SINGAPORE - Regular tea drinkers are less likely to get dementia in the long run, a National University of Singapore study of nearly 1,000 Chinese seniors has found.
Researchers found that overall, people who drank at least one cup of tea daily had a 61 per cent lower risk of developing cognitive impairment compared with those who did not.
Among those who were genetically predisposed to Alzheimer's disease, tea-drinking lowered their risk of getting the disease by as much as 86 per cent.
The type of tea - green, black or oolong - did not matter, and although the study involved only Chinese, its results should apply to other ethnic groups, said Assistant Professor Feng Lei, who is from the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine's psychological medicine department.
Prof Feng said that tea contains chemicals which have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which could help to protect the brain against dementia.
"The data from our study suggests that...daily tea drinking can reduce a person's risk of developing neurocognitive disorders in late life," he said.