Tea drinking is linked with new and emerging health benefits according to a new research review1 by Dr Carrie Ruxton, independent dietitian and public health nutritionist.
Regular tea drinking is associated with several well-established health benefits, key among which is reduced coronary risk. Previous research has shown that black tea in excess of 3 cups a day is associated with lower risk of heart attack2 and a reduced risk of stroke.3 This benefit likely relates to the bioactive compounds founds in tea exerting an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-atherogenic effect.
Evidence is now, however, emerging for a range of diverse health benefits. Dr Ruxton’s latest review focused on three areas of health in relation tea:
• weight management
• oral health
• gut health
Tackling weight loss matters
Commenting on the new research review by Dr Carrie Ruxton just published, Emerging evidence for tea benefits, Dr Tim Bond from the Tea Advisory Panel (TAP) notes: “In terms of weight management, Dr Ruxton’s published review found further supporting effects for green tea when consumed by overweight and obese adults. How green tea might contribute to weight management needs further research, but this latest research review suggests that the catechin ingredients could impact on satiety and thermogenesis and may counter the reductions in metabolism seen when body weight falls.
“In addition, impaired glucose handling -glycaemia - is known to be a factor in overweight adults and this review highlights a meta-analysis of 22 trials, involving 1584 study subjects4 which found that green tea catechins significantly lowered fasting blood glucose
“A study involving black tea discovered that the ingestion of 1g of black tea in 250ml water significantly lowered blood glucose levels when compared with other beverages.5
“This finding was suggested to be due to the phenolic compounds in black tea improving the insulin response. Overall this review found good evidence suggesting that green tea catechins help to regulate blood glucose levels.”
Providing oral and gut health benefits
Commenting further on Dr Ruxton’s research review, Dr Tim Bond continues: “A relatively little known benefit of tea until recently has been its potential for reducing the risk of dental caries. This benefit is thought to be due to a reduction in inflammation in the oral cavity and prevention of the adhesion and growth of bacteria linked to periodontal disease.6”
Dr Tim Bond adds: “Dr Ruxton’s review also points to emerging evidence suggesting that tea can alter the bacterial milieu of the gastrointestinal tract. Evidence suggests that tea can inhibit the growth of Helicobacter pylori,7 a bacterium associated with peptic ulcer, while also exerting a prebiotic effect and increasing the Bifidobacteria count. These findings suggest that tea could have broader, more long term effects on health.”
Author of this latest research review, Dr Carrie Ruxton in summary notes: “Research continues to indicate that green tea may have weight management benefits particularly when doses of catechins are between 270 to 1200mg/day.8 As a result, green tea should be integrated into more weight loss programmes. There is also evidence specific to black tea (3-4 cups a day), that this beverage could help to reduce levels of cariogenic bacteria in the mouth9. News set to be welcomed I am sure by dentists and hygienists alike as they continue to educate the nation on the need for greater oral care. In addition, my research review also revealed the promising effects of tea drinking on the bacterial milieu of the gut, data findings which are also emerging in other the scientific literature, all of which point to broader and longer term benefits on our health.”
In summary, Dr Bond from TAP notes: “This latest research review already adds to the many health benefits associated with the humble cup of tea including heart health benefits and links with reduced risk of cancers. As a result, British people should continue to enjoy their traditional life long habit of drinking tea to help enjoy the many proven and emerging health benefits.”
- ENDS -
The Tea Advisory Panel: The Tea Advisory Panel is supported by an unrestricted educational grant from the UK TEA COUNCIL, the trade association for the UK tea industry. The Panel has been created to provide media with impartial information regarding the health benefits of tea. Panel members include nutritionists; dieticians and doctors. For further information please call 0207 7052 8989.
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1 Ruxton C. Emerging evidence for tea benefits.
2 Ruxton C (2008) Black tea and health. Nutrition Bulletin 22(2), 91-101
3 Ruxton C & Mason P (2012) Is black tea consumption associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabtetes risk? Nutrition Bulletin 37(1), 4-15.
4 Zheng XX, Xu YL, Li SH et al. (2013). Effects of green tea catechins with or without caffeine on glycemic control in adults: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 97(4), 750-762.
5 Bryans JA, Judd PA & Ellis PR (2007) The effect of consuming instant black tea on postprandial plasma glucose and insulin concentrations in healthy humans. Journal of the American College of Nutrition 26(5), 471-477.
6 Chatterjee A, Saluja M, Agarwal G et al. (2010) Green tea: A boon for periodontal and general health. Journal of Indian Society of Periodontology 16(2), 161-167.
7 Ankolekar C, Johnson D, Pinto Mda S et al. (2011) Inhibitory potential of tea polyphenolics and influence of extraction time against Helicobacter pylori and lack of inhibition of beneficial lactic acid bacteria. Journal of Medicinal Food 14(11), 1321-1329.
8 Rains TM, Agarwal S & Maki KC (2011) Antiobesity effects of green tea catechins: a mechanistic review. Journal of Nutritional Biochemisyty 22(1), 1-7.
9 Allah AA, Ibrahium MI, & Al-Atrouny AM (2011) Effect of black tea on some cariogenic bacteria. World Applied Sciences Journal 12(4), 552-558.
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