Researchers Discovered How Tea May Reduce Blood Pressure

In a recent study, researchers from the University of California, Irvine (UCI) and the University of Copenhagen, in Denmark, found that antioxidants in tea open ion channels and can relax the muscles that line blood vessels, which may lower the blood pressure.Researchers Discovered How Tea May Reduce Blood Pressure

The researchers demonstrated, for the first time, that two antioxidants in tea, known as catechins, open a protein channel in the membranes of the smooth muscle cells that line blood vessels. This allows positively charged potassium ions to leave the cells.

For their study, the scientists used computer modeling and mutated versions of the channel protein to show that the two catechins bind to a section that senses voltage changes.

Senior study author Prof. Geoffrey Abbott, of the Department of Physiology & Biophysics at the UCI School of Medicine, explains: “This binding allows the channel to open much more easily and earlier in the cellular excitation process.”

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