London: Drinking three to five cups of coffee a day could reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s by up to 20 per cent, scientists claim.
The study, released by the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee in UK, noted that a Mediterranean diet, consisting of fish, fresh fruit and vegetables, olive oil and red wine, has already been associated with a reduced risk for development of Alzheimer’s Disease.
The latest research suggests that compounds called polyphenols and caffeine can also be responsible for this protective effect – and these exact compounds are also found in high quantities in coffee, according to the study.
“The majority of human epidemiological studies suggest that regular coffee consumption over a lifetime is associated with a reduced risk of developing Alzheimer’s Disease, with an optimum protective effect occurring with three to five cups of coffee per day,” said Dr Arfran Ikram, an assistant professor in neuroepidemiology at Erasmus Medical Centre Rotterdam, who contributed to the study’s findings.
The study found that moderate coffee consumption was associated with a lower risk of developing dementia over a four year test period – by up to 20 per cent.
However, the effect diminished over a longer follow up period, ‘express.co.uk’ reported.
The researchers found caffeine helped prevent the formation of amyloid plaques and neurofibrulary tangles in the brain – two hallmarks of Alzheimer’s Disease.
Both caffeine and polyphenols reduced inflammation and decreased the deterioration of brain cells – especially in the hippocampus and cortex, areas of the brain involved in memory, researchers found.