Coffee may not be all that bad, according to a study done by Swedish and Danish researchers. The study, which was carried out for 21 years was done on about 1400 men and women. According to the study, the risk of age-related dementia was reduced by a whopping 65% in those who drank three to five cups of coffee per day. The researchers were unsure as to what exactly in coffee reduced the risks, but they believe that it may have something to do with the antioxidants contained in the coffee.
Protection for the Brain Cells
Another study that was done showed that coffee has the ability to strengthen the blood brain barrier (BBB). This barrier is responsible for protecting the brain cells from toxins that circulate around the brain.
In addition, the powerful antioxidants found in coffee help to wash away the toxins around the brain, which naturally helps to sharpen the mind. Studies have shown that when toxins come in contact with the brain cells, they tend to die off faster. If more cells die than what the body is able to restore, it results in memory loss, Alzheimer’s and age-related dementia.
Helps Maintain a Healthy Weight
Another way that coffee may help to prevent age-related dementia is by helping to maintain a healthy weight. Researchers have discovered that those with a healthy weight are less likely to develop dementia or other diseases of the mind as they age.
In order for the brain to function at its best it needs a healthy blood supply, not only to provide the brain with proper nutrients, but to remove toxins and other waste material as well. If the body is overweight, then there are usually excess fat cells floating around the body. This often leads to high cholesterol, which can build up along the walls of the blood vessels resulting in a narrow passageway for the blood to flow through. Narrowed blood vessels slow down the blood flow to the brain, depriving it of essential nutrients and oxygen. Eventually this results in poor brain cell development and premature cell death, which leads to dementia and other disorders of the brain.
So where does coffee fit in? First of all, drinking coffee can help to prevent individuals from reaching for high sugary drinks such as sodas, which are sure to put the weight on. Second, coffee helps to increase the adiponectin in the blood, which can help the body to burn more unwanted fat cells as opposed to muscle cells. Muscle cells in turn help to burn even more fat cells. Thus coffee can help to keep the weight down, which in turn can help to improve the memory.
Keep in mind however, that coffee is an addictive drug, and should not be used as a sole method to prevent age-related dementia. For some the side effects of coffee may not be worth the health benefits that coffee has to offer. A healthy diet and regular exercise can be just as effective in helping to ward off age-related dementia.