Antioxidants vs Atherosclerosis
Flavonoids in tea may “lower blood cholesterol concentrations and blood pressure”
In case you’ve never heard of flavonoids before, they’re natural products commonly found in vegetables, fruits, plants, bark, flowers, wine and tea such as palo azul.
There’s a ton of studies that have found numerous health benefits in flavonoids and these are are attributed to their anti-oxidative, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, anti-aging, anti-hypertensive, anti-bacterial, anti-mutagenic, anti-viral and anti-carcinogenic properties.
We’ve studied two medical reviews composed of findings from 327 different studies conducted specifically on flavonoids, and their findings revealed that "dietary flavonoids are associated with a lower risk of hypertension and CVD (cardiovascular disease).”
The scientists who published these reviews also observed that “the blood pressure level was reduced in patients with hypertension” after greater consumption of flavonoids.
Another finding suggests that flavonoids in tea may “lower blood cholesterol concentrations and blood pressure, thereby providing some protection against cardiovascular disease.”
These are the most flavonoid-rich foods: apples, pears, onions, strawberries, blueberries, celery, peppers, and teas such as palo azul
This is due to their ability to “inhibit LDL oxidation via a mechanism involving scavenging of free radicals.” A study established the importance of the oxidation of LDL cholesterol by writing that the “oxidative modification of LDL cholesterol is thought to play a key role during atherosclerosis.“
Free radicals are atoms with a single valence electron that cause damage to the body associated with diabetes, cancer, aging, atherosclerosis, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and many other diseases.
This happens because electrons like to be in pairs... and for this reason, free radicals look for "free" electrons in the body. This causes damage to cells, proteins, DNA and these damaged molecules can mutate, grow tumors, and damage the DNA code. Eventually, this cellular damage causes new cells to grow with defects and it will lead to aging and degenerative diseases.
*Here comes an extremely important finding!
Scientists in one study observed the “consumption of them (flavonoids) is associated with improvement in endothelial function (blockage of arteries) via vascular endothelial nitric oxide synthase and protein kinase B (Akt) activation.”
What is endothelial function?
The endothelium is a thin membrane that lines the inside of the heart and blood vessels. Endothelial cells release substances that control vascular relaxation and contraction, as well as enzymes that control blood clotting, immune function, and platelet adhesion.
Endothelial dysfunction has been shown to be important in predicting stroke and heart attacks due to the inability of the arteries to dilate completely. Dysfunction can result from high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, and smoking.
Studies have shown that endothelial dysfunction precedes the development of atherosclerosis, a chronic disease characterized by abnormal thickening and hardening of the artery walls. This can cause a stroke or a heart attack.
In other words...Endothelial dysfunction causes a blockage in the arteries that can lead to hypertension, stroke, or heart attack.
Finally, one study concluded the following: “Flavonoids can prevent injury caused by free radicals in various ways and one way is the direct scavenging of free radicals. This action protects the LDL particles and, theoretically, flavonoids may have preventive action against atherosclerosis.”
Below, we share with you the key results we found in over 300 studies conducted on the beneficial effects of flavonoids and palo azul tea.
Key findings from medical studies
“They (flavonoids) have miscellaneous favourable biochemical and antioxidant effects associated with various diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer's disease (AD), atherosclerosis, etc. “
• “Flavonoids have been reported to beneficially impact parameters associated with atherosclerosis, including lipoprotein oxidation, blood platelet aggregation, and vascular reactivity. Flavonoids inhibit LDL oxidation via a mechanism involving scavenging of free radicals.”
• “EP (palo azul) reduced the blood glucose, increased serum insulin, body weight, marker enzymes of hepatic function, glycogen, HDL, GK and HK while there was reduction in the levels of triglyceride, cholesterol.”
• “Studies have indicated the protective effects of flavonoids in cardiovascular diseases and these chemicals possess the bioactivity to positively affect against cardiovascular risk factors such as lipoprotein oxidation, dyslipidemia and endothelial dysfunction.”
• “Antioxidant, antithrombotic, anti-inflammatory, and hypolipidemic properties are illustrated to play a significant role in the lower cardiovascular mortality observed with higher flavonoid intake.”
• “Continued studies of the mechanisms underlying the biological effects of plant flavonoids may provide new strategies for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease.”
* Palo Azul is commonly referred to by its scientific name: Eysenhardtia polystachya / E. polystachya / E.P - Cyclolepis genistoides / C. genistoides - kidney wood - palo dulce