Tea-drinking can be more than just for pleasure, it can also greatly improve your health! A new research study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology (January 7, 2011) showed daily consumption of rooibos tea can decrease the risk of developing heart disease. Rooibos (pronounced ROY bos)is a South African plant which is fermented and consumed as tea. Participants of the study consumed six cups of rooibos tea every day for six weeks, and they didn’t drink tea during the control period. Not only did the bad (LDL) cholesterol go down and the good (HDL) cholesterol go up, but there was also an increase in an important antioxidant known as glutathione. This powerful antioxidant helps to protect your arteries from free radical damage. Atherosclerosis, which occurs when the arteries fill up with cholesterol deposits or plaque, is not only due to high cholesterol levels. Cholesterol actually serves to “patch up” areas of inflammation on the vessel wall, and when this becomes chronic, it can clog your arteries and lead to a stroke or heart attack. This study implies rooibos tea can protect your blood vessel walls from inflammation and prevent heart disease.
Rooibos Tea May Help Prevent Heart Disease
Rooibos tea can be an excellent addition to your heart-healthy lifestyle. It is an herbal non-caffeinated beverage, so can be enjoyed any time of the day. Rooibos tea is commonly infused with many different flavors such as vanilla, mint, cinnamon, orange and various exotic fruits, to accommodate your taste preference. Enjoy a cup of tea for a healthy heart!
Dr. Laurie Steelsmith is a naturopathic physician and licensed acupuncturist in Honolulu, as well as author of the new book Natural Choices for Women’s Health, published by Random House. You can reach her and read her blog at www.DrSteelsmith.com. This article if for information only. Consult your health provider for medical advice.