Flavonol of the month

Green tea is on everyone’s favorites list nowadays–including mine.

One of the reasons for this is its sky-high flavonol content. But if you just don’t like tea, that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on its benefits. At least, not according to the results of one recent study.

Flavonols are especially critical when it comes to your heart health. But as results of this research showed, how you consume these antioxidants isn’t half as important as how often you consume them.

Australian researchers reviewed data from more than 1,000 women over the age of 75. They assessed both flavonoid consumption and mortality rates from altherosclerotic vascular disease over a five-year follow-up period.

Turns out, women with the highest intakes of dietary flavonols faced a 72 percent lower risk of dying from atherosclerosis than women who consumed the least. And the effect was just as powerful, whether those flavonols came from tea or non-tea sources.

Translation: You don’t need to get your flavonols from tea in order to reap their heart health benefits. Any source–kale, berries, and yes, even chocolate–will do.

Tea and non-tea flavonol intakes in relation to atherosclerotic vascular disease mortality in older women. Br J Nutr. 2013 Apr 29:1-8.