Drinking tea may lower the risk of diabetes, heart disease and death, mounting research shows

"Something as simple as drinking four cups of tea a day to potentially lessen [ the] risk of developing type 2 diabetes ... "

NBC NEWS – Mounting evidence suggests that drinking several cups of tea per day has numerous health benefits, including lowering one’s risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and overall mortality.

The newest research on the subject, a review of 19 studies, will be presented at the European Association for the Study of Diabetes’s annual meeting next week.

The results suggested that drinking at least four daily cups of black, green or Oolong tea lowered a person’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 17% over the span of a decade.

The research, conducted by a team from China, involved more than one million adults across eight countries.

The findings indicate that there’s less benefit associated with drinking fewer cups of tea.

“These compounds may decrease inflammation and oxidative stress in the body, and in turn that possibly lowers the risk of developing certain health conditions such as heart disease.” 

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Just one to three cups per day only lowered the risk of type 2 diabetes by 4%, the results showed. The risk of developing diabetes went down by 1% for each additional daily cup.

“Our results are exciting because they suggest that people can do something as simple as drinking four cups of tea a day to potentially lessen their risk of developing type 2 diabetes,” Xiaying Li, a researcher at Wuhan University of Science and Technology, said in a statement.

A study published last month found that drinking two or more daily cups of black tea lowered the overall risk of death by 9% to 13% among people in the UK over a 14-year period, relative to those who drank no tea.

The study also revealed an association between drinking multiple cups of tea and a lower risk of coronary heart disease and stroke.

“We think our findings will be very reassuring to people who are already drinking tea,” said Dr. Maki Inoue-Choi, a staff scientist at the National Cancer Institute who led that research.

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