Green Tea & Tendon Recovery.
Are you having any pains in your Tendons from running? The power of Green Tea is exceptional.
Green tea is a powerful anti-oxidant. It contains minerals that are important for your over all health and wellbeing. Many of its benefits have been attributed to: epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which is a major component of green tea.
Green tea has scientifically been proven to possess: anti-diabetic, anti-cancer, anti-obesity, anti-atherosclerotic, anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties (Suzuki, Miyoshi, & Isemura, 2012).
It also has anti-inflammatory properties which make it beneficial in preventing and treating inflammatory conditions such as liver disease and inflammatory tendon/muscle disorders.
More recently, it has been researched over its potential to assist in endurance exercise and the prevention and treatment of conditions such as tendinopathy, tendinitis, and delayed onset muscle soreness.
How does GT assist Tendinopathy?
A tendinopathy is a condition affecting tendons characterized by pain and degeneration of that tendon, often associated with repetitive overuse or overloading. Achilles tendinopathy is an example of a common tendinopathy which research shows affects approximately 11 % of runners and 8 % of dancers (Vieira, Guerra, Oliveira, et al., 2015). There are 2 types of tendinopathies. Reactive and degenerative tendinopathies. Reactive tendinopathies are generally a result of the tendon being placed under a rapid increase in loading or alternatively via direct trauma to the tendon. In contrast, degenerative tendinopathies generally occur as a result of chronic overloading. This makes the tendon more structurally disorganised and reduces its ability to deal with the load. Evidence suggests that the mechanism behind tendon degeneration involves oxidative stress. Free radicals are always present in the body, and are needed for bodily functions, but excessive production can result in the breakdown of the important building blocks of tendons such as proteoglycans. Decreased levels of proteoglycans in tendons have been associated with a higher incidence of tendinopathies. In order to prevent the breakdown of proteoglycans, free radicals in the body need to be kept to a minimum. Studies have shown that trauma as well as environmental and physiological stresses can result in an increase in free radical production (Bestwick & Maffulli, 2004). Green tea is high in antioxidants which fight, and in some instances, may even prevent cell damage. The antioxidants in green tea help control the amount of free radicals, reducing oxidative stress and therefore helping to maintain healthy tendons.
how does GT assist Tendinitis?
Tendinitis is an inflammation of a tendon. Glycine is an amino acid found in collagen -which is a building block of tendons. The amino acid has the ability to modulate inflammation as well as to influence local circulation. When a tendon becomes inflamed it becomes disorganised and weakened. Evidence shows that the consumption of green tea is beneficial to tendinitis treatment in that it helps to improve collagen fibre organisation. It also helps to improve the deposition of type 1 collagen fibres (Vieira, Guerra, Marcondes, Cintra, & Pimentell, 2015). Type 1 collagen is important for healthy tendons as its the main building block that makes up tendons (Franchi, Trirè, Quaranta, Orsini, & Ottani, 2007). Green tea also contains anti-inflammatory flavonoids which directly help to decrease inflammation. Overall, green tea helps to restore the tendon back to its original state.
How does GT assist with Exercise?
Green tea can enhance endurance exercises such as running or cycling. Muscles mostly rely on carbohydrates and fat as a source of fuel during endurance exercise. Green tea extract has been shown to improve endurance capacity by increasing the breakdown of fats which means that glycogen supplies aren’t depleted as readily (Murase, Haramizu, Shimotoyodome, Nagasawa, & Tokimitsu, 2004). This means that you have energy available to you to keep exercising for longer.
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Vieira, C. P., Guerra, F., Marcondes, A., Cintra, M., & Pimentell, E. R. (2015). Green tea and glycine aid in the recovery of tendinitis of the Achilles tendon of rats. Connective Tissue Research, 56(1), 50-58. doi: 10.3109/03008207.2014.983270
Vieira, C. P., Guerra, F. D. R., Oliveira, L. P. d., Almeida, M. S., Marcondes, M., & Pimentell, E. R. (2015). Green tea and glycine aid in the recovery of tendinitis of the Achilles tendon of rats.Connective Tissue Research, 56(1), 50-58. doi: 10.3109/03008207.2014.983270
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