Drinking tea may stave off cognitive decline

Drinking tea may stave off cognitive decline

Due to the high content of antioxidants, tea showed the ability to inhibit the risk of diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. However, its potential benefits to our health do not end there. Researchers recently discovered that regular tea drinking might be associated with a significant decrease in cognitive decline in elderly age, especially those with a genetic risk for Alzheimer’s disease.

New research suggests that regular consumption of tea helps reduce the possibility of deterioration of cognitive function in later life.

Tea is one of the most popular beverages in the world, and most often we reach for black tea. Possible benefits of regular consumption of tea are well documented, and a recent study published in The American Journal of Public Health binds them also with reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Earlier studies also suggest that drinking tea may have a beneficial effect on the brain, and green tea can have a positive influence on our memory.

The latest study held by Feng Lei and co-workers from the Department of Psychological Medicine at National University of Singapore (NUS) Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine aimed to establish a link between regular tea consumption and cognitive decline.

The results of the study were based on data analysis of 957 Chinese adults at age 55 and more. Researchers in the years 2003-2005 collected information on tea consumption in the research group, taking into account the amount, frequency, and type of tea consumed by participants. Subsequently, the cognitive functions of the participants were assessed every two years. During the analysis, 72 new cases of neurochemical disturbance were identified among the participants.

People who drink tea regularly reduced the risk of cognitive decline to 86%!

Individuals who drink tea regularly reduced by 50% risk of a decline in cognitive function compared to those who drank tea rarely or not at all. Interestingly, among adults with the APOE e4 gene – which is associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease, those who regularly drink tea have reduced the risk of cognitive decline by as much as 86%.

During the study, the researchers also take into account many other factors that can interfere with cognitive functions including, among others, the emergence of other states of health, social activity of respondents, physical activity and other lifestyle factors that could have an impact on cognitive function.

The researchers note that the benefits for cognitive function of the brain, in particular, been observed in people who consumed tea brewed from the leaves of tea such as green tea, black tea or leaf tea.

This study was not intended to determine the potential mechanisms that drinking tea can have on our brains. But as the author of the survey – Lei, however, shows, the potential benefits for cognitive function, are related to substances that are in the tea known as theaflavins, catechins, thearubigins and L-theanine.

These compounds have a strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effect, as well as numerous bioactive properties that can influence our brain’s protection against vascular damage and neurodegeneration. Understanding these extraordinary biological mechanisms is still very limited. Therefore it is necessary to carry out more research to help to get the final answer.

However, as can be deduced from recent studies, drinking tea is an affordable and truly enjoyable way to prevent dementia and many other diseases associated with the impaired cognitive function.

As follows from the analysis of the World Health Organization (WHO), up approximately 47.5 million people worldwide living with dementia, and every year, are diagnosed another 7.7 million new cases of the disease. According to estimates, this problem becomes bigger and bigger, and by 2050 the number of people who have dementia can increase up to 135.5 million.

A study by Lei and his team was based on an analysis of the particular group of an adult of Chinese people, but scientists believe that the effect of tea may be similar for other populations and can have a significant impact on the prevention of dementia.

The research related to the search for drugs that will allow for effective pharmacological treatment of neurodevelopmental disorders like dementia is so far at a very early stage, and currently available treatments are not enough. Consequently, tea as one of the most common beverages in the world can turn out to be a solution that will ease the risk of cognitive dysfunction in later life in a simple and very pleasant way.

Researchers are planning to conduct further studies on the relationship between tea and its effects on cognitive function, so we may soon be able to get an effective drug based on healthy bioactive tea compounds.

Spider venom can prevent damage to the brain that is associated with stroke

Spider venom can prevent damage to the brain that is associated with stroke

According to the latest study conducted by researchers from the Institute of Molecular Biology at the University of Queensland in Australia, a peptide derived from the venom of the spider can be the key to the prevention of brain damage caused by stroke. Scientists believe that the peptide Hi1a – found in the venom of the Australian funnel web spider, can affect the ion channels in the brain, which in turn can play a crucial role in the prevention of damage, which entails the occurrence of disease.

Professor Glenn King of the Institute of Molecular Biology at the University of Queensland, Australia, and his colleagues use in their research the chemistry of arthropod predators such as spiders, scorpions, and keels. Since the stroke is the second leading cause of death around the world, and at the same time provide extremely a considerable incidence of disability and the inability of many patients experiencing it, scientists are looking for ways to avoid the side effects caused by this incredibly complicated health problem.

The venom of a spider is a rich source of stable, natural peptides that strongly modulate the activity of ion channels and receptors of nerve. Hence the research conducted by scientists from the Institute of Molecular Biology of the University of Queensland in Australia, tend to use them as a way to prevent damage in the brain that occur as a result of a stroke.

