According to a study published Saturday, drinking at least 4 cups of this tea a day can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes by 17% over an average period of 10 years. The unpublished research will be presented at the European Society for Diabetes Research Annual Meeting in Stockholm this week.
Xiaying Li, first author of the study and a graduate student at Wuhan University of Science and Technology, said the relationship between tea drinking and the risk of type 2 diabetes has been studied. before, but the results were inconsistent.
“Our study shows that the association between tea drinking and (type 2 diabetes) depends on the amount of tea consumed. Only drinking enough tea can show a clinical effect,” Li said. by email. “Based on our findings, I would advise the public to consume more tea in their daily lives, if appropriate.”
Initially, the researchers found that the tea drinkers and non-tea drinkers in their study had a similar risk of type 2 diabetes.
But when researchers decided to see if the amount consumed among tea drinkers made a difference by performing a systematic review of 19 cohort studies involving more than 1 million adults. from eight countries, the results were different – the more cups of green, oolong or black tea participants drank daily, the lower their risk of type 2 diabetes. The measurements tracked in these studies were whether participants drank less than one cup of tea per day, one to three cups per day, or four or more.)
The authors caution that their study does not prove that drinking tea reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes, but does suggest that drinking tea is likely to contribute, according to a news release. They also note that they are based on the participants’ own assessment of their tea consumption and cannot rule out the possibility that lifestyle and unmeasured physiological factors may have influenced the results. .
Experts not involved in the study agreed with the authors’ admission of the current study’s shortcomings.
Naveed Sattar, a professor of metabolic medicine: “It is possible that people who drink a lot of tea avoid or drink more or equal amounts of sugar-sweetened beverages, or that they have other health behaviors that put them at risk. have a lower incidence of type 2 diabetes”. at the University of Glasgow, said in a statement.
Kevin McConway, emeritus professor of applied statistics at the Open University in the UK, said: “The findings should be taken with a very large pinch of salt (or cup of tea). “The trouble with meta-analytical findings is that the devil is always in the details, and we don’t have the details. What studies were included? How was their quality? Who, from the country Which country, has been studied?”
“Specific ingredients in tea, such as polyphenols, can lower blood glucose levels by inhibiting α-glucosidase activity and/or inhibiting the activity of other enzymes, but an adequate amount is required. enough bioactive ingredients to be effective,” Li said.
Duane Mellor, a registered dietitian and senior lecturer at Aston University in Birmingham, UK, says the take-home message is that lifestyle choices are important for managing type 2 diabetes risk. Mellor was not involved in the study.