Neuroscience continues to provide fascinating facts about the positive effects on our most loved drinks and food items. In fact, items like coffee, chocolate, and tea tend to strengthen the brain and make it more powerful.
According to a study from the National Institute of Johns Hopkins University, a group of chemicals named methylxanthines found in tea, coffee, and dark chocolate dark “has clear effects on neuronal network activity, promotes sustained cognitive performance, and can protect neurons against dysfunction and death in animal models of stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease.”
The study also found that xanthine metabolites, a chemical produced when the brain processes caffeine “may also contribute to the beneficial effects of coffee, tea, and cacao on brain health.
In addition, a meta-analysis of 11 studies (11 articles on coffee, 8 articles about tea, and 4 studies for tea plus coffee) found that tea and coffee (and consequently cacao) could reduce the chance of developing brain cancer.
Researchers have discovered statistically significant protective effects of drinking coffee and the risk of developing brain cancer, particularly for Asian populations. However, the connection between brain cancer and drinking tea was not statistically significant as a whole study, but it was significant for American populations.
The results suggest that the higher consumption of coffee might be a factor in the less growth of brain cancer within Asian populations. The consumption of tea has an opposite relationship with the risk of developing brain cancer for American populations, but not in other populations.
A groundbreaking study from Okayama University showed that intake of coffee’s components, CA and CGA, enhanced the antioxidative capabilities of glial cells. It also slowed neurodegeneration induced by rotenone, both in the myenteric plexus as well as the brain. In simple terms, coffee can make the brain more flexible and resilient.
A number of studies also show the power of the brain-boosting properties of dark chocolate, which includes improved cognitive function, a lower risk of dementia, and enhanced efficiency in memory-related activities.
A review study has concluded that epicatechin is a flavanol that can be found in tea, cocoa berries, as well as other fruits, can improve cognitive performance, particularly when it comes to tasks that require memory executive function, executive functioning, and processing speed among older adults.
Therefore, in order to ensure your brain stays fit as you age you must be drinking tea, coffee, or cacao.