This topic definitely makes me excited (sorry, anti-tea people). Many Americans, as we know prefer coffee over tea. However, I will not be comparing that. I drink tea everyday and I wanted to know if it is actually true that tea makes my bones strong. I am sure many tea-drinkers from especially Europe and Asia would love to know. So, lets try to find out if we got ’em ‘tea bones!’
I came across one article on this topic recently, however i did most of my research for it based on the WebMed website and other sources. This is the type of study that is still being researched and tested.
Verona M. Hegarty, PhD, a gerontology researcher at England’s University of Cambridge School of Medicine conducted a study, which involved 1,200 women living in Cambridge. This is the small summary of how Hegarty started her research with these women: The 1,200 women were asked questions regarding their health and lifestyle – “that included questions on daily tea and coffee consumption, smoking habits, physical activity, alcohol intake, whether they drank caffeinated or decaffeinated coffee, whether coffee was instant or ground, whether they used hormone replacement therapy, if they added milk to tea, and so on.” Most importantly, their bone mineral density was measured, which showed bone strength in the spine and the area where hip breaks most often occur.
According the Hegarty, the findings were independent of all the things they questioned and tested on these women. Among the women, there were over 1,100 tea drinkers and just about 120 non-tea drinkers, all between the ages of 65 and 76. Why older women? Those older ladies, who drank tea had higher bone mineral density measurements, an indicator of bone health, than those who did not drink tea, according to the study. Hegarty further added that “Nutrients found in tea … [may] protect against osteoporosis in older women.
Thus, “tea drinkers had significantly greater bone mineral density measurements. Among coffee drinkers, those who also drank tea had significantly higher measurements as well.” Also, women who added milk to their tea had higher bone mineral density in the hip area, since milk carries more calcium.
Hagerty’s research and research done by other British or non-British researchers have shown that tea has components that weakly mimic the effect of the female hormone – estrogen, and this may be crucial for the maintenance of bone mineral density in postmenopausal women.
There is still research being done to see the connection with tea, especially green-tea with estrogen. This is a new research and still requires some more studying according to many nutritionist researchers. However, it has been proving right in some cases like the research done by Hagerty.
I have been drinking tea since i was little, but since i am still young and growing through the process it might not show now, like Hagerty and other researchers claimed. My family and ancestors have been tea-drinkers as well for a long time, and our bones are pretty strong. Then again, that’s one family. Some might not be affected with similar outcomes from devouring tea everyday. Tea for Stronger Bones? Here is the link to the complete research. Lets see if we have ‘tea bones,’ or not when we get old.