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How to live longer: One hot beverage could slash the risk of heart disease and stroke

Scientists have found that one hot beverage may slash a person’s risk of heart disease and stroke – two conditions that put your life in danger. Which drink is it?

New data has been published in the peer-reviewed medical journal The European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.

The researchers analysed questionnaire data collected from 100,902 people, which was then followed up by interviews, hospital records and death certificates.

Those enrolled in the study had no history of heart attack, stroke or cancer, and were sorted into two groups.


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The first group were regular tea drinkers who sipped three or more cups a week, while the other group never drank tea or drank it less than three times a week.

During a seven-year follow-up, there were 3,683 cardiovascular disease events, 1,477 cardiovascular disease deaths and 5,479 all-cause deaths recorded.

What’s cardiovascular disease?

The NHS explained that cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a general term for conditions that affect the heart of blood vessels.

Examples of cardiovascular diseases include coronary heart disease, strokes and mini strokes, peripheral arterial disease and aortic disease.

In the study, an analysis found that habitual tea drinkers had nearly two additional years free from cardiovascular disease and experienced longer life expectancy.

Specifically, the research team found the group who drank more tea had a 20 percent lower risk of heart disease and stroke compared to those who didn’t drink tea too often.

The study also reported that regular tea consumption lowers a person’s risk of dying by any cause.

To delve into statistics, the researchers found that those who regularly consumed tea had a 22 percent lower risk of dying from heart disease and stroke.

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Moreover, tea drinkers had a 15 percent decreased risk of dying from all causes.

Green tea, in particular, seemed to be especially protective, as those who sipped on green tea reaped the benefits of a 25 percent lower risk for heart disease and stroke, fatal heart disease and stroke, or mortality in general.

The researchers noted that green tea is packed with polyphenols – macronutrients containing antioxidants that protect against cardiovascular disease.

Polyphenols were also said to help prevent high blood pressure – a risk factor for cardiovascular disease.


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Cardiovascular disease risk factors

Hypertension (high blood pressure) is a key risk factor for cardiovascular disease. This is because high blood pressure damages the blood vessels.

Smoking is another risk factor for developing cardiovascular disease, as the harmful substances in tobacco damage and narrow blood vessels.

Having high cholesterol is also a risk factor, because the fatty substance can stick to arterial walls, narrowing them and increasing the risk of a blood clot.

Moreover, those with type 2 diabetes are at an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. This is due to high blood sugar levels damaging blood vessels.

As you can tell from the risk factors outlined above, anything that damages blood vessels increases a person’s risk of cardiovascular disease.

To combat high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels, the best thing to do is to exercise regularly.

Exercising regularly helps to keep your heart healthy – the NHS recommends people to engage in at least 150 minutes of moderate activity each week.

Examples of moderate activity include brisk walking – fast enough to get your heart thumping and your body sweating – and cycling.

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