Elderly Green Tea Drinkers at a Lower Risk for Depression

According to an article by Laurie Barclay, MD, entitled Green Tea Drinking in Elderly Linked to Lower Risk for Depression, more frequent consumption of green tea is associated with a lower risk of depression in older adults.  These findings are based on a cross-sectional study published in the December 2009 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

According to researchers, green tea has many benefits including anti-stress response and anti-inflammatory effects.  The study involved 1058 community-dwelling Japanese people aged 70 or older.  A questionnaire was used to determine green tea intake and the 30-item Geriatric Depression Scale was used to evaluate depressive symptoms.

After reading the article thoroughly, I am convinced that more research needs to be done before any conclusions can be drawn about cause and effect.  The authors of the study concur, stating that a prospective study or randomized trials should be done to clarify causality.  I would say this study is a good start on which to design further studies to determine if green tea can actually lower the depression risk for the elderly.

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