Green tea could protect the brain against Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia, say scientists.
The drink, which originated in ancient China, may also play a vital role in guarding against cancer, their study suggests. Scientists at Newcastle University set out to discover whether the protective properties of the tea – previously shown to be present in the freshly brewed form – are still active once it has been digested.Dr Ed Okello, from the university, said: ‘What was really exciting was that we found when green tea is digested, the resulting chemicals are actually more effective against key triggers of Alzheimer’s. The digested compounds also had anti-cancer properties, significantly slowing down the growth of tumour cells which we were using in our experiments.’
Two compounds are known to play a significant role in the development of Alzheimer’s – hydrogen peroxide and a protein known as beta-amyloid.