Research at Ohio State University found a link between green tea and decreased obesity in mice, according to a recent study. The work focused on laboratory mice fed a diet containing a 2% green tea extract associated with a reduction in inflammatory biomarkers associated with poor health and a reduction in obesity. The study found that changes in gut bacteria can contribute to the beneficial effects.
Intestinal microbiota, often referred to as "intestinal bacteria," has been implicated in human health in various ways, possibly resulting in both positive and negative changes in the body due to the diet and general health of the individual. Negative changes in the intestinal microbiome have previously been associated with an increased risk of obesity, but positive changes by green tea extract may have the opposite effect.
The positive effects were observed in laboratory mice fed a diet with green tea extract, in contrast to another group of mice that did not receive green tea. The diet lasted 8 weeks. During this time, half of the mice were fed a high-fat diet that was supposed to cause obesity, and the other half were fed a normal diet. Half of each group also received green tea extract.
In the high-fat diet group, the green tea extract-fed mice increased 20 percent less than the high-fat diet mice that did not receive green tea extract. The green tea group also showed lower insulin resistance and less adipose tissue and intestinal inflammation. The green tea diet also seemed to help reduce endotoxin movement from the gut into the bloodstream and leaky gut.
Although both normal diet mice and high-fat mice fed green tea extract had positive effects, the changes were more pronounced in the high-fat diet group. How would that translate to a human diet? According to the lead author of the study, Richard Bruno, the amount given to the mice was equivalent to one who drinks about 1
Further research is still needed to determine if these positive effects would apply to humans as well. In addition, there is a possibility that supplements of green tea extract may not show the same positive changes as compared to liquid green tea due to the metabolism of catechins.