Put down that mug of coffee and pick up a cup of tea.
A new study conducted by researchers at the National University of Singapore suggests regular tea drinkers have better organized brains than their non-tea-drinking friends. The study, published in the scientific journal Aging, analyzed the neuroimaging data of 36 seniors and found those who drank tea regularly had less age-related decline in brain structure.
Past studies have shown drinking tea has health benefits, such as preventing cardiovascular disease. It’s also been shown to improve cognitive function. Assistant Professor Feng Lei, who led the research, said in a press release the new study explains why this is: improved brain organization.
“Take the analogy of road traffic as an example—consider brain regions as destinations, while the connections between brain regions are roads,” he said. “When a road system is better organised, the movement of vehicles and passengers is more efficient and uses less resources. Similarly, when the connections between brain regions are more structured, information processing can be performed more efficiently.”
Over three years, researchers gathered data about study subjects’ health, lifestyle and yes, tea-drinking habits. Participants also had to undergo MRIs and other tests.
From their results, researchers were able to conclude that people who drank either green tea, oolong tea, or black tea at least four times a week for around 25 years had more efficiently interconnected brain regions.
So get steeping, people.