According to statistics, an average of 795,000 people a year in the United States are affected by stroke, and 610,000 are cases of stroke for the first time in their lives. Therefore, a stroke is a highly common problem. This disease is also a leading cause of various kinds of dysfunctions and disabilities in the world, and as a result, more than half of those that survive a stroke at the age of 65 or older, experiences constraints mobility.

The most common side effect associated with stroke is paralysis or impairment of a function of one side of the body, but there are also other problems that are associated with changes in the brain and human behavior. So far, scientists not found an effective medication that will help in the brain damages caused by stroke, which is why Professor King and his colleagues claim that discovered by them peptide Hi1a, can be a very likely the perfect solution to this problem.

Hi1a peptide derived from the venom of the Australian funnel web spider effectively protects the brains of rats from damage caused by stroke.

Hi1a works by blocking the activity of the acid channel 1a or ASIC1a in the brain. This ion channel is the primary contributor to stroke damage after ischemic stroke – the most common type of stroke. The ischemic stroke is associated with blockage of the blood supply to the brain, and its result is that oxygen cannot reach it.

In a study carried out by researchers from the Institute of Molecular Biology at the University of Queensland in Australia, a small dose of the Hi1 peptide (or exactly two nanograms per kilogram of body weight) was administered to rats within 8 hours after a stroke. The research team discovered then that the venom of the spider has a protective effect on brain tissue, including all neurological and motor functions.

The peptide Hi1a also provides protection for the core regions of the brain, which is the point of the brain, that is most affected due to oxygen depletion. Severe hypoxia core of the brain is associated with the occurrence of disease, and the principle causes irreversible side effects, because at the time its cells very quickly die, making stroke is related to high mortality.

Researchers at the Institute of Molecular Biology at the University of Queensland in Australia, however, are convinced that their discovery could lead to new strategies for developing a drug that could be of great importance in the treatment of stroke. Its appearance can a significantly improve the quality of life of patients affected by this unpleasant health problem.

As it seems, that this discovery is a real chance to find an effective way to minimize the effects of brain damage after this serious health problem. It may be, therefore, a real opportunity to reduce damage to the brain (or even complete prevention) and to decrease the risk of disability among people who have been affected by these devastating harm.

Having children can affect the length of our lives?

Having children can affect the length of our lives?

Sleepless nights and stress, which often accompanies parents, may not sound like a way to live longer, but according to recent research, having children can add years to the lives of parents.

A team of researchers from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden recently said that people with the kids could live up to two years longer, compared to those with no children. Scientists say that already conducted earlier studies seemed to confirm this thesis, but they did not provide any specific reasons for this unusual relationship.

A small study conducted to verify how having children affect life expectancy, included an analysis of information on 704 481 men and 725 290 women who were born in the years 1911 to 1925, and reside in Sweden.

The team rated the test status of each person, the number of their children, as well as the sex of their descendants. The study determined how parenting influenced the lives of each of the individuals analyzed at the age of 60.

According to the researchers, having children can extend life by up to two years!

Compared to people who did not have children, people with at least one descendant reduced the risk of early death. According to individuals who were at 60 years of age, the researchers found that men with children live two years longer than men without children, while women with the kids, probably live about 1.5 years longer compared to women who do not have children.

The term results require consideration of some other factors which may affect the length of life, including among other things, the level of education and quality of life.

The researchers also found that the relationship between having a baby and a longer lifespan increase with age.

According to the survey, the later we are parents, the more likely we can gain the highest increase in life expectancy, and people with children, while not being in marriage derive greater joy of parenthood.

An exciting discovery of the study is that non-marriages – especially unmarried men, seem to enjoy the greatest joy of parenthood.

For example, an 85-year-old man who has at least one child, compared to a childless man, can live up to 1.2% as unmarried and 0.6% as married. Comparable data on women are respectively 0.9% and 0.8%.

The researchers speculate that the lack of a permanent relationship can influence that men with children not being in relationships informal or not having a wife, can rely more on their descendants in old age, which may explain the differences in risk of increased mortality comparing married and unmarried people.

Sex of children does not affect the length of life of parents

In contrast to earlier studies, a team of Swedish scientists found that the sex of children does not affect the life expectancy of their parents. The researchers suggest that discovered in previous studies the relationship between gender of children, and the extended period of parental life was flawed because it focused on social benefits that are associated with having a daughter.

In general, women have more social ties than men, and older childless people, especially men, seem to have much less social interaction compared to those with children. Older parents with daughters tend to have increased regular social contacts and get help from daughters if needed.

Researchers believe that greater support from offspring in later life may explain why people with children live longer compared to those without children. This statement, therefore, means that childless people, more often struggling with deficits of support at the end of life, which may affect its length.

One should not exclude individual selective elements as well as alternative explanations for this situation – parents with children show significantly healthier behaviors compared to childless ones.