(Natural News) Obesity is a global epidemic that affects more than 650 million adults in the world. If it isn’t managed properly, this condition can lead to the development of health problems, such as cardiovascular disease. This outcome is partially attributed to the high levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) often associated with obesity. Although there are conventional drugs that aim to reduce LDL levels, many of these have been shown to cause side effects like impaired liver function. Because of this, scientists continue to explore alternatives like herbal medicines that can be used for this purpose.
Researchers from National Yang-Ming University and Taipei City Hospital found a natural way to reduce LDL levels in green tea. This widely consumed beverage is made from the leaves of Camellia sinensis, aptly called the tea plant. It contains polyphenols and flavonoids like epicatechin (EC), epigallocatechin (EGC), epicatechin gallate (ECG), and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). These compounds are responsible for the beneficial effects of green tea, including its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antihypertensive activities.
In this study from BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, the researchers wanted to determine the effects of drinking green tea on obese and overweight women. To do this, they conducted a randomized, double-blind, and cross-over placebo-controlled clinical trial. They then measured parameters like triglyceride, cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein, and LDL levels, as well as obesity-related hormone peptides like leptin, insulin, ghrelin, adiponectin, apolipoprotein (Apo) A1 and apolipoprotein B100.
The results of the study showed that women who drank green tea experienced a decrease in LDL levels. This is consistent with a previous study which showed that the beverage can decrease lipid and protein absorption as well as decrease glucose and fatty acid synthesis. In addition to this, an increase in leptin production was observed. This hormone plays an essential role in regulating lipid metabolism and has been shown to induce satiety signals in the brain. The other biochemical markers related to being overweight or obese did not exhibit significant changes.
From these results, the researchers concluded that drinking green tea is an easy way to improve LDL levels in overweight women.
More reasons to drink green tea
People who drink green tea can also enjoy the following health benefits:
- Relief from arthritis — Green tea has potent anti-inflammatory properties that can help relieve symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
- Protection against skin damage — Polyphenols in green tea enhances the ability of skin cells to repair themselves after ultraviolet (UV) ray damage. Furthermore, a study in the Journal of the German Society of Dermatology showed that this beverage can improve eczema and genital warts.
- Healthy blood sugar levels — People with Type 2 diabetes can include green tea in their diet to improve their blood sugar levels. This is because of the beverage’s beneficial effects on insulin resistance.
- Heightened mental alertness — Green tea contains healthy levels of caffeine that are enough to stimulate the nervous system and keep you awake, without causing anxiety and jitters.
- Reduced cancer risk — The EGCG in green tea has potent antioxidant properties, which neutralize cancer-causing free radicals. Additionally, a review in Molecules and Cells showed that drinking green tea can prevent the recurrence of certain types of cancer. (Related: Green tea polyphenols again shown to dramatically lower risk of breast and prostate cancers.)
If you’d like to read more news articles on the benefits of green tea, visit NaturalHealth.news.