Since you live on the planet Earth, you’ve probably heard about one or more of the health benefits of green tea. Well, add one more to the list! A recent study reveals that green tea may help reduce the severity of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). This is exciting news, as more than 2.1 million Americans suffer from this type of arthritis and there is no known cure. Keep reading for more information on this discovery.What is Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Rheumatoid Arthritis affects over 2.1 million people in the United States alone. Most commonly, Rheumatoid Arthritis causes stiffness, inflammation, and swelling in the joints. These adverse affects are represented by joint pain and possible destruction of the joints themselves. It’s also been known to cause inflammations of the lungs and eyes.
There’s no known cure for the disease but there are treatments. Most include some form of anti-inflammatory that helps reduce the pain and swelling in the joints.The Study on Green Tea and Rheumatoid Arthritis
Recently, a study was done by researchers at the University of Maryland and Rutgers University which shows a link between green tea and the severity of Rheumatoid Arthritis.
The experiment was done on rats which drank water infused with green tea (the control in the experiment was rats with normal water). After approximately three weeks the rats were injected with a protein that induces arthritis (Bhsp65). They found that in the rats who had consumed the green tea, the severity of the arthritis was significantly reduced.
Green tea has many antioxidants which have been known to reduce inflammation already, but no research had been done to prove as such.
Scientifically speaking, the tea reduced something called cytokine IL-17 (inflammatory substance) and increased something called cytokine IL-10 (an anti-inflammatory substance).
Green tea is already heralded as the most consumed beverage in the world (besides water) and now it adds another notch to its belt.
This comes as great news to those who may suffer from Rheumatoid Arthritis because, since it doesn’t have a known cure, any way to alleviate the pain is promising news. Additionally, green tea is a natural drink which is an alternative to anyone who may be skeptical of anti-inflammatory pills or treatments such as cortisone injections. Other potential treatments include fish oil and weight loss. Swimming is an ideal exercise because of it’s leniency on the joints.What Happens if RA is Left Untreated?
If Rheumatoid Arthritis is left untreated the individual will continue to suffer and may eventually have to endure a joint-replacement surgery. Many sufferers lose daily functions of their joints within the first five years, followed by the inability to do things such as simple tasks or a daily job within the next five. After that, the disability level can be potentially substantial, with possible confinement to use of a walker or wheelchair.
Luckily, with the addition of green tea to treatment options, Rheumatoid Arthritis sufferers have an additional ally at their side. The effects of the tea, in addition to other treatments, may reduce the level of disability greatly for sufferers. Instead of losing the ability to work in five years, persons may not lose work for 15 years, or perhaps not at all. The Future of Green Tea and RA
Green tea is certainly not a cure, nor is fish oil or losing weight. But it’s a step in the right direction. The goal currently is to limit the pain for those who have Rheumatoid Arthritis. In finding new ways to reduce pain, such as green tea, eventually long term treatments and cures may develop.
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