September 06, 2012Green tea has been used as a medicine for thousands of years, its uses have ranged from lowering blood pressure to preventing cancer. It is considered superior to black tea because of the different method of processing which causes black to to ferment. Green tea does not go through this fermentation process, which allows it to maintain the maximum amount of antioxidants and poly-phenols, the source of its many benefits. Now a new benefit has been ascribed to green tea! A report published in Molecular Nutrition & Food Research found that it may also benefit memory and spatial awareness! Scientists looked at EGCG (epigallocatechin-3 gallate), an organic chemical and one of the main ingredients in green tea. EGCG is an anti-oxidant that researchers believe may protect against degenerative diseases that develop as we age. They found that ECGC helps to promote the making of neural progenitor cells, which are similar to stem cells and can turn into many different kinds of cells. Using mice, they wanted to demonstrate whether or not the rise in the production of cells was beneficial to spatial learning or memory. Tests were run on two groups of mice, one which had been given ECGC and a control group, which was not given the supplement. The mice were trained for three days to find a visible platform in their maze, then they were trained to find a hidden platform. Mice that were given ECGC found the hidden platform faster than the ones that were not, indicating that EGCG boosted memory and learning, helping the mice to recognize objects and improve spatial memory. We already know that there are a lot of reasons to drink green tea:
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