The journal “Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition” brings more good news for women who drink tea. Their love of the leaf may lead to better bone mineral density (BMD).
The study examined a wide range of epidemiological studies that had been conducted across the globe. A correlation between improved BMD and tea drinking was found for women in Canada, England, Taiwan, Iran, Japan and Australia. The amount of tea didn’t seem to make a substantial difference, with the same positive effect seen for those who drank only one to three cups as compared to those who drank more than four cups.
Men did not experience the same improvement in BMD.
Researchers hypothesize that the bone benefits result from the tea’s flavonoids. The flavonoids may act like estrogen, preventing the release of osteoclasts which can cause the deterioration of bones.
The National Osteoporosis Foundation currently recommends eating fruits and vegetables because of the flavonoid effect, but they have not extended the recommendation to tea.
Researchers hope to pursue further studies that would look at the relationship between tea consumption and bone fractures.
The study, “Tea and Bone Health: Findings from Human Studies, Potential Mechanisms, and Identification of Knowledge Gaps,” was conducted by Leslie A. Nash and Wendy E. Ward. It was accepted for publication in December 2014 and the preliminary author version was first published in June 2015.