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Tea is one of the most commonly consumed beverages in the world, especially in Asian countries. It is rich in tannins, catechins, and other polyphenolic compounds that elicit beneficial health effects associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes. A recent study suggests that habitual tea drinkers may live longer than non-habitual drinkers.
The prospective cohort study involved more than 100,000 adults living in China who completed questionnaires about their tea consumption. Those who drank tea three or more times per week were classified as habitual tea drinkers, while those who drank tea fewer than three times per week were classified as non-habitual tea drinkers. Hospital records and death certificates provided data about mortality rates and causes among the participants during a follow-up period of approximately eight years, on average.
The findings revealed that habitual tea drinkers were 22 percent less likely to die heart disease and stroke and were 15 percent less likely to die from all causes of premature death compared to non-habitual drinkers. The habitual tea drinkers were also more likely to live longer (about one year and three months) and cardiovascular disease-free (nearly one and one-half years) than non-habitual drinkers.
These findings underscore the role of diet in improving healthspan and longevity and suggest that minor modifications can markedly influence disease risk.