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Drinking Tea on a Regular Basis May Lower Risk of Heart Disease and Stroke

Atherosclerosis is a disease in which plaque builds up inside your arteries and can lead to a heart attack or stroke. A new study suggests that drinking tea three or more times per week may help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, and increase longevity.

For their study, the researchers used data from the Prediction for ASCVD Risk in China project that included 100,902 adults. None of the participants had a history of heart attack, stroke, or cancer at baseline. Tea consumption information was gathered via questionnaires, and participants were classified as habitual tea drinkers (three or more times per week) or non-habitual tea drinkers (less than three times per week). They were followed for an average of 7.3 years.

Habitual tea drinkers were found to have a 20% lower risk of heart disease and stroke, a 22% lower risk of fatal heart disease and stroke, and a 15% lower risk of all-cause mortality, compared to non-habitual tea drinkers. In addition, habitual tea drinkers had 1.41 more years of being free from heart disease and stroke, and 1.26 years of longer life expectancy at the age of 50, compared to non-habitual tea drinkers.

The researchers also looked at the effect of changes in tea consumption over time by following a subset of 14,081 participants for an additional 13 years. Participants who maintained their habitual tea drinker status had a 39% lower risk of heart disease and stroke, a 56% lower risk of heart disease and stroke, and a 29% lower risk of all-cause mortality, compared to consistent non-habitual tea drinkers.

The study was conducted by researchers from the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences. It was published online ahead of print on January 8, 2020 in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.

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