Perspective from Robert A. Vogel, MD
March 02, 2016
3 min read

Moderate tea consumption may be cardioprotective

Perspective from Robert A. Vogel, MD
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Moderate tea consumption was associated with decreased progression of coronary artery calcium and lower incidence of major adverse CV events, according to new data from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis.

P. Elliott Miller Jr., MD, and colleagues analyzed 6,212 participants from MESA to determine the relationship between tea intake and coronary artery calcium (CAC) progression and incident major adverse CV events. The findings were presented at the American Heart Association’s EPI/Lifestyle Scientific Sessions in Phoenix.

P. Elliott Miller Jr.

Miller and colleagues stratified participants into five groups by tea consumption: no consumption; less than one cup per day; one cup per day; two to three cups per day; and four or more cups per day.

The outcomes of interest were CAC progression, as measured by cardiac CT, CAC volume progression, and major adverse CV events, defined as CV death, MI, stroke, angina leading to revascularization or resuscitated cardiac arrest. Median follow-up was 11.1 years for major adverse CV event outcomes and 5.3 years for outcomes related to cardiac CT.

After adjustment for demographic, dietary and clinical characteristics, the researchers found that participants who consumed one cup of tea per day had decreased progression of CAC score (HR = 0.79; 95% CI, 0.63-0.99) and CAC volume (HR = 0.8; 95% CI, 0.64-1) compared with those who reported no tea consumption. The same was true for participants who drank two or three cups per day (HR for CAC score progression = 0.63; 95% CI, 0.48-0.82; HR for CAC volume progression = 0.64; 95% CI, 0.49-0.83), according to the findings.

In addition, compared with those who never drank tea, participants who consumed one cup per day had a lower risk for incident major adverse CV events (HR = 0.65; 95% CI, 0.45-0.96).

The researchers reported no difference in any outcome between participants who did not consume tea, those who consumed less than one cup per day and those who consumed four or more cups per day.

“We found that being a moderate tea drinker was associated with decreased progression of CAC and decreased incidence of [major adverse CV events],” Miller, instructor of medicine at Johns Hopkins Hospital, and colleagues wrote in the study abstract. “Future research is needed to understand the potentially protective nature of moderate tea intake.” – by Erik Swain


Miller PE, et al. Abstract MP24. Presented at: American Heart Association’s EPI/Lifestyle Scientific Sessions; March 1-4, 2016; Phoenix.

Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.