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Study suggests coffee may prevent Alzheimer’s disease.

Espresso May Help Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease, Study‍ Finds

A ⁢new study published⁣ Wednesday shows that espresso ⁤could help prevent Alzheimer’s disease.

Researchers⁢ at the‍ University of ‌Verona in Italy found that compounds⁤ in espresso beverages, ⁤including caffeine, could slow⁤ or prevent⁤ the brain disorder.

The ​researchers ⁣concluded, “We have presented⁣ a large​ body‌ of‍ evidence that espresso coffee, ‌a widely consumed beverage, ‍is a source ⁤of natural‍ compounds showing beneficial properties ⁢in ameliorating … pathologies,” such as Alzheimer’s disease.

The researchers​ said that “numerous studies” showing that “coffee consumption‍ exerts ​a [protective] action against two ​of the most common neurodegenerative ⁢diseases, ‍i.e., Parkinson′s ⁢and Alzheimer′s,” prompted them to perform the study on espresso ⁤because of its‍ high concentration of coffee molecules.

While experts ⁣are ​still uncovering the ​processes that cause the diseases to‍ develop, most researchers have⁤ pointed ‍to a⁤ protein in⁢ the ⁢brain called tau, which helps ‍stabilize⁢ structures​ in⁣ that area of ⁤the human body. 

However,‍ when⁢ tau clumps in the brain, ⁢it interrupts the communication between nerves, causing memory loss,​ poor judgment, ​wandering,⁣ and personality ​changes — all symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.

The ⁣study used in-vitro and ‍cell culture tests and⁢ found that four compounds found in ‍espresso — caffeine, ​trigonelline, genistein,⁤ and theobromine‌ — reduced ‌the length of the tau⁤ fibers, preventing them from clumping.​ As‌ the⁣ concentration of ‍caffeine‍ increased, tau ⁤proteins ‍could not​ form ‍larger sheets, indicating ‍that the progress toward⁢ Alzheimer’s‍ might be slowed.

Although‌ more ‍research is needed, the researchers said their preliminary⁢ findings would “pave ⁢the way toward finding or​ designing other bioactive compounds ‍against … Alzheimer’s,” according to a press ​release.

6.2 million Americans have Alzheimer’s disease, and the disorder is the‌ fifth ⁤leading⁤ cause ⁢of death⁤ among ‌the⁢ elderly, claiming​ 134,242 American lives ⁤in 2020. 

The study was funded by the Italian Ministry of University ‍and ​Research and follows​ several ‍studies ⁢aimed ​at linking coffee consumption with reduced risk of‍ Alzheimer’s and‌ Parkinson’s ⁣diseases.

A ⁣2018 study by Canadian‍ researchers ⁢showed that‍ dark ⁢roast​ coffee is also beneficial for brain ⁣health ‍and could work to prevent both Alzheimer’s and ⁣Parkinson’s. 

However, Howard ​Bauchner, editor-in-chief​ of the JAMA⁢ peer-reviewed medical magazine, told USA Today⁣ at⁢ the time ⁢that coffee ​studies ​should be “taken with a ⁤sip ‍of skepticism.” He ⁣said that most coffee ⁢studies‍ are​ association studies, meaning ⁢they​ don’t necessarily prove that coffee is‌ the‍ reason for the‍ finding. 

Recent ‌advances ⁤in ⁤drug therapies ⁤have given Alzheimer’s patients ‍and their families hope. A‌ new medication, donanemab, reduced the risk⁣ of progressing from mild ⁤to ‍moderate dementia by 40% ‌in a⁤ recent study and ‍is ‍expected ‍to​ be ​approved by the ⁤FDA this ‌fall.

If approved, donanemab ​would⁢ join​ Lequembi and Aduhelm as ‌the third FDA-approved⁣ drug ⁢treatment ⁣for Alzheimer’s ‌disease.

Dr.​ Gil Rabinovici, the director of the⁤ University of California San Francisco’s Memory and Aging‌ Center, praised the advancements,⁢ saying ⁣they⁤ were “just the ⁣opening chapter⁣ in ⁤a new era​ of ‌molecular therapies for Alzheimer’s⁢ disease.”

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