SATURDAY, April 24 (HealthDay News) -- Beneficial ingredients in green tea penetrate into the tissues of the eye and may help protect against glaucoma and other eye diseases, says a new study.
Researchers analyzed eye tissue from rats that drank green tea and found that the lens, retina and other tissues absorbed significant amounts of green tea catechins, which are antioxidants believed to protect the eye. Catechins include vitamin C, vitamin E, lutein and zeaxanthin.
The action of the green tea catechins in reducing harmful oxidative stress in the eyes lasted for up to 20 hours.
"Our results indicate that green tea consumption could benefit the eye against oxidative stress," wrote Chi Pui Pang of the department of ophthalmology and visual sciences at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong Eye Hospital, and colleagues.
The findings are published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.
Prior to this study, it wasn't known if the catechins in green tea traveled from the digestive system into the tissues of eyes.
The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about green tea.
TUESDAY, April 27 (HealthDay News) -- Eating a Mediterranean diet may help keep your brain healthy as you age, findings from an ongoing study show.
"This diet emphasizes vegetables, fruits, fish, olive oil, lower meat consumption, and moderate wine and non-refined grain intake," study author Dr. Christy Tangney, of Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, said in a news release from the American Society for Nutrition.
Rather than asking people to avoid certain foods, the study found data that "adults over age 65 should look to include more olive oil, legumes, nuts, and seeds in their diet in order to improve their recall times and other cognitive skills, such as identifying symbols and numbers," Tangney said.
The study included 4,000 adults aged 65 and older who were given a series of tests to examine their cognitive (or thinking) skills every three years over a 15-year period. Those who scored highest in following a Mediterranean diet were least likely to suffer cognitive decline, the study authors found.
"We [also] want older adults to remember that physical activity is an important part of maintaining cognitive skills," Tangney added.
The findings were slated to be presented Monday at the Experimental Biology 2010 meeting in Anaheim, Calif.
The AGS Foundation for Healthy Aging offers cognitive vitality tips for older adults.