You may know that high homocysteine levels are a powerful risk factor for heart attacks. And you also may know that you can lower homocysteine with vitamin B12, folate, and vitamin B6.
But now there's an even better way to lower your levels than with supplements. And it's likely you have it sitting in your kitchen cabinet.
In a study of 232 women 70 and older, researchers found that polyphenols (powerful plant chemicals, often called antioxidants) lower homocysteine. And these particular polyphenols are most abundant in tea.
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The researchers found that women who drink more than two cups of tea a day reduced their homocysteine by 1.0 mmol/L. This is a significant decrease.
What's more interesting is that the tea intake did not influence the levels of folate in your blood. This strongly suggests that there's an unknown alternate way to lower homocysteine that we never knew existed until now.
This is exciting news for me. You know I am a big fan of the polyphenols in tea. I had no idea they might lower homocysteine.
While I like green tea the best, black tea is also loaded with polyphenols. Make sure any tea you choose is organic. And drink as much of it as you like.
Ref: Hodgson J.M., A. Devine, et al. "Drinking tea is associated with lower plasma total homocysteine in older women," Asia Pac J Clin Nutr, 2006; 15(2): 253-8.