Green Tea and Cholesterol Reduction
Surpassed only by water, tea is the most abundantly consumed beverage on the planet. There are many different types of tea; however one in particular has been used for centuries not simply for flavorful hydration, but also as a means to treat various health conditions. Green tea has been a staple of medicinal folklore for centuries. Green tea may be beneficial for a whole host of conditions including some types of cancers, gastrointestinal problems and even tooth cavities. However, the relationship between green tea and cholesterol has begun to show some potentially exciting new benefits to be derived from the common brew.
Typically, medications are used to lower cholesterol fast. This is because high levels of bad (LDL or, low density lipoprotein) cholesterol can significantly increase the risk of heart related health conditions. The body makes a large portion of the cholesterol found within it. It is manufactured by the liver. How much the body makes depends on genetics and family history. Diet and lifestyle also play a role in levels of the blood fat found within the body. When levels get to be too high, medications called statins are typically used to lower cholesterol fast. However, before things get to this dangerous point, making dietary changes or changing negative lifestyle factors can help to control cholesterol levels. It is possible that given new findings regarding green tea and cholesterol that the flavorful beverage may be able to help stave off a rise in LDL.
Antioxidants are thought to be the powerful compounds found within green tea that give it the healthful qualities that it possesses. And, the University of Maryland explains that these antioxidants, called polyphenols, are found in incredibly high concentrations of unfermented tea leaves (thus the term “green” tea). Studies point to these compounds’ ability to lower bad cholesterol by blocking the absorption of it in the small intestine. And, green tea and cholesterol benefits do not stop at LDL reduction alone. Studies also point to the brew’s ability to raise HDL (high density lipoprotein) cholesterol, which in turn can keep bad cholesterol in check. Those who have not been able to kick the habit may also be interested to know that studies have also shown that green tea may lower cholesterol in smokers considerably.
But, how much green tea needs to be consumed to have positive effects on cholesterol levels? Well, healthaliciousness.com explains why only those who are incredibly fond of the beverage will be able to consider it a true cholesterol tea. While by no means a precise form of measure, it is estimated that for true LDL reduction, ten glasses daily need to be consumed. It can therefore be considered a cholesterol lowering tea; however the abundance it must be drank in makes it impractical for any sort of treatment. Unfortunately, while shown to be effective, the statistics involving green tea and cholesterol reduction may be considered downright unimpressive. According to healthaliciousness.com, each glass may reduce the level of cholesterol in the blood by just 0.015 mmol/l (0.58mg/dL). In terms of overall reduction, this amount is rather small, and suggests that green tea may be an ideal part of diets to lower cholesterol in conjunction with medical care and lifestyle changes, but likely inadequate on its own as any sort of therapy.
While statistically, the relationship between green tea and cholesterol may seem over inflated, it is actually a much more complicated relationship than just milli-moles per liter in reduction. The University of Maryland points to green tea’s benefits for atherosclerosis, citing studies that show that the antioxidant rich beverage can reduce the progression of the artery clogging condition. With this information combined with the LDL lowering and HDL raising effects of green tea, the brew may just be considered pretty heart healthy after all. This news may be particularly pleasing to those struggling with the ten glass a day suggestion, as a mere three glasses a day may be all that is needed to lower heart attack risk by ten percent.
Green tea is likely not an answer to how to lower cholesterol naturally enough to remove oneself from categories considered dangerous or high risk. The impact it has on cholesterol numbers is slight, and great intake is required to yield substantial results. Hence, it is not any sort of remedy to consider in order to obtain normal cholesterol values from significantly elevated levels. However, for people who are gradually climbing higher on the total cholesterol ladder that are looking for ways to incorporate the benefits from nature into their daily diets to get cholesterol under control before it becomes a problem, green tea may be an option to consider. Studies regarding green tea and cholesterol are still not prolific, and in time it is likely that even more will be learned about the relationship between polyphenols and LDL reduction. Until then, green tea will continue to be a stand out amongst natural cholesterol remedies that has been proven to reduce high levels of bad blood fats in some studies, showing genuine promise.