According to a study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology
, a journal of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC), drinking green tea
at least three times a week is linked with a longer
and healthier life.
First author Dr. Xinyan Wang, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Beijing told Thailand Medical
News, “Habitual tea
consumption is associated with lower risks of cardiovascular
disease and all-cause death. The favorable health
effects are the most robust for green tea
and for long-term habitual tea
The study analysis included 100,902 participants of the China-PAR project2 with no history of heart attack, stroke, or cancer. Participants were classified into two groups: habitual tea
drinkers (three or more times a week) and never or non-habitual tea
drinkers (less than three times a week) and followed-up for a median of 7.3 years.
The study showed that habitual tea
consumption was associated with more healthy
years of life and longer
For instance, the analyses estimated that 50-year-old habitual tea
drinkers would develop coronary heart disease and stroke 1.41 years later and live 1.26 years longer than those who never or seldom drank tea
Another example, compared with never or non-habitual tea
drinkers, habitual tea consumers had a 20% lower risk of incident heart disease and stroke, 22% lower risk of fatal heart disease and stroke, and 15% decreased risk of all-cause death.
The significant potential influence of changes in green tea
drinking behavior were analyzed in a subset of 14,081 participants with assessments at two time points. The average duration between the two surveys was 8.2 years, and the median follow-up after the second survey was 5.3 years.
It was observed that habitual tea
drinkers who maintained their habit in both surveys had a 39% lower risk of incident heart disease and stroke, 56% lower risk of fatal heart disease and stroke, and 29% decreased risk of all-cause death compared to consistent never or non-habitual tea
Dr. Dongfeng Gu, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and senior author added, “The protective effects of tea
were most pronounced among the consistent habitual tea
drinking group. Mechanism studies have suggested that the main bioactive compounds in tea,
, are not stored in the body long-term. Thus, frequent tea
intake over an extended period may be necessary for the cardioprotective effect.”
It was shown in a subanalysis by type of tea
, drinking green tea
was linked with approximately 25% lower risks for incident heart disease and stroke, fatal heart disease and stroke, and all-cause death. However, no significant associations were observed for black tea
The researchers noted that a preference for green tea
is unique to East Asia. “In our study population, 49% of habitual tea
drinkers consumed green tea
most frequently, while only 8% preferred black tea
. The small proportion of habitual black tea
drinkers might make it more difficult to observe robust associations, but our findings hint at a differential effect between tea
Two significant factors may be at play. First, green tea
is a rich source of polyphenols
which protect against cardiovascular disease and its risk factors including high blood pressure and dyslipidaemia. Black tea
is fully fermented and during this process polyphenols
are oxidized into pigments and may lose their antioxidant effects. Second, black tea
is often served with milk, which previous research has shown may counteract the favorable health
effects of tea
on vascular function.
Interestingly, gender-specific analyses showed that the protective effects of habitual tea
consumption were pronounced and robust across different outcomes for men, but only modest for women. Dr. Wang said: “One reason might be that 48% of men were habitual tea
consumers compared to just 20% of women. Secondly, women had much lower incidence of, and mortality from, heart disease and stroke. These differences made it more likely to find statistically significant results among men.”
Dr Wang added: “The China-PAR project is ongoing, and with more person-years of follow-up among women the associations may become more pronounced.”
The researchers concluded that randomized trials are warranted to confirm the findings and provide evidence for dietary guidelines and lifestyle recommendations.
Reference: “Tea consumption and the risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality: The China-PAR project” by Xinyan Wang, Fangchao Liu, Jianxin Li, Xueli Yang, Jichun Chen, Jie Cao, Xigui Wu, Xiangfeng Lu, Jianfeng Huang, Ying Li, Liancheng Zhao, Chong Shen, Dongsheng Hu, Ling Yu, Xiaoqing Liu, Xianping Wu, Shouling Wu and Dongfeng Gu, 8 January 2020, European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.