Green tea has been crowned as one of the healthiest beverages on the planet, second only to water. It is chalk full of antioxidants and other nutrients which make up its rich health benefits. Tea is mostly native to India and China and even though its health benefits have been globally recognized in most countries, its reach has only recently pierced Western areas.
It has been recorded that out of the 78% of tea that is consumed worldwide is black, with only 20% of that coming from green tea consumption.
Difference Between Green Tea And Herbal Tea
All types of tea, except for herbal tea, are brewed and curated from the dried leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant. The levels of oxidation present in the leaves of each tea, determine they’re types. Green tea is only of the least processed of teas. Green tea is made from un-oxidised leaves and therefore it contains copious amounts of antioxidants and other beneficiating polyphenols.
Green Tea Facts
There are a number of key points about green tea. Some of them include;
- Green tea has been heavily consumed in places like China and India for thousands of centuries and has been used in ancient medicine.
- There are a number of different types of green tea which is available in the market.
- Green tea shows promise in improving a number of ailments including certain types of cancers and cardiovascular issues.
Why Drink Green Tea?
Green tea has been the center of ancient medicine for thousands of years, if not centuries in countries like China and other parts of Asia. It has shown properties and compounds which help reduce blood pressure and other health woes.
Even though tea comes from the same kind of plant, one of the biggest reasons that there are more health benefits in consuming green tea over its black counterpart is due to its processing. Black tea production focuses on fermentation of the tea leaves whereas green tea is completely the opposite. It is due to this basic fact that the levels of antioxidants and polypehnols is higher in green tea