You may know your black tea by the famous beverages made from it, such as Earl Grey, English Breakfast, and Masala Chai. But here's one more reason for you to drink black tea--according to research, it may protect you from illnesses such as type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes causes organs to incorrectly respond to insulin, leaving too much glucose in the blood, which causes high blood sugar or hypoglycemia.

A study originally published on BMJ Open and currently featured on ScienceDaily.com has found that countries whose citizens drink black tea on a regular basis have fewer cases of type 2 diabetes. This conclusion was brought about by collecting information from 50 different countries and referring to data from the World Health Organization, which showed an association between the number of black tea drinkers and type 2 diabetes patients. Ireland seemed to be the leading consumer of black tea, which is one of the countries with the lowest type 2 diabetes count. A direct connection between the condition and the numbers is yet to be established, but researchers seem to be hopeful.

According to the authors, the fermentation process required to create black tea is what helps the body maintain recommended glucose levels. It produces theaflavins and thearubigins which are polyphenols that act as antioxidants, strengthening the body against degenerative and chronic diseases.

(Photo by bibliothekarin via Flickr Creative Commons)

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