Green tea compound may protect heart health

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According to a new study, a molecule found in green tea might help to protect against atherosclerosis, which is a common cause of heart attacks and stroke.Atherosclerosis is a buildup of plaque within the arteries.Starting as fatty streaks on the walls of blood vessels, they slowly grow in size to become hardened plaques; this makes the arteries narrower, reducing blood flow.As the vessels become clogged, certain regions of the body receive less of the oxygen-rich blood that keeps them healthy.As atherosclerosis slowly develops, there are few symptoms. But, over the years, problems can begin to surface.

Depending on the site of the affected arteries, atherosclerosis could lead to a plethora of problems, such as coronary artery disease, which is a reduction of blood flow to the heart’s muscles, and stroke, which is characterized by reduced blood flow in part of the brain.Some risk factors for atherosclerosis are well known; they include being overweight, diabetes, and high blood pressure or cholesterol levels.Because some of these factors are increasing in prevalence, there is a push to find innovative ways to tackle atherosclerosis and stop it in its tracks.

 

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