Health & Wellness

Tea Keeps Your Brain in Shape

Drinking tea regularly helps to protect your brain from the effects of aging

You’ve probably heard that drinking green tea is good for your health. Now a study has shown that those who drink green, oolong, or black tea regularly have better cognitive functioning than those who don’t.

Researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS) followed a group of 36 adults aged 60 or older over three years and found those who drank tea at least four times a week for 25 years or more had stronger connections between the different regions in their brain. The study results were published in the scientific journal Aging.

“Take the analogy of road traffic as an example—consider brain regions as destinations, while the connections between brain regions are roads. When a road system is better organized, the movement of vehicles and passengers is more efficient and uses fewer resources,” said Feng Lei of the Department of Psychological Medicine at the NUS in a statement. “Similarly, when the connections between brain regions are more structured, information processing can be performed more efficiently.”

The findings in this study build upon Feng’s prior research that found that daily tea drinkers can reduce their risk for cognitive decline in older age by 50%.

“Our results […] suggest that drinking tea regularly has a protective effect against age-related decline in brain organization,” he said. “Our current results relating to brain network indirectly support our previous findings by showing that the positive effects of regular tea drinking are the result of improved brain organization brought about by preventing disruption to interregional connections.”

Past studies have shown that drinking tea helps to prevent cardiovascular disease and promotes alertness and calm, while at the same time improving mood.

Photo: iStock/GeorgeDolgikh.