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Tea drinking benefits older population

Tea drinking benefits older population

Friday, November 23, 2012. The November 14, 2012 issue of the British Journal of Nutrition published the findings of researchers at Duke University in North Carolina of a beneficial effect for tea consumption among older individuals residing in China.

Danan Gu and associates analyzed data from 13,429 men and 19,177 women aged 65 years and older who participated in the Chinese Longitudinal Health Longevity Survey. Subject interviews provided data on frequency of tea consumption and other data. Tea drinking was categorized as daily or almost daily, sometimes (two to four times per week), or seldom or never.

From the first wave of enrollment in 1998 to 2005, 4,833 men and 7,551 women died. Among men aged 65 to 84 years, those who reported drinking two to four cups of tea per week had a 19 percent lower risk of dying during that time period in comparison with men who seldom drank the beverage. Daily or almost daily tea consumption was associated with a 12 to 23 percent lower risk. While drinking tea daily or almost daily significantly reduced the risk of death among men aged 85 and older, less frequent tea drinking did not confer a similar benefit. Tea intake did not appear to have an effect on mortality among women in this study. However, both men and women who consumed tea daily or almost daily, as well as sometimes, had a lower risk of being in poor health in comparison with seldom drinkers. Furthermore, in comparison with seldom drinkers, almost daily intake was associated with a 37 percent lower risk of cardiovascular disease in men and a 50 percent decrease in women in the 65 to 84 age group. Men aged 85 and older also experienced a reduction in cardiovascular disease in association with daily or almost daily intake. In their discussion, the authors suggest that the higher prevalence of smoking among older Chinese men in comparison with women could make the protective effects of tea more noticeable in this group.

"High frequency of tea consumption is significantly associated with reduced odds ratio of disability in activities of daily living, cognitive impairment, self-rated poor health, cumulative health deficits and cardiovascular disease in both young elders and the oldest-old, and in both men and women," the authors report. "These results suggest that the health benefit of drinking tea is universal. We conclude that frequent tea consumption probably helps one achieve healthy longevity and that men benefit more from such lifestyles."

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Green tea compound could help normalize glucose response

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The results of a study described online on October 5, 2012 in the journal Molecular Nutrition and Food Research suggest that epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), a compound in green tea, could help reduce the spike in blood sugar that occurs following the consumption of starchy food. The finding could benefit humans with metabolic syndrome, a cluster of symptoms that include elevated blood glucose levels, which are linked to an increased risk of diabetes.

A team led by Joshua D. Lambert of Pennsylvania State University fed fasting mice corn starch, maltose, sucrose or glucose and pretreated some of them with EGCG. Mice that received corn starch and EGCG had a 50 percent reduction in post meal blood glucose levels in comparison with animals that did not receive EGCG. EGCG did not impact animals that received maltose, sucrose or glucose, suggesting that the compound may affect the way the body converts starch into sugar. In further experimentation, EGCG reduced the activity of alpha amylase, a starch-digesting enzyme secreted by the pancreas, by 34 percent.

"The spike in blood glucose level is about 50 percent lower than the increase in the blood glucose level of mice that were not fed EGCG," stated Dr Lambert, who is assistant professor of food science in agricultural sciences at Penn State. "If what you are eating with your tea has starch in it then you might see that beneficial effect. So, for example, if you have green tea with your bagel for breakfast, it may reduce the spike in blood glucose levels that you would normally get from that food."

Since EGCG doesn't appear to reduce the effect of sugars, consuming sweetened green tea with a starchy food would still result in blood sugar spikes. "That may mean that if you add sugar into your green tea, that might negate the effect that the green tea will have on limiting the rise in blood glucose level," Dr Lambert explained.

The dose of EGCG used in the current study was equivalent to the human dose of that found in a cup and a half of green tea. "The relatively low effective dose of EGCG makes a compelling case for studies in human subjects," the authors conclude.

December 2012 Life Extension Magazine® Now Available in Electronic Format

December, 2012 Life Extension Magazine® Now Available in Electronic Format 

This e-issue of Life Extension Magazine® is extraordinarily easy to use, easy to navigate … with the same flip-the-page feeling you get from your printed copy, plus a few extra advantages. You can choose to search out a topic or keyword. Skim quickly. Skip ahead. Even order products. Now all that convenience is right at your fingertips.

As we see it: Former FDA Commissioner admits risk of bureaucratic delay, by William Faloon
An increasing number of scholarly individuals recognize that delaying lifesaving therapies can no longer be tolerated, including former FDA Commissioner Andrew von Eschenbach.

Age-related metabolic decline and weight gain, by Michael Downey
In placebo-controlled studies, scientists have verified that 7-Keto DHEA restores resting metabolic rate and safely induces fat loss.

Slash chronic disease risk with lycopene, by Alex Wilson
Health conscious people increasingly understand that cooked tomato products or supplements are the only way to ensure protective lycopene blood levels.

Reversing male infertility, by Silas Hoffman
Researchers have identified nutrients that safely improve sperm count, quality, and motility–improving the odds of pregnancy without drugs, expensive IVF treatments, or invasive procedures.

The PSA controversy, part I, by Stephen B. Strum, MD, FACP
Here, Dr Stephen B. Strum discusses the critical role PSA testing plays in prostate cancer prevention and treatment.

The PSA controversy, part II, by Stephen B. Strum, MD, FACP
This real-world case history shows how PSA screening can be used as a tool to diagnose and treat prostate cancer without resorting to the inappropriate use of side effect-laden therapies.

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