Central Coast people with high blood cholesterol are being targeted in a new study to determine whether regular consumption of green tea can help lower blood cholesterol levels.
Studies have already found links between drinking green tea and better health outcomes, including protection from heart disease.
Dr Paul Roach from the Faculty of Science and Information Technology at the University of Newcastle's Central Coast campus said the study would focus on a substance called catechin and its effect on cholesterol.
"It is well known that high blood cholesterol is one of the three major risk factors for heart disease, along with high blood pressure and smoking," Dr Roach said.
"Our earlier research found that catechin, which is found predominantly in green tea, lowered blood cholesterol levels in laboratory tests using cells in culture and animal models.
"We are now ready to test our results in humans and are inviting Central Coast residents to take part in a simple four week study."
Researchers are seeking male and female volunteers aged between 18 and 65 who are generally in good health but have moderately elevated blood cholesterol levels (between 5.5 and 7.5) and are not currently taking cholesterol-lowering medication.
Volunteers will need to take a green tea catechin for four weeks and provide blood samples before and after the study.
"This is an exciting study that could make helping to manage high blood cholesterol as easy as enjoying a simple cup of green tea," Dr Roach said.
Interested volunteers can call 0413 550 772 or email Paul Roach or Nenad Naumovski
Media opportunity: Dr Paul Roach is available for interview and vision/picture opportunities today, Tuesday 20 October, between 10am and 1pm at the NSW Department of Primary Industries Somersby Field Station.