Coffee – a natural ally of brain health
Coffee is one of the favorite drinks of Germans. Awakens energies, motivates and stimulates. What was previously unknown: coffee protects the brain against dementias such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. The stronger the roast beans are, the more effective the protective function is, reports a Canadian research team in a recent study.
Unlike the previous cases, there are more and more benefits to the consumption of coffee to drink. Researchers at the Canadian Krembil Research Institute in Toronto recently found that coffee consumption reduces the likelihood of developing dementias such as Alzheimer's or Parkinson's. For the protective effect, in particular the compounds appear to be responsible, which arise during the roasting process of coffee beans. The results of the study were recently published in the "Frontiers in Neuroscience" magazine.
Cafe better than its reputation
Is coffee healthy or harmful? Numerous studies have arisen against this issue in recent years. In the past, coffee was considered quite unhealthy because it was said to have had a dehydrating effect that is now considered refuted. In fact, coffee is healthier than most people. It is soothing and stimulating at the same time and it is assumed that it prevents type II diabetes and heart disease. The latest research also suggests that coffee can protect our brain from neurodegenerative diseases. However, high coffee consumption can also contribute to hyperacidity and thus promote stomach and reflux problems.
The roast brings the protective effect
A Canadian scientific team has shown that drinking certain coffee can be beneficial for brain health. But how is it that popular hot drink supports cognitive function? The researchers found the basis of protection mechanisms not in caffeine, but in compounds released during roasting coffee beans.
Even effect for decaffeinated coffee
A coffee with roasted coffee was also examined, as well as a strong barbeque grill and coffee with toasted coffee. The team found that roasted varieties, regardless of caffeine, have a stronger protective effect. In subsequent tests, a series of compounds, called phenylindanes, crystallized as responsible for the positive effect. These compounds are formed during the process of baking and give coffee to its typically bitter flavor.
How do roasted compounds protect our brains?
According to the researchers, roasted coffee compounds say that less toxic proteins can bind to the brain. These so-called tau and beta-amyloid proteins are deposited as a plaque in the brain and are considered to trigger neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.
The long roasting process is crucial
As the research team highlights, a long roasting time is, in particular, responsible for the formation of protective compounds. It does not matter if coffee is decaffeinated or not. The strongest protective effect on the brain is, therefore, based on dark roasted varieties.
Mother Nature is the best pharmacy
The Canadian team is excited about the discovery, especially because the protective effect comes from a completely natural process. This does not require synthesis in the laboratory and causes the drug to be so easy to produce and is available. "Mother nature is a pharmacy much better than us," explains Dr. Ross Mancini, one of the main study scientists, in a press release on the results of the study.
Now is a cure for dementia?
"The purpose of this study was to show that there are actually components in coffee that are useful to prevent cognitive impairment," concludes Mancini. These processes are very interesting, but it is still early to declare coffee as a cure, warns the expert. (VB)