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Causes Of Atherosclerosis
And Inflammation


Inflammation and plaque in the arteries

One probable cause of blocked arteries or atherosclerosis (cholesterol plaque in the arteries) progression is inflammation.

This inflammatory progression can develop further into

  • hardening of the arteries or arteriosclerosis

  • which leads to bleeding,

  • then blood clots,

  • then heart attacks, among other problems.

A new study tested the benefits of EGCG from green tea for inflammation in rats who developed atherosclerosis from eating a high fat diet.

The researchers measured inflammatory markers including C-reactive protein (CRP), erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), the total leucocyte count (WBC), differential leucocyte count, and platelet count.

EGCG reduces inflammation

Compared to controls, rats receiving EGCG during the high fat atherogenic diet, showed significantly lower levels of the inflammatory markers (Ramesh, Regulatory effect of eipgallocatechin gallate on expression of C-reactive protein and other inflammatory markers in an experimental model of atherosclerosis, Chem Biol Interactions, September 2009)

It is possible that reducing the inflammatory reaction in the arteries could reduce the risk some of the more serious effects of atherosclerosis like heart attacks and strokes.

However, this is preliminary research and has not yet been verified with human studies.

Currently, up to half the deaths in industrialized countries are attributed to heart disease.

Medical Illustration of the Human Heart Showing Various Degrees of Coronary Artery Disease
Medical Illustration of the Human Heart Showing Various Degrees of Coronary Artery Disease
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This page last updated by Sharon Jones.

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