Can coffee help reduce the risk of dementia or Alzheimer's disease?
Dementia /Alzheimer's disease is a condition that attacks the brain function, affects memory and alters logical capacity to the point that simple daily tasks become almost impossible. A combination of factors including age, genetic inheritance, diet, and environment is likely to be responsible for this heartbreaking disease, since there has been no specific proven cause.
According to the April publication of Tufts Newsletter, a new study by Finnish and Swedish researchers reported that people who drink between three to five cups of coffee a day in midlife could be cutting their risk of dementia/Alzheimer's disease by 65 percent. Researchers followed over 1,000 people. During that time, 61 participants developed dementia, 48 with Alzheimer's disease. After controlling for recurrent socioeconomic and health factors, including high cholesterol and high blood pressure, the scientists found that the subjects who had reported drinking three to five cups of coffee daily were 65 percent less likely to have developed dementia, compared with those who drank two cups or less. There were not enough people who drank more than five cups to depict statistically significant conclusions, but researchers said they too, were at reduced risk of dementia.
Although it is unclear exactly how moderate coffee drinking helps delay or avoid these diseases, studies have shown that coffee contains strong antioxidants, which are known to counter them. Some studies have also shown that coffee helps protect the nervous system, which can also protect against dementia. Due to the fact that the average American drinks more than three and half cups of coffee daily, these results can have imperative implications for the prevention or delaying the onset of dementia/Alzheimer's disease.
Tanya Zuckerbrot, MS, RD is a nutritionist and founder of
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