Green tea has shown and proved to have many health benefits. There’s no doubt that one of the most important ones is its ability to lower high cholesterol levels.
As you may know high cholesterol may form plagues in the walls of arteries – a condition known as atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis in its turn can cause coronary heart disease and other forms of cardiovascular disease.
As you see the ability of green tea to lower high cholesterol is very important. Green tea may prevent serious cardiovascular diseases, caused by long-standing high LDL cholesterol levels, such as:
- angina pectoris
- myocardial infarction (heart attack)
- transient ischemic attacks
- peripheral artery disease
Green tea effectively lowers LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, lipid peroxides, and fibrinogen. It also improves the HDL cholesterol levels (most often referred to as “good cholesterol”) and normalizes the LDL cholesterol levels (most often referred to as “bad cholesterol”, which is incorrect).
Low-density lipoproteins particles (LDL) and high-density lipoproteins particles (HDL) are the carriers of cholesterol in the bloodstream.
LDL particles transport cholesterol and triglycerides to the arteries – away from cells and tissues that produce more than they use, towards cells and tissues, which are taking up cholesterol and triglycerides.
LDL increased levels are associated with many cardiovascular diseases. That is why the cholesterol inside LDL lipoproteins is called “bad cholesterol”.
As I mentioned above – that is incorrect, because the cholesterol inside the LDL and HDL lipoproteins are identical. Still, it is not the cholesterol contained within all the LDL particles that are bad, but it’s the concentration and size of the LDL cholesterol particles that are being transported.
HDL particles are the smaller than LDL. HDL particles can remove cholesterol from atheroma within arteries, and transport it back to the liver for excretion or re-utilization. That is why HDL cholesterol is referred to as “good” and HDL particles serve as protection to your body’s cardiovascular health.
LDL cholesterol levels below 100 mg/dl used to be considered optimal, corresponding to reduced risk for heart disease. But for the past few years more clinical researchers have recommended optimal levels below 50 mg/dl.
LDL cholesterol levels higher than 190 mg/dl are considered to be very high.