Green tea consumption improves plasma lipid profiles in adults

Journal: Nutrition Research. 2006 November; volume 26, issue 11, pp. 604-607

Authors and affiliations: Susana Coimbra, Alice Santos-Silva, Petronila Rocha-Pereira, Susana Rocha, Elisabeth Castro. Faculdade de Farmácia, Serviço de Bioquímica, and Instituto de Biologia Molecular e Celular, Universidade de Porto, Porto, Portugal (Coimbra, Santos Silva, Rocha, Rocha-Pereira, Castro); Departamento de Química, Universidade Beira Interior, Covilhã, Portugal (Rocha-Pereira) [E-mail: ]


Cardiovascular disease is the major cause of mortality and morbidity in the Western world. Green tea prepared with leaves of Camellia sinensis is particularly rich in antioxidants, which seem to have a crucial role in atherogenesis.

The aim of our investigation was to evaluate the effect of green tea drinking on the lipid profile in 29 Portuguese subjects. The lipid profile included the measurement of:
n Total cholesterol
n High-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) [‘good’ cholesterol]
n Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol [‘bad’ cholesterol]
n Triacylglycerols
n Apolipoprotein A-I
n Apolipoprotein B
n Lipoprotein(a).

The measurements were performed at the beginning of the study, and after 3 weeks of drinking 1 liter of water, and after 4 weeks of drinking 1 liter of green tea daily. Tea was prepared every day at the same conditions of temperature, time of infusion, and concentration. No dilution effect was observed after water drinking.

After drinking green tea, a significant beneficial improvement in the lipid profile of subjects was observed in the subjects:
n A decrease in cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein [‘bad’]
cholesterol, apolipoprotein B, and ratio of cholesterol/HDL-C,
n But an increase in HDL-C [‘good’ cholesterol] and apolipoprotein A-I.

No significant differences were observed for triacylglycerol and lipoprotein(a).

Our data suggest that drinking green tea has a beneficial effect protecting against the risk for cardiovascular disease by improving blood lipid levels.

Keywords: green tea; risk factors; lipid profile; Camellia sinensis; cardiovascular diseases

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