Coffee and tea consumption reduce MRSA risk

by Deborah Braconnier report

While an apple a day may keep the doctor away, new research published in the Annals of Family Medicine say that hot tea or coffee may keep the methicillin-resistant Staphyloccus aureus, or MRSA, bug away, or at least out of your nose.

The study, led by Eric Matheson from the University of South Carolina, looked at 5,500 Americans and their and hot tea consumption in association with the presence of the MRSA bacteria in the .

In general, around one percent of the population in the United States carries the MRSA in their nose or on their skin but does not become sick with MRSA. Laboratory studies have shown that tea extracts that were inhaled or topically applied showed anti-MRSA activity. This laboratory evidence prompted Matheson to look at how the consumption of tea and coffee might play a role in MRSA nasal carriage.

Out of the 5,500 participants, 1.4 percent was positive for MRSA in their nose. However, when the group was broken down into groups based on tea and , the number lowered. Those that drank either tea or coffee saw a reduction of around 50 percent, while those that consumed both beverages say a reduction of 67 percent.

While the study was unable to show a direct between coffee and tea consumption and nasal MRSA, the researchers do believe there is a connection. They are looking at the potential of glyoxal, methylglyoxal, trigonelline and diacetyl in coffee and tannic acid and catechins in tea.

Debate is still out however as to whether a reduction in a person’s MRSA nasal carriage risk by drinking coffee and tea would also reduce a person’s risk of falling ill to MRSA. It is also still debated as to whether MRSA carriers are at an increased risk of active infection.

Related Stories

Where MRSA colonizes on the human body

Jan 05, 2011

When methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) is carried in the nose (nares), it is a risk factor for an invasive infection, including a surgical site infection. Some studies have found that the heavier the carriage of MRS ...

Tea: the New Anti-Aging Beverage?

Mar 30, 2006

Tea may be more than a trendy coffee alternative, according to researchers at the Douglas Hospital Research Centre (DHRC). Their findings, published in a recent issue of the European Journal of Neuroscience, sugges ...

Recommended for you

STDs on the rise in Miami area

4 hours ago

Rates of both chlamydia and syphilis in Miami-Dade have nearly doubled since 2006, according to new statistics from the Florida Department of Health.

User comments

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

dogbert
2.5 / 5 (2) Jul 15, 2011
Many hospitals routinely test for MRSA in the nasal passages of patients. For positive results, they routinely treat the patient.

It is rather foolish to test and treat people for a disease they do not have. Such are the results of government pressures to "do something" even when that "something" is foolish and ineffective.
SarCasm
5 / 5 (2) Jul 15, 2011
MRSA is a BACTERIA NOT A VIRUS!
Doug_Huffman
1 / 5 (1) Jul 15, 2011
Staphyloccus aureus is a bacteria, it is NOT a virus.
For positive results, they routinely treat the patient...for MRSA in the nasal passages of patients.
Really? With what and at what cost? This ignorance is precisely the source of resistant organisms.

Good people ought to be armed as they will, with wits and Guns and the Truth.
frajo
not rated yet Jul 15, 2011
MRSA is a BACTERIA NOT A VIRUS!

Bacteria is the plural form of bacterium.

The word forms bacterium and bacteria are Latinized, i.e. vulgarized versions of the Greek original vacterion (meaning "small rod") and its plural vacteria.

The confusion between the letters "b" and "v" stems from the fact that the Greek letter beta somewhat resembles the Latin letter b but is spoken like the English v.
OldBlackCrow
5 / 5 (1) Jul 19, 2011
Dispite it's etymology, the medical and scientific community differentiate the words due to their basic life functions. Something this obvious should be immediately corrected on principle alone. I've been in the medical field for almost 30 years and a fan of PhysicsOrg.com for at least three years. I actually thought about not finishing the article when I encountered this gross error. Come on editors... edit!
OldBlackCrow
5 / 5 (1) Jul 19, 2011
I see that they have... thanks!