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Issue 2, 2016
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Comparison of black, green and rooibos tea on osteoblast activity

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Globally, tea is the second most consumed beverage after water. Habitual tea intake has been associated with higher bone mineral density, particularly in postmenopausal women. This association may be due to its polyphenols and resulting protective antioxidant effects. While in vivo studies have shown improved bone outcomes with a consumption of individual purified tea polyphenols, it is unclear if a particular tea – due to its different profiles of polyphenols – is more beneficial than others. Therefore, we compared three different types of commercially available teas on osteoblasts: green, black and rooibos tea. Tea was normalized to 1 or 10 μg per mL gallic acid equivalents to assess differences in outcomes based on tea profiles rather than the quantity of polyphenol naturally present. The lower level of polyphenols (1 μg per mL gallic acid equivalents) – regardless of tea type and thus polyphenol profile – resulted in greater mineral content as well as cellular and alkaline phosphatase activity in Saos2 cells. Moreover, this was associated with higher markers of differentiation (osteopontin, sclerostin) and reduced cellular toxicity and pro-inflammatory markers (IL6, TNFα). Green, black and rooibos tea improved osteoblast activity at the low level and support epidemiological evidence suggesting tea consumption may benefit bone heath.

Graphical abstract: Comparison of black, green and rooibos tea on osteoblast activity

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Article information

08 Oct 2015
14 Jan 2016
First published
15 Jan 2016

Food Funct., 2016,7, 1166-1175
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Comparison of black, green and rooibos tea on osteoblast activity

L. A. Nash and W. E. Ward, Food Funct., 2016, 7, 1166
DOI: 10.1039/C5FO01222H

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