Caffeine has gotten a bad rap over the years due to its short-term effects on the nervous system. While there is a need to keep coffee drinking, the most identified source of caffeine, in check, there are some positive attributes associated with the stimulant that may provide an added layer of defense against some of the common cognitive issues associated with old age.
1. Improved Reasoning and Logical Thinking
In a study involving military personnel who lacked sufficient sleep, 200 mg doses of caffeine improved logical thinking and reasoning skills. According to Milwaukee live-in care providers, seniors who have difficulty sleeping for one reason or another may also enjoy similar benefits, although efforts should still be made to restore sleep cycles.
2. Decreased Risk of Dementia and Alzheimer’s
A handful of studies involving coffee and tea drinking suggest a reduction in cognitive decline with age. Researchers from one study concluded that 3-5 cups of coffee per day at midlife may reduce the risk of developing dementia or Alzheimer’s later in life by as much as 65 percent.
3. Reduced Stroke Risk
A Swedish study involving women between the ages of 49 and 83 found that those who consumed more than a cup of coffee per day had a reduced risk of stroke. A Hawaiian study involving men with high blood pressure also noted a reduction in stroke risk among subjects who drank caffeinated coffee on a regular basis.
4. Reduced Driver Errors
An Australian study, involving caffeinated gum rather than coffee, found that participants were less fatigued. For seniors, improved alertness behind the wheel can help prevent accidents.
Chocolate, which also has several surprising health benefits when consumed in moderation, also naturally contains some caffeine. More than 80 drugs are known to interact with caffeine, so seniors looking to improve cognitive functioning with a few cups of java a day should check with their doctor first.
Learn more about promoting senior health from the friendly staff at Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of elder care in Milwaukee, WI. We offer comprehensive home care services for seniors of all physical and cognitive abilities on a part-time or live-in basis. Give us a call today at (414) 964-8000 and request a free in-home consultation to learn more.