Green Tea and Alzheimer's Disease

Protect Your Brain Health with Green Tea

Recent research has uncovered one of the most exciting benefits of green tea yet–its power to prevent, and possibly reverse the effects of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia!

One study found a 54% reduction in the risk of developing cognitive decline. Investigations revealed that green tea Catechin antioxidants, the most potent beneficial compound in green tea, protect against cognitive and memory impairments associated with aging.

How does Green Tea protect your brain?

EGCG is the most potent and plentiful Catechin Polyphenol in green tea. It provides antioxidant activity. Scientists discovered EGCG is a powerful neuro protector against oxidative stress-induced cell death.

Studies show that EGCG protects the brain in many other ways, in addition to the protection that antioxidant activity offers.

Scientists discovered Amyloids in the brain is the root of Alzheimer’s diseases.  Amyloids are proteins that stick together and forms fibrils. Amyloids have been linked to the development of various diseases. Amyloid fibrils in the brain cause neuron death and Alzheimer’s cognitive symptoms.

Green Tea helps battle against Alzheimer’s disease in each critical level:

  • Interfering formation of Amyloid plaques
  • Breaking down existing Amyloid plaques by disrupting early-stage and late-stage aggregation processes
  • Preventing Amyloid plaques from binding to neuronal prions
  • Detoxifying Amyloid fibrils by changing them into shapes that are not toxic to neurons

Amyloids induce mitochondrial dysfunction which is also considered to play a role in the onset and progression of Alzheimer’s disease.  Therefore, treatments targeted to improve mitochondrial function could be beneficial. Mitochondria are organelles that act as a power plant of the cell by generating energy from metabolic process. Studies found EGCG prevents and restores mitochondrial dysfunction.

As though this is not enough good news, lab tests are showing that EGCG not only can prevent the symptoms, also triggers the production of new hippocampus neurons–reversing the effects of Alzheimer’s!  Hippocampus is responsible for long-term memory and emotional responses. Adult hippocampal neurogenesis is critical in adult brain function. Scientists who study neurodegenerative diseases have observed strong evidence that EGCG enhances adult hippocampal neurogenesis.

“Shellea’s Matcha Story”

Recently, a friend of ours, Shellea, lost her husband, Bob, after an 8 year battle against Alzheimer’s disease. Bob fell and hit his head hard on the floor, and he lost consciousness. He stayed unconscious for 12 days and passed away.

This tragic news was surprising to us because he was showing “sudden improvement” on his symptoms for the past several months. Bob was in a better mood, capable to walk by himself, willing to communicate by writing and saying a few words.  His caregivers and physical therapists were amazed by these drastic improvements. Shelley said, “They asked me what I was feeding him.”

Just several days before the astonishing transformation occurred, Shelley had started to give at least one cup of Edible Green Decaf each day.  Earlier, she had her health issues and she took on matcha.  She experienced a tremendous relief from her symptoms immediately. It didn’t take long for her to decide to do the same for her husband.

Shellea said excitedly, “Bob is not a tea person, but he liked it. He asked me if I made this tea and said he liked it.”  “He preferred the tea over sweet dessert.  He loved sweets and used to enjoy them every day.  But he pushes them away and just enjoys the tea.  He must be feeling good when he drinks it.”

Later, Shellea shared with me how living with him as an Alzheimer’s disease patient for 8 years affected her perception of herself.  He was angry at her for not being able to do things.  He blamed her for causes of his frustration.  He was skeptical if she was his wife. After she was kept blamed for 8 years, her soul is filled with self-doubt and guilt toward him. His little smile and positive words made for her when she gave him a cup of tea must have meant a lot for her.

Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in America. One in three seniors dies with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia. The number of people living with dementia is predicted to triple by 2050. Shellea says, “There is a lot to sort out.  It will take a while to process.” She is still fighting against the disease even though the days to take care of him is over. Good news is she is still drinking matcha every day.  Hopefully, she will be freed from the haunting questions and uncertainty soon–maybe through touting how a single cup of green tea a day could help prevent and treat this dreadful disease.

Learn more about green tea health benefits

Find the best green tea for you

Browse green tea products

drink green tea
Resources

Rezai-Zadeh K, Shytle D, Sun N, Mori T, Hou H, Jeanniton D, Ehrhart J, Townsend K, Zeng J, Morgan D, Hardy J, Town T, Tan J. Green tea epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) modulates amyloid precursor protein cleavage 

Sinha S, Du Z, Maiti P, et al. Comparison of three amyloid assembly inhibitors: the sugar scyllo-inositol, the polyphenol epigallocatechin gallate, and the molecular tweezer CLR01. ACS Chem Neurosci. 2012 Jun 20;3(6):451-8.

 

Bieschke J. Natural compounds may open new routes to treatment of amyloid diseases. Neurotherapeutics. 2013 Jul;10(3):429-39.

 

Okello EJ, McDougall GJ, Kumar S, Seal CJ. In vitro protective effects of colon-available extract of Camellia sinensis (tea) against hydrogen peroxide and beta-amyloid (Aβ (1-42)) induced cytotoxicity in differentiated PC12 cells. Phytomedicine. 2011 Jun 15;18(8-9):691-6.

 

Haque AM, Hashimoto M, Katakura M, Hara Y, Shido O. Green tea catechins prevent cognitive deficits caused by Abeta1-40 in rats. J Nutr Biochem. 2008 Sep; 19(9):619-26.

 

Dragicevic N, Smith A, Lin X, et al. Green tea epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) and other flavonoids reduce Alzheimer’s amyloid-induced mitochondrial dysfunction. J Alzheimers Dis. 2011;26(3):507-21.

 

He Y, Cui J, Lee JC, et al. Prolonged exposure of cortical neurons to oligomeric amyloid-beta impairs NMDA receptor function via NADPH oxidase-mediated ROS production: protective effect of green tea (-)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate. ASN Neuro. 2011;3(1):e00050.

 

Hyung SJ, DeToma AS, Brender JR, et al. Insights into antiamyloidogenic properties of the green tea extract (-)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate toward metal-associated amyloid-beta species. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2013 Mar 5; 110(10):3743-8.

 

Rushworth JV, Griffiths HH, Watt NT, Hooper NM. Prion protein-mediated toxicity of amyloid-beta oligomers requires lipid rafts and the transmembrane LRP1. J Biol Chem. 2013 Mar 29; 288(13):8935-51.

 

Wang Y, Li M, Xu X, Song M, Tao H, Bai Y. Green tea epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) promotes neural progenitor cell proliferation and sonic hedgehog pathway activation during adult hippocampal neurogenesis. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2012 Aug;56(8):1292-303.