Regular tea drinking over long periods has been linked to reduced arterial stiffness, according to a new study
A new study, titled “A cross-Sectional Study of the Relationship between Habitual Tea Consumption and Arterial Stiffness” shows that people who consume tea for more than six years at 10g daily may be protected against arterial stiffness.
Arterial stiffness is what happens to the artery as people age; basically a generalized thickening and stiffening of the arterial wall, also known in medical terms as arteriosclerosis.
The stiffness of arteries influences how hard the heart has to work to pump blood to other parts of the body. Increased arterial stiffness is associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease such as heart attack, high blood pressure and stroke, leading causes of death in the aging population.
The study looked at a cross-section, epidemiological survey of 5,689 adults, ages 40 – 75, in Wuyishan, Fujian Province in China. Structured questionnaires, pulse wave velocity and ankle-brachial pressure index were used for measurement.
Among the respondents studied, 31.2 per cent said they consumed tea once or more per week for at least a year. However, levels of brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (ba-PWV) were found to be lowest among those who consumed tea for more than a decade.
“As the duration and the daily amount of habitual tea consumption increased, the average ba-PWV decreased,” the study said. “Multiple logistic regression models revealed that habitual tea consumption was a positive predictor for ba-PWV.”
The study corroborates earlier studies that point to the health benefits of tea, says Peter Goggi, President of the Tea Association of the USA.
Goggi pointed to several studies that had been done in the past, including:
- A perspective study of 74,000 subjects over 10 years that found that an inverse relationship between drinking tea and experiencing a stroke.
- A meta-analysis showing that those who drank at least three cups of green or black tea per day have a 21 per cent lower chance of stroke compared to those who consumed less than one cup per day.
- A study which showed that those who consumed more than six cups of tea per day had a lower chance of coronary heart disease than those who did not consume tea.