Green tea has been widely recognized as a health promoting substance. Green tea differs from other tea because the leaves of the tea plant are harvested, quickly heated and dried to prevent oxidation - which turns the green leaves to brown or black (black tea). When green tea is brewed it is green or a light brown in color. Green tea itself is rich in nutrients. It contains a load of amino acids (theanine, glutamic acid, tryptophan, glycine, serine, aspartic acid, tyrosine, valine, leucine, threonine, arginine, lysine) along with a variety of trace elements and vitamins such as calcium, magnesium, chromium, manganese, iron, copper, zinc, molybdenum, selenium, sodium, phosphorus, cobalt, stronium, nickel, potassium, fluorine, aluminum, vitamins B, C, E. But, the majority of green tea is compromised of polyphenols which are those amazing substances that have many health promoting benefits.
These polyphenols have been studied for their numerous benefits including reduction of inflammation, anti-cancer actions, prevention of cellular damage, protection from oxidative stress, and assist in the strength immune system. EGCG is one of the most powerful compounds found in green tea, and has been extensively studied for its impact on many disease states such as diabetes and heart disease. EGCG in studies has shown to improve LDL cholesterol levels, reduce blood sugar, reduce inflammation and works as a potent antioxidant! EGCG also helps the skin with anti-aging effects.
Green tea has also been studied in for its many effects on the brain. Green tea contains both caffeine and L-theanine. Caffeine, as we know, is a stimulant and can help with focus and alertness. L-theanine is an amino acid that easily crosses the blood brain barrier which makes it unique and able to have massive effect on how we feel mentally. It has been shown to boost neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine (feel good neurotransmitters) and GABA (calming neurotransmitters) which can produce positive impact on learning, mood, and reduces anxiety! In addition, recent research has shown that drinking green tea actually decreases the occurrence of dementia, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.
Green tea consumption is linked to the prevention of many types of cancer including lung, colon, mouth, stomach, small intestine, kidney, pancreas, esophagus and mammary gland. This is likely due to green tea’s potent antioxidant activity. Various studies have been performed showing reduction in cancer occurrence and lower incidence of cancer return with greater green tea intake. Green tea interferes with the process of cell replication which is necessary to prevent tumor growth. Green tea has also been paired with chemotherapy and showed better prognosis than chemotherapy alone.
Green tea also is effective in treating diarrhea and inhibits the H. Pylori infection (which can contribute to many gastrointestinal conditions). It also is useful against influenza if consumed earliest enough after exposure and against the Herpes Simplex virus. Anyone battling Candida should look into drinking green tea as it acts as an anti-fungal. The list goes on.. and on... with green tea drinkers having increased bone density, less risk of hip fractures, stronger immunity, lower blood pressure... And of course, green tea has been studied for its role in the fight against obesity. Recent studies show that green tea helps to reduce weight, primarily body fat, by increasing fat oxidation.
This ancient remedy is very well researched and supported. Including green tea into your daily routine is incredibly beneficial to your health. It is important to know that quality of the green tea matters. Lower quality green teas are very high in fluoride which can be stored in the body, so make sure you spend the extra few dollars to get a high quality organic tea. Drinking green tea is an easy and efficient way to promote wellness into daily life!
So grab a nice warm cup, add a bit of honey, and Happy Tea Drinking!
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Weinreb, O., Mandel, S., Amit, T., & Youdim, M. B. H. (2004). Neurological mechanisms of green tea polyphenols in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, 15(9), 506–516. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnutbio.2004.05.002
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Cancer and metastasis: prevention and treatment by green tea. (n.d.). Retrieved July 30, 2018, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3142888/