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Coffee and Tea Can Help Promote a Healthy Liver

Update Date: Aug 17, 2013 11:03 AM EDT

Are you a coffee or tea person? Choosing one beverage over the other will not jeopardize one's health as a new study found that both drinks could promote a healthy liver. Several studies have found mounting evidence that coffee and tea have their own respective health benefits when consumed in moderation. Of course, studies have found that when coffee and tea are consumed in large amounts, they could become detrimental to one's health. In a new study, an international team of researchers found that coffee and tea share a health benefit due to the caffeine present in both beverages.

In this study, the team of researchers headed by Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School and the Duke University of Medicine looked at the effects of caffeine on fatty liver. According to the statistics, nearly 70 percent of people with diabetes and obesity experienced non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is dangerous and hard to monitor because there are no effective treatments for it as of right now. People with this disease are recommended to control it through strict diet and exercise. In order to find another way of staving off this disease, the team led by associate professor and research fellow, Paul Yen, M.D. and Rohit Sinha, Ph.D. from the Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School's Cardiovascular and Metabolic Disorders Program in Singapore, utilized cell culture and mouse models.

The researchers created mouse models that had fatty livers by feeding them a diet high in fat. The researchers administered caffeine and observed it effects on the fatty livers of these mice. The researchers found that caffeine was able to trigger the lipids in the liver cells to metabolize, which then helped lower the amount of fat in the liver. The researchers stated that the amount of caffeine they administered to the mouse would be equivalent to four cups of either coffee or tea a day. 

"This is the first detailed study of the mechanism for caffeine action on lipids in liver and the results are very interesting," Yen said according to Medical Xpress. "Coffee and tea are so commonly consumed and the notion that they may be therapeutic, especially since they have a reputation for being 'bad' for health, is especially enlightening."

The study's findings will be published in Hepatology

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