Drinking plenty of tea can reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to a study involving more than one million people from eight countries. Four or more cups of black, green, or oolong tea each day was associated with a 17% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
AT LEAST FOUR CUP
The findings revealed that drinking at least four cups of tea per day was associated with a 17% lower risk of T2D over an average 10-year period. The study was presented at this year’s European Association for Diabetes Research (EASD) Annual Meeting in Stockholm, Sweden.
“Our results are exciting because they suggest that people could do something as simple as drinking four cups of tea a day to potentially reduce their risk of developing type 2 diabetes,” says lead author Xiaying Li, of the Wuhan University of Science and Technology in China.
Tea contains various antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anticarcinogenic compounds. Although it has long been known that drinking tea regularly can be beneficial for health because of these properties, the relationship between tea drinking and the risk of T2D was unknown. Published cohort studies and meta-analyses have presented inconsistent findings so far.
After adjusting for factors known to be associated with increased risk of T2D, such as age, gender, and physical inactivity, the researchers found that tea drinkers had a similar risk of developing T2D compared to non-drinkers.
Overall, the meta-analysis found a linear relationship between tea drinking and T2D risk, with each cup of tea consumed daily reduced the risk of developing T2D by approximately 1%.