Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started
My Medicine

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Hypertension/High Blood Pressure Health Center

Font Size

Drinking Black Tea May Lower Blood Pressure

Study: Drinking at Least 3 Cups of Black Tea a Day Lowered Blood Pressure
WebMD Health News
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

Jan. 24, 2012 -- Lowering your blood pressure may a major factor behind the many health benefits of tea.

A new study shows that people who drank three cups of black tea a day lowered their blood pressure levels by an average of 2 to 3 points.

That may not sound like much. But researchers say even small reductions in blood pressure levels, like those found in this study, can have a major impact on the prevalence of high blood pressure (hypertension) and risk of heart disease.

“At a population level, the observed differences in BP [blood pressure] would be associated with a 10% reduction in the prevalence of hypertension and a 7% to 10% reduction in the risk of [heart disease and stroke],” write researcher Jonathan M. Hodgson, PhD, of the School of Medicine and Pharmacology at the University of Western Australia in Perth, Australia, and colleagues in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

Researchers say it’s the first time that long-term use of black tea has been shown to lower blood pressure in people with normal to high-normal blood pressure.

The Perks of Drinking Black Tea?

In the study, researchers looked at the effect of black tea on blood pressure levels among 95 men and women who were regular tea drinkers. Their average systolic blood pressure (the top number in a blood pressure reading) was between 115 and 150 at the start of the study.

Half of the participants drank three cups of black tea per day for six months, and the other half drank a placebo drink with a similar flavor and caffeine content. Both groups were similar in terms of gender, age, and weight status.

By the end of the study, those who drank black tea experienced an average reduction of between 2 and 3 points in their 24-hour average systolic blood pressure level and about 2 points in their diastolic (the lower number in a blood pressure reading) level.

Researchers say there are a number of potential explanations for this health benefit.

Recent studies have shown that drinking black tea can improve the function of the endothelial cells, which line the interior of blood vessels. Endothelial dysfunction is an early indicator of blood pressure changes.

Other research has suggested that the flavonoids found in tea can improve the blood vessel’s tone and reduce body weight and abdominal fat.

Researchers say these findings have important public health implications in light of the high rates of high blood pressure worldwide and the importance of high blood pressure as a risk factor for heart disease and death.

Today on WebMD

blood pressure
Symptoms, causes, and more.
Learn the causes.
Compressed heart
5 habits to change.
Mature man floating in pool, goggles on head
Exercises that help.
heart healthy living
Erectile Dysfunction Slideshow
Bernstein Hypertension Affects Cardiac Risk
Compressed heart
Heart Disease Overview Slideshow
thumbnail for lowering choloesterol slideshow
Heart Foods Slideshow
Low Blood Pressure

WebMD Special Sections