This series on green tea has focused thus far on preventing cancer. Now I’m moving on to other amazing abilities of this herbal phenomenon. Let’s peek at the evidence around how green tea could improve your heart’s health.
Cardiovascular health could be improved by drinking green tea in many ways. Let’s break it down into these four:
1. Lowers cholesterol: In a study conducted in China, 220 men and women with mild to moderate high cholesterol were randomly assigned to a daily capsule containing green tea extract or placebo for a total of 12 weeks. In those treated with the green tea extract, total and LDL (bad) cholesterol were significantly lowered by 11.3% and 16%, respectively, as compared to no change in the placebo-treated group.
2. Reduces risk of death from coronary heart disease: In a Japanese study involving 8,522 men and women followed for 12 years, those men who drank 10 cups of green tea a day experienced a 58% reduction in the risk of death from coronary heart disease as compared to those who drank only three cups a day.
3. Lowers blood pressure: In a Japanese study, 240 obese individuals were given green tea containing 583 mg of catechins (the main ingredient in green tea) or placebo. In the group treated with green tea, there was a lowering of systolic blood pressure, as compared to the placebo group. Moreover, the green-tea-treated group had a reduction in body fat and LDL cholesterol as well.
4. Prevents strokes: In a Japanese study with 4,200 men and women who died of cardiovascular diseases or cancers, drinking green tea was inversely associated with death due to all causes ( except cancer) — and due to heart disease in particular. This protective effect was stronger in women than men. The strongest inverse association was observed in those with stroke. Compared to women who drank less than one cup of green tea a day, those who drank six or more cups a day had a 42% lower risk of dying from stroke.