Better Nutrition - - TREND WATCH -

Sci­en­tists in Great Bri­tain have discovered a com­pound in green tea that breaks up and dis­solves the plaques that clog blood ves­sels, caus­ing heart at­tacks and strokes. Re­searchers from Lan­caster Univer­sity and the Univer­sity of Leeds found that epi­gal­lo­cat­e­chin- 3- gal­late ( EGCG) binds to amy­loid fibers in the blood and con­verts them to smaller, sol­u­ble mol­e­cules that are less likely to dam­age blood ves­sels. ” The health ben­e­fits of green tea have been widely pro­moted, and it has been known for some time that EGCG can al­ter the struc­tures of amy­loid plaques as­so­ci­ated with Alzheimer’s dis­ease,” said David Mid­dle­ton, pro­fes­sor of chem­istry at Lan­caster Univer­sity. “Our re­sults show that this in­trigu­ing com­pound might also be ef­fec­tive against the types of plaques which can cause heart at­tacks and strokes.”

It’s doubt­ful, the re­searchers noted, that peo­ple can get enough EGCG from drink­ing green tea to pro­mote this ben­e­fi­cial ef­fect, but more tar­geted forms of the com­pound ( e. g., sup­ple­ments) may be ef­fec­tive. Their find­ings were pub­lished in the Jour­nal of Bi­o­log­i­cal Chem­istry.

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