Sencha spotlight: The health benefits of Japanese tea (Part two)
In addition to improving heart health and containing high levels of antioxidants, catechins have also been studied to:
- Prevent the onset of hypertension.
- Suppress the levels of cholesterol.
Preventing the onset of hypertension
Hypertension or high blood pressure is considered a risk factor for lifestyle-related diseases such as heart attacks. While there are many various causes for hypertension including lifestyle habits, one key factor is a substance known as angiotensinogen.
Angiotensinogen is responsible for constriction blood in the vessels when it is converted from angiotension I to angiotensionn II. The catechins found in Japanese green tea however, have been shown to be able to suppress this conversion.
In a survey of 40,000 participants, the stroke mortality rate for frequent green tea drinkers was reportedly 35% lower for men and 42% lower for women. This data was made in comparison with participants who did not consume any green tea. (Shinichi Kuriyama et al., JAMA, 2006)