You probably cannot hear “bone health” without thinking about those Got Milk? commercials if you grew up in the ’90s. While it is true that calcium that is found in milk is a key building block for bones, it isn’t the only thing to consider when it comes to your bone health. Plus, milk isn’t always the best way to get your calcium; vegetables like bok choy, kale, and broccoli all provide the body with more calcium. If you would like something beneficial for your bones, put a kettle on and make yourself a cup of tea.
“The main bone advantages of drinking tea are because of its high antioxidants, such as catechins, polyphenols, and flavonoids,” explains Sue Xiao, who is a registered dietitian. “Tea’s strong polyphenols have been found to aid in the formation of bone mineralization by increasing vitamin D levels in the body. Catechins can also help to protect the bone-building cells within the body, while flavonoids do have estrogen-like qualities that can aid in the prevention of bone loss,” says Dr. Yu. (And vitamin D inadequacy is quite common, so this last one is especially significant for many of us.)
According to Yu, drink green, black, or oolong tea to get these benefits. “Green, black, and oolong teas are also advised since they are the most widely consumed in the world,” she says. And whether you like your tea hot or cold is irrelevant; according on Yu, while one study published in The Journal of Clinical Nutrition claims that drinking tea at a temp of 122-140°F helps preserve antioxidants, none of the other research looked at the temperature of the brew.
Tea is an excellent antioxidant, and it’s healthy for your brain, heart, attention, and mood as we age. “Black and green tea are packed with flavanols, which are antioxidants that have been linked to decreasing cholesterol,” Neva Cochran said. This means that it may help to prevent heart disease.
Tea, according to Cochran, contains catechins that protect your body from free radicals and assist in protecting the brain. This benefits not just the physical body but also the mind. Furthermore, tea consumption was linked to enhanced attention and memory in an article released in the journal Phytomedicine that included 21 different studies on green tea. According to the researchers, the L-theanine and caffeine in the tea are responsible. There are so many different components of tea that make it a wonder drink for your mind.
How much tea should you drink? According to Yu, most bone health research studies recommend drinking one to four cups of tea each day.
Remember, drinking tea is just one aspect of healthy bones. “There are many additional nutrients that are equally essential for bone health,” says Yu. “Just to name a few are calcium, vitamin D, magnesium, and vitamin K.” It’s crucial to eat a well-balanced diet that includes a variety of different food groups and foods to get enough nutrients to maintain bone health.