“Bad” cholesterol sticks to the artery walls and, as others come along, they clump together. This narrows the artery passageway, making the heart work harder to transport blood around the body.
Over time, high cholesterol levels can lead to heart disease, which the NHS add is “a major cause of death in the UK”.
Symptoms of heart disease include chest pain (angina), heart attacks and heart failure.
This deadly disease comes about when the heart’s blood supply is interrupted by a build-up of fatty despots (including “bad” cholesterol) in the coronary arteries.
HDL cholesterol (high-density lipoprotein) is recognised as “good” cholesterol.
This is because HDL cholesterol has a higher protein to cholesterol ratio, enabling the lipoprotein to pick up excess cholesterol to take back to the liver.
When cholesterol is deposited in the liver, it’s broken down to later be excreted from the body.
Where does cholesterol come from?
John Hopkins Medicine identifies two sources of cholesterol: the diet and the liver.
It added that the “liver makes all the cholesterol the body needs”, so excess cholesterol from the diet needs to be worked off.
Aside from exercise and maintaining a healthy weight – highly recommended by John Hopkins Medicine – could green tea help lower cholesterol levels?
The research team at The Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences conducted a comprehensive literature review to identify relevant trials of green tea on cholesterol levels.
They elected 14 eligible randomised controlled trials with a total of 1,136 participants.
Data revealed that green tea consumption “significantly” lowered total cholesterol concentration by 7.20mg/dL.
The concentration of LDL “bad” cholesterol was also reduced by 2.19mg/dL.
However, there was no significant effect on the level of “good” cholesterol.
These results suggest that the consumption of green tea can help to lower cholesterol levels.
One type of green tea that you could consider incorporating into your diet is matcha tea.
The Diet and Nutrition commentary in Time magazine explained what matcha tea is.
“Matcha tea is made by taking young tea leaves and grinding them into a bright green powder,” it reported.
This powder is then whisked with hot water to be enjoyed as matcha green tea.