is the go-to comfort drink for millions of Britons. And wine is undoubtedly another nation’s favorite.

The research, published in the journal Neurology, makes the case for adding these drinks to your menu.

The study suggests that something as simple as drinking could help stave off dementia.

The reason these completely different drinks can curb the state of mind flight comes down to their antioxidant content.

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People who get more antioxidant flavonols from their diets may have slower memory decline, the researchers wrote.

In case you didn’t know, flavonols describe a type of flavonoid, a group of phytochemicals found in plant pigments known to have beneficial health effects.

Plus, you can still enjoy the brain protection benefits even if you don’t like wine and tea.

Contained in fruits and vegetables, flavonols are packed into leafy vegetables, onions, apples, berries, cherries, soy, citrus fruits and more.


Study author Thomas M. Holland said, “It is exciting that our study shows that making specific food choices can lead to slower cognitive decline.

“Something as simple as eating more fruits and vegetables and drinking more tea is an easy way for people to take an active role in maintaining their brain health.”

The researchers arrived at these results by examining 961 people with an average age of 81 without dementia.

Study participants had to complete a questionnaire each year detailing how often they ate certain foods and complete cognitive and memory tests, including recalling lists of words, memorizing numbers and putting them in the correct order .

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The study also broke down the flavonol classes into four constituents – kaempferol, quercetin, myricetin and isorhamnetin – the former promising the slowest rate of cognitive decline.

Foods high in this flavonol include kale, beans, tea, spinach, and broccoli. This was followed by myricetin found in the tastes of tea, wine, kale, oranges and tomatoes.

Holland added that the research simply shows a link between higher amounts of dietary flavonols and slower cognitive decline, but does not prove that flavonols are the direct cause.

Other limitations of the study included the self-reported nature of the food frequency questionnaire, which suggests that some people may not accurately remember what they ate.

Dementia: tea and wine could reduce risk – ‘exciting’ new study

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