Summary: Drinking four or more cups of black, green, or oolong tea daily is associated with a 17 percent lower risk of type 2 diabetes.

Source: Diabetes

A systematic review and meta-analysis of more than 1 million adults from eight countries found that moderate consumption of black, green, or oolong tea was associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes.

The findings, presented at this year’s European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) annual meeting in Stockholm, Sweden (September 19-23), suggest that drinking at least four cups of tea a day has a 17 percent lower risk. T2D in an average of 10 years.

“Our results are interesting because they suggest that people can do something as simple as drinking four cups of tea a day to reduce their risk of type 2 diabetes,” said lead author Xiaying Li from Hanhan University of Science and Technology in China.

While regular consumption of tea has long been known to be beneficial to health due to the various anti-inflammatory, anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic compounds that tea contains, the relationship between tea consumption and T2D risk is less clear. To date, published cohort studies and meta-analyses have reported inconsistent findings.

To address this uncertainty, researchers conducted a cohort study and dose-response meta-analysis to better define the association between tea consumption and future T2DM risk.

First, they studied 5,199 adults (2583 men, 2616 women) without a history of T2D (mean age 42 years) from the China Health and Nutrition Survey (CHNS) who were recruited in 1997 and followed until 2009. A study looking at the economics, sociological aspects and health of residents from nine regions.

At baseline, participants filled out food and beverage frequency questionnaires and provided information on lifestyle factors such as regular exercise, smoking, and alcohol consumption. A total of 2,379 (46%) participants reported drinking tea, and by the end of the study, 522 (10%) participants had developed T2D.

After adjusting for factors known to be associated with T2D risk, such as age, gender, and physical inactivity, researchers found that tea drinkers had a similar risk of developing T2D compared to non-drinkers. And the results did not change much when the results were analyzed by age and sex, or when participants with diabetes in the first 3 years were excluded.

In the next phase of the study, the researchers conducted a systematic review of all cohort studies examining tea consumption and T2D risk in adults (aged 18 and older) until September 2021. In total, 19 studies included 1,076,311 participants from eight countries. [1] They were included in a dose-response meta-analysis.

They explored the potential effects of different types of tea (green tea, oolong tea, and black tea), frequency of tea drinking (1 cup/day, 1-3 cups/day, and 4 or more cups). Gender (male vs. female) and study location (Europe vs. America or Asia) on T2D risk.

Overall, the meta-analysis found a direct link between tea consumption and T2D risk, with each cup of tea consumed per day reducing the risk of T2D by 1%.

Compared to adults who did not drink tea, those who drank 1-3 cups a day had a 4% lower risk of developing T2D, while those who consumed at least 4 cups a day had a 17% lower risk.

This shows a cup of tea
Overall, the meta-analysis found a direct link between tea consumption and T2D risk, with each cup of tea consumed per day reducing the risk of T2D by 1%. The image is in the public domain.

The associations observed suggest that regardless of the type of tea drinkers, male or female, or where they live, it may be the amount of tea they drink that plays the biggest role.

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This shows the brain

“While more research is needed to determine the exact amount and mechanism behind these observations, our findings suggest that tea consumption may be beneficial in reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes, but only in large amounts (at least 4 cups per day),” says Lee.

She added, “Certain compounds in tea, such as polyphenols, may lower blood glucose levels, but sufficient amounts of these bioactive compounds may be required to be effective.” This explains why we did not find an association between tea consumption and type 2 diabetes in our cohort study because we did not observe high tea consumption.

Oolong tea is a traditional Chinese tea made from the same plant used to make green and black tea. The difference is how the tea is made – green tea is not allowed to oxidize much, black tea is allowed to oxidize until it turns black, and oolong tea is partially oxidized.

Although there are important findings, the study is observational and cannot prove that drinking tea reduces the risk of T2D, but they suggest that it contributes.

And the researchers pointed out several caveats, including the possibility that other lifestyle and physiological factors could confound the results considering the amount of tea consumed.

So diabetes research news

Author: Judy Naylor
Source: Diabetes
Contact: Judy Naylor – Diabetologia
Image: The image is in the public domain.

Preliminary study: The findings will be presented at the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes

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