Chemicals in green tea may help slow bone breakdown, according to a Chinese study.
Researchers at the Chinese University of Hong Kong exposed cultured bone-forming cells (osteoblasts) to a number of major ingredients of green tea for several days. One of the compounds, epigallocatechin, increased the activity of an enzyme that promotes bone growth by as much as 79 percent, United Press International reported.
Also, high concentration of epigallocatechin blocked the activity of osteoclasts, which are cells that break down or weaken bones. There was no evidence that epigallocatechin had any toxic effects on bone cells, the news service said.
The study was published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.
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I'd be curious about whether different varieties of green tea have different concentrations of epigallocatechin, or other beneficial chemicals. A lot of research seems to study broad categories of tea such as "green tea" or "black tea"...but there are such differences in how the various types of green tea are processed...these differences are reflected in drastic differences in flavor, aroma, even color or acidity of thea tea...surely some are more beneficial than others?September 24, 2009 - 5:20pm
Wow. That's a lot of help for your bones. Tea can do that! Yet another on a long list of reasons why to drink your tea. --TeaternitySeptember 24, 2009 - 5:45am