Drinking two or more cups of black tea a day could help you live longer: study
(CNN) — A little hot tea in your favorite mug seems to heal the soul, and a new study finds it may be good for your body, too.
Drinking two or more cups of black tea a day is associated with a lower risk of death from all causes, according to the study published Monday in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
The study looked at nearly 500,000 men and women aged 40 to 69 who participated in the UK Biobank, which houses detailed health and genetic information, between 2006 and 2010. The database included information that participants reported on their own tea drinking habits, such as how often and what they added to their cup, according to the study.
Some participants didn’t drink black tea at all, but since the data came from the UK, there were also plenty of people who drank it regularly, and some who drank up to 10 cups a day, said study lead author Maki Inoue-Choi. , epidemiologist at the National Cancer Institute of the United States.
The Biobank followed up about 10 years after the original survey, and the researchers found that people who drank two or more cups of tea a day in the meantime were less likely to die from causes such as cardiovascular disease, ischemic heart disease and stroke. stroke, according to study
The research is an exciting look at tea-drinking habits, but there is still more work to be done before dietary changes are recommended, said Howard Sesso, an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and an associate epidemiologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. Sesso was not involved in the study.
“The authors tried to control for other dietary factors, but tea drinkers generally differ from non-tea drinkers in other ways that would likely weaken these findings. We really need more randomized clinical trials testing tea intake,” Sesso said. in an email.
What about milk and sugar?
For many tea drinkers, the tea making process is crucial.
What temperature should the water be? ‘Do you take it alone? Do you add milk? Sugar? How much?
If you can’t imagine drinking your tea alone, don’t worry just yet. There was no significant reduction in health benefits for those who added milk or sugar, according to the study.
However, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the healthiest way to drink tea. Inoue-Choi said health experts strongly recommend limiting sugar and saturated fats like those in milk.
Should you change your drinking habits?
Although it’s hard to know for sure from the research done so far, Inoue-Choi said there are some good reasons why black tea might be so beneficial.
“There are multiple possible mechanisms,” he said. “Tea is rich in bioactive compounds… They have the potential to decrease oxidative stress and inflammation. That could protect against health conditions like cancer and heart disease.”
There has been a lot of research on the health benefits of green tea.
Observational studies, such as one from 2013, suggest that it might slow the growth of precancerous legions, while a 2014 study found that green tea consumption is associated with a lower risk of cognitive decline.
Both black and green tea come from variations of the same plant, camellia sinensis, but little research so far has looked at the impacts of drinking black tea, Inoue-Choi said.
Due to a lack of research, it may not be time yet to add black tea to your daily routine, he added.
“Our findings may reassure people who already drink tea every day, but we don’t recommend making decisions about whether people start drinking tea or change the amount they drink at this time,” Inoue-Choi said.
People shouldn’t rely on the results of a single study for these kinds of changes, he said, and more research is needed to round out the findings.
“This study does not prove that tea consumption reduces mortality, but it does suggest that if you currently drink tea, and especially black tea, which was the type of tea of choice in the UK, you can continue to do so, Sesso said.