Green tea has many great properties that make it healthy and beneficial. The caffeine level in green tea is not as high as coffee, oolong, or black tea, but enough to have a stimulating effect. Caffeine may even improve physical performance by activating fatty acids in fat tissue and making them available for energy, promoting fat burn and improving overall performance.
Green tea also has many polyphenols, micronutrients found in foods, that contain antioxidants called catechins that reduce inflammation and help protect cells against damage. The main one, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), is known to boost metabolism and breakdown fat.
Why is Green Tea Better Than Other Types of Teas?
The four main types of teas, oolong, black, green, and white, all come from the same plant: camellia sinensis. So, what makes them different? To start, black tea is oxidized while green tea is not. The tea leaves are oxidized by exposure to air so they can get darkened and grow more intense flavor. The downside to this is that the polyphenols are also oxidized and the antioxidants in the tea are not as strong.
While black tea also contains great properties, it does not have EGCG, one of the most powerful parts of green tea that accounts for all its health benefits. White tea does have the same antioxidants as green tea but not as much caffeine which would not be as helpful if you were drinking for weight loss. Green tea also contains more antioxidants than oolong tea, and the most catechins of all teas.
Though all teas have great properties, it would require more research to decide which is best for you based on what benefit you want to use it for.
What Are Some Health Benefits of Green Tea?
Studies show consumption of green tea reduces BMI, waist circumference, fat mass, and body fat in men and women. Those intaking high caffeinated green tea experienced greater weight loss than those consuming low caffeinated green tea. The higher the caffeine content, the longer people feel full and satiated, as caffeine is an appetite suppressant.
Beyond appetite supression, the EGCG in green tea works to burn fat by slowing down the enzyme that breaks down the hormone norepinephrine. By inhibiting the enzyme, norepinephrine is increased which helps breakdown fat in the body.
Green tea has been proven to reduce the risk of cancer in organs such as lungs, liver, and stomach. This study took place in Japan and its results were based on high-quality tea and high consumption of it each day. If these factors varied, the results would change as well.
The polyphenol EGCG kills tumor cells, stopping them from replicating. It can also inhibit blood vessels forming around the tumor. Another polyphenol in green tea, epigallocatechin (ECG), prevents leukemic cells from growing and multiplying in lab research.
Can Lower Risk of Heart Disease
Research has shown that consumption of green tea greatly lowers LDL cholesterol while keeping HDL cholesterol constant. LDL makes up most of the cholesterol in the body and increases the risk of heart disease. On the other hand, HDL absorbs cholesterol and takes it to the liver for disposal, showing the beneficial properties of green tea and its high concentration of catechins.
Based on research, green tea is shown to boost the immune system and protect against infectious diseases. The polyphenols in the tea (specifically EGCG) attach to the virus, then changing the shape so it is unable to spread.
Other parts of green tea also quicken immune responses when exposed to a toxin. It promotes the production of white blood cells that attack viruses when they spot them.
Anxiety and Depression
Research has shown a trend that drinking green tea can lead to a reduced risk of depression. The amino acids in green tea result in less stress and tension. A study conducted in Korea showed that those who drank green tea had a lower prevalence of lifetime depression by about 21%. Other research has shown that green tea directly impacts the nervous system and increases levels of calmness.
How Much Green Tea Should You Drink Every Day?
Most people drink green tea 3-5 times a day. This varies from person to person depending on what benefit you want to use it for. In order to gain all the benefits green tea has to offer, you should probably drink more than one cup a day.
The time you choose to drink your tea is personal preference, but it is best to drink green tea in the morning to jump-start the day and start it off calmly. Due to the caffeine in the tea, it is not recommended to drink it right before going to bed as it may disturb sleep.
What Are Some Side-Effects of Green Tea?
Though drinking green tea comes with many benefits, there can be some side effects. For those sensitive to caffeine, drinking a large amount of green tea daily can cause headaches, nervousness, irritability, or dizziness.
How to Drink Green Tea?
Green tea is great plain, but you can easily add to it for a different flavor. It’s as easy as adding a squeeze of lemon, honey, or any sweetener of your choice. Different spices and herbs like mint, rose flower, turmeric and ginger, or hibiscus can also be infused.
You can also buy flavor blends. Buddha Tea sells a variety of tea blends from plain green tea to matcha to cranberry green tea. Their teas are made with clean ingredients, non-GMO, and are 100% Kosher. With so many varieties to choose from, you are bound to find your favorite!
Green tea is a very easy and accessible way to improve health. It is important to research how much to drink based on which benefit you desire. The antioxidants packed in green tea make for a great and simple drink for your day-to-day life.
Choosing a healthy plant-based and vegan diet is most beneficial when it comes to:
Higher levels of energy;
Aids in energy and overall happiness;
Provides a sense of comfort and relief;
Could prevent major diseases such as obesity and diabetes;
Accomplish weight-loss and management; and
Improves mental and cognitive functioning.
There are really no excuses not to try healthier habits in your everyday life. If you are a man or woman looking for specific benefits of adopting healthier habits or just want to know about the general healing properties of herbs. Please remember to comment or post any health questions, or contact us directly!
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