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Tea Shows Promise in Fighting Diabetes

Scottish scientists say that drinking tea might help combat diabetes. Pre-clinical research conducted at the University of Dundee indicates that ingredients in black tea “mimic insulin action.”

A team lead by Dr. Graham Rena of the university’s Neurosciences Institute has been working diligently to identify agents that might substitute for insulin in Type 2 diabetes. Thus far the group’s research has revealed that black tea ingredients known as theaflavins and thearubigins mimic insulin action.

Dr. Rena has been quoted in a Scottish news site as saying, “What we have found is that these constituents can mimic insulin action on proteins known as FOXOs … The task now is to see whether we can translate these findings into something useful for human health.” Rena added, “There is definitely something interesting in the way these naturally occurring components of black tea may have a beneficial effect, both in terms of diabetes and our wider health.”

Dr. Graham Rena notes that his team’s research into tea compounds is at an experimental phase and that further testing is needed. In the meantime, diabetics are advised to continue to take medications as directed by their doctors.