Fat Mass and Bone Mineral Density
In postmenopausal women, green tea supplementation has been associated with a decrease in fat mass as well as benefits to bone mineral density. It is not known, however, whether these effects are a result of green tea’s catechins or caffeine. To determine whether green tea does indeed benefit fat mass or bone mineral density, Allison Dostal and colleagues from the University of Minnesota (St. Paul, MN) conducted a sub-study in 121 overweight/obese postmenopausal women. During the study, subjects were administered a decaffeinated green tea extract providing 843 mg of EGCG, or a placebo, daily for 12 months. (This study was a sub-study of the larger Minnesota Green Tea Trial, which included 937 women.(2))
At the end of the randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, the researchers found no changes in the green tea subjects’ body mass index, total fat mass, percent body fat, or bone mineral density when compared to placebo, nor did they see changes in circulating hormones. There were, however, small improvements in tissue and gynoid fat percentage (fat distributed around the hips, breast, and thighs) in those with higher body mass index.
2. Dostal AM et al., “Long-term supplementation of green tea extract does not modify adiposity or bone mineral density in a randomized trial of overweight and obese postmenopausal women,” The Journal of Nutrition, vol. 146, no. 2 (February 2016): 256–264
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