Associations of Long-Term Tea Consumption with Depressive and Anxiety Symptoms in Community-Living Elderly: Findings from the Diet and Healthy Aging Study

  • S.-P. Chan
  • P. Z. Yong
  • Y. Sun
  • R. Mahendran
  • J. C. M. Wong
  • C. Qiu
  • T.-P. Ng
  • E.-H. Kua
  • Lei FengEmail author
Original Research



To examine the association between long-term tea consumption and depressive and anxiety symptoms in community-living elderly.


Community based cross-sectional study.


The Diet and Healthy Aging Study (DaHA), a prospective cohort study in Singapore.


614 elderly aged 60 years and above, who were free of dementia and cognitive impairment.


Information on tea consumption was obtained through interviewer-administered questionnaire. Long-term tea drinking was defined as regular consumption for at least 15 years. Depressive and anxiety symptoms were measured using the 15-item Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS-15) and the 20-item Geriatric Anxiety Inventory (GAI), respectively. A generalized structural equation model (gSEM) was applied to ascertain the association between long-term tea consumption and depressive and anxiety symptoms.


About 59% of the subjects had consumed tea for over 15 years. Long term tea consumption was significantly associated with a reduced odds of having depressive and anxiety symptoms, after adjusting for demographics (i.e., age, gender, education and ethnicity), comorbid conditions (i.e., heart disease, diabetes, stroke, hypertension and hyperlipidaemia) and long-term coffee consumption.


There was evidence suggesting that longterm tea consumption was associated with reduced depressive and anxiety symptoms among community-living elderly. This suggests that it is worthwhile to further investigate the role of tea’s bioactive compounds in promoting mental health in aging.

Key words

Tea aging depression anxiety generalized structural equation model 


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Copyright information

© Serdi and Springer-Verlag France SAS, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • S.-P. Chan
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
  • P. Z. Yong
    • 5
  • Y. Sun
    • 5
  • R. Mahendran
    • 5
    • 6
    • 7
  • J. C. M. Wong
    • 5
    • 6
  • C. Qiu
    • 8
  • T.-P. Ng
    • 5
  • E.-H. Kua
    • 5
    • 6
  • Lei Feng
    • 5
    • 9
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Medicine, Yong Loo Lin School of MedicineNational University of SingaporeSingaporeSingapore
  2. 2.Department of Decision Sciences, NUS School of BusinessNational University of SingaporeSingaporeSingapore
  3. 3.Cardiovascular Research InstituteNational University Heart Centre SingaporeSingaporeSingapore
  4. 4.School of Engineering & Mathematical SciencesLa Trobe UniversityMelbourneAustralia
  5. 5.Department of Psychological Medicine, Yong Loo Lin School of MedicineNational University of SingaporeSingaporeSingapore
  6. 6.Department of Psychological MedicineNational University HospitalSingaporeSingapore
  7. 7.Duke-NUS Medical SchoolSingaporeSingapore
  8. 8.Aging Research Center, Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences and SocietyKarolinska Institutet-Stockholm UniversityStockholmSweden
  9. 9.Department of Psychological MedicineNational University Health SystemSingaporeRepublic of Singapore

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