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A few weeks ago my wife told me to drink only black tea with no milk, because she saw somewhere that milk cancels out the benefits of the tea. I did some googling and found this:

"Black tea significantly improves the ability of the arteries to relax and expand. But when we added milk, we found the biological effect of tea was completely abolished... If you want to drink tea for its health effects, don't drink it with milk." -- Dr. Verena Stangl

This is based on the paper:

Addition of milk prevents vascular protective effects of tea Mario Lorenz, Nicoline Jochmann, Amélie von Krosigk, Peter Martus, Gert Baumann, Karl Stangl and Verena Stangl. Eur Heart J (2007) doi: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehl442 Jan 2007

Black tea significantly improved FMD in humans compared with water, whereas addition of milk completely blunted the effects of tea. To support these findings, similar experiments were performed in isolated rat aortic rings and endothelial cells. Tea induced vasorelaxation in rat aortic rings and increased the activity of endothelial nitric oxide synthase by phosphorylation of the enzyme in endothelial cells. All effects were completely inhibited by the addition of milk to tea. Of the various kinds of milk proteins, the caseins accounted for these inhibiting effects of milk, probably by formation of complexes with tea catechins.

Do all of the benefits get cancelled, or are they only talking about benefits to the heart/cardiovascular system? Are they going to far by saying that the effects were "completely abolished"?

  • 1
    I think this is research level. It's asking us to peer-review a paper... – Sklivvz Nov 23 '11 at 16:15
  • 2
    I think you need to specify which "positive effects" you are talking about. Adding milk would increase the caloric value of the tea and that could be considered a positive effect. – Chad Nov 23 '11 at 19:12

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