The list of the health benefits of drinking tea are long — here's what happens to your body when you consume it — so it may come as no surprise that having it a lot can help lower blood pressure. Tea, like berries, apples, pears, and more foods, contains flavanols. A recent study found that a diet high in flavanols can lead to lower blood pressure.
An analysis of the food choices of 25,618 people in the UK published in the journal Scientific Reports shows that a high intake of flavanols compared to a low intake means a difference of about 2 and 4 mmHg. Authors of the study say this is about the same amount of change that can come from following the Mediterranean diet, the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, or from eating less salt. They saw the biggest change in the participants who started with high blood pressure.
"What this study gives us is an objective finding about the association between flavanols — found in tea and some fruits — and blood pressure," says Gunter Kuhnle, a professor and nutritionist at the University of Reading and who led the study. "This research confirms the results from previous dietary intervention studies and shows that the same results can be achieved with a habitual diet rich in flavanols. In the British diet, the main sources are tea, cocoa, apples and berries."
Overall scientists say that if more people eat more flavanol-rich foods, the risk of cardiovascular diseases would go down. This can look as simple as drinking a cup of tea every day or adding in more berries and apples to your diet.
Need some inspo? How about this Berry Cauliflower Smoothie for breakfast? Or here's 25 Delicious Apple Recipes That are Perfect for Fall.