Simple, savory, and nutritious, the goodness of green tea not only fascinates but overwhelms. Today, green tea has almost become synonymous with good health and improving lifestyle.
I am not saying that green tea is a magic tonic that will alleviate all your health concerns. But, it would be nice to know how the drink is immensely helpful for you, and more importantly, why.
Let’s get into the details of some important benefits of green tea, so next time you brew a cup, you can feel good about yourself.
Before discussing the health benefits, some of you may be wondering….
What Is Green Tea? How is it different than Black Tea?
Green tea, black tea, and oolong tea all come from the leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant. Each of them goes through varying degrees of oxidation and withering.
Green tea leaves are dried and processed for lesser time than that of black teas. Thus, the leaves retain their green color. Depending on their variety, green tea’s leaves undergo pan frying and steam-heating and very little oxidation. As a result, they retain their antioxidants. Black tea leaves, on the other hand, are heavily fermented and are allowed to wilt and turn brown.
Now, let’s understand why you should drink green tea.
Packed with an Abundance of Antioxidants
Some of you may be thinking, what are antioxidants good for?
Here’s why…when we eat our food, the body processes it to convert food to energy. Many endogenous systems processes like this release byproducts into our body known as free radicals. They are free, reactive oxygen and nitrogen which adversely affect lipids, proteins, and DNA in the body. Consequently, they damage our cells in the brain and other body-parts and thereby trigger many diseases in our system.
To counter free radicals, we require antioxidants to balance the functioning of our physiological systems. One simple way to consume them is by drinking green tea which brings positive health effects. American Society for Nutritional Sciences in their clinical trials also suggests that the antioxidants from green tea eliminate the free radicals
Improves Heart Condition
Studies have shown that green tea lowers cholesterol levels which is one of the root causes of heart diseases. A study by Harvard Medical School on Japanese adults found that the ones who drank more than 5 green teacups in a day possess 26% lower risk of getting a stroke or heart attack.
Further research found out that people who drank green tea have considerably wider arteries and lower blood pressure levels. It prevents atherosclerosis, a primary cause of a major cardiovascular disease.
Further studies have found that regular and long-term intake of green tea lowers bad cholesterol and doesn’t impact good cholesterol. Not only this, green tea can sensitize cells which metabolize sugar more efficiently, thus keeping Type-2 Diabetes symptoms in check.
Dropping the Kilos
Epigallocatechin gallate and antioxidants in green tea improve the body’s metabolism and boost fat burning hormones. A study published in US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health found that ingestion of acute green tea increases fat-oxidation during moderate intensity exercises.
Dr. Rupali Datta, Consultant Nutritionist, Chikitsa NMC says:
“Green tea alone does not melt the fat off, so you still need to eat healthy and exercise. It, however, is a great calorie-free drink (no sugar or honey) to replace sugary drinks by cutting out the extra calories.”
Green tea has anti-inflammatory properties coupled with an abundance of antioxidants. This makes it a perfect foil for our skin to stay young. It delays aging of skin, wrinkles, and lines.
You can also use green tea in the form of tea bag for treating dark blemishes near the eye. Green tea has tannins which treat puffy eyes by shrinking the blood vessels around the eye. For dark circles, they dilate the blood vessels under the eyes.
That’s not it! Some Japanese and American studies state that a regular diet with green tea enhances life expectancy and promotes overall longevity.
Tea doesn’t possess too much caffeine like coffee. So, we do not feel much of the jittery effects of caffeine and largely experience its benefits of sustained, calm energy. A case in point, caffeine enhances brain health by blocking activities of an inhibitory neurotransmitter- Adenosine, which releases neurons. Green tea contains an amino acid L-theanine, which produces anti-anxiety effects and forms a synergy with caffeine.
Green tea also assists in reducing risks of serious brain diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer. Some studies have shown that this beverage also improves memory and cut down the risk of dementia and mental decline.
The antioxidants present in the tea also prevent the brain from oxidative stress. Green tea certainly has a calming effect on brain.
May Reduce Cancer Risks
The direct mechanism of green tea for cancer prevention hasn’t been established yet. But, green tea has shown to activate the cancer-fighting enzymes in the body.
The good news is that cancer prevention and green tea consumption already has a direct relationship. As per research was done by livescience.com on a woman with breast cancer, the polyphenols in green tea slow down the growth of tumor cells. Similar results have been found with men with prostate cancer.
So, green tea can prevent cancer in both sexes which make it simply remarkable.
When you get sick, doctors give you a prescription for antibiotics. We have all been there, every season. Is this the best natural remedy? Certainly, not! How about trying a natural herbal plant-based remedy?
I am not saying that green tea will conjure you out of the bacterial infection. But, it can’t hurt, right? Green tea contains antioxidants known as catechins. Two of them, Epicatechin Gallate (ECG) and Epigallocatechin Gallate prevent bacterial infection and its development. Studies have also shown that green tea drinkers have better oral hygiene. This amazing beverage prevents tooth decay owing to its anti-inflammatory properties.
Green tea may not be the cure for all your woes. But, adding green tea to some home remedies will certainly elevate your diet and help you become healthier.
Sipping a cup of green tea certainly helps you to calm down, think positively and relax. It becomes a part of a healthy lifestyle. You slow down and feel refreshed. Due to the presence of a natural chemical ingredient L-theanine, green tea gives you a soothing and calming effect. Thus, you can focus on important things.
Perhaps, the best benefit which you can get right away is to just take a tea break. Gather your friends and family and engage in light discussion. Make your conversation into conver-sensation!
The health benefits of green tea are tremendous. There are still many more to be discovered and proven by researchers. So, it’s time to adopt this great beverage as a part and parcel of your healthy lifestyle.
The buzz around the health benefits of this beverage is not a fad, but in fact proven by many scientific studies. The world is now accepting this drink and the numerous health benefits that come along with it.