Black tea comes from the same plant as green tea, so as with green tea, you’ll reap diabetes-friendly benefits. Though it’s the same plant, “different processing methods are used” to create it, explains Stefanski.
A review published in June 2019 in the journal Antioxidants notes that some epidemiological studies show that drinking black, green, or oolong tea may reduce the risk of developing diabetes or diabetes complications. Plus, the researchers suggest tea (including black) may work in the body in part by improving insulin resistance, playing an insulin-like role, as well as alleviating the inflammatory response.
Also, black tea may work to help people with diabetes in other ways. “Animal studies on black tea have found it may reduce carbohydrate absorption and therefore improve blood glucose control; however, more research is needed on humans,” explains Palinski-Wade. A review published in December 2016 in the journal Molecules found that black tea lowered body weight in animals.
Other research, published in January 2017 in the Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found that drinking black tea after consuming sugar helped control blood glucose. The small study looked at people with prediabetes as well as people without diabetes.
More positive news for black tea drinkers: Another review found that tea drinkers, including those who drink black tea, had a lower prevalence of incidence of type 2 diabetes.