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The Health Benefits of Making Tea From Loquat Leaves

author image Janet Renee, MS, RD
Janet Renee is a clinical dietitian with a special interest in weight management, sports dietetics, medical nutrition therapy and diet trends. She earned her Master of Science in nutrition from the University of Chicago and has contributed to health and wellness magazines, including Prevention, Self, Shape and Cooking Light.
The Health Benefits of Making Tea From Loquat Leaves
A loquat tree and fruits. Photo Credit graffio77/iStock/Getty Images

If animal data is any indication, drinking tea made from loquat -- a tree native to Japan and China -- may offer health benefits. This beverage is made the same ways as regular tea. Packing crushed leaves into an infuser and allowing it to steep in a cup of hot water for three to five minutes is one method. When people obtain fresh leaves, they typically boil them for five minutes, then cool the tea for five minutes or more, before straining and enjoying. Discuss it with your doctor prior to using loquat tea for purported health benefits.

May Benefit Blood Sugar and Cholesterol

Drinking loquat tea may help keep your blood sugar level steady. Loquat leaves contain properties that have a beneficial influence on blood sugar, according to a review reported in the January to March 2012 edition of the Journal of Pharmacy and BioAllied Sciences. The authors examined evidence from animal studies and found the loquat leaf contains substances that significantly reduce blood sugar in diabetic and nondiabetic animals. Loquat leaf also lowered cholesterol in diabetic animals, according to the review. More research is needed before these results can be applied to humans.

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May Prevent Loss of Bone Density

Bone density decreases as you age. Women are especially vulnerable to bone loss after menopause due to lack of estrogen. Loquat tea may help fight bone loss caused by estrogen deficiency, according to the authors of an animal experiment. Researchers fed loquat leaves to mice that had their ovaries removed. The loquat leaves significantly prevented bone density loss in the head, abdomen and lumbar area, according to the authors. The Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry published the study in the January 2014 issue.

May Have Anti-Cancer Benefits

Loquat tea has anti-cancer properties, according to a test tube experiment Bioscience, Biotechnology and Biochemistry published in October 2014. The tea extract caused death in human leukemia cells and prevented cancerous cells from spreading, according to the authors. The researchers weren't sure exactly how loquat tea protects against cancer, but based on the data, they hypothesized it disables the power center of the cancer cell, preventing it from generating energy.

Loquat Tea Safety

Loquat leaves have bioactive compounds, which means drinking tea made from the leaves may cause side effects or interact with medication. There is a case report of a 39-year-old man who drank 2 liters of loquat extract for two weeks for cholesterol-lowering benefits. While it did lower his cholesterol, it also caused toxic myopathy, a condition characterized by muscle pain and weakness. Cholesterol-lowering medications can cause this condition also. The case is reported in the October 2004 issue of the journal Annals of Rheumatic Diseases.

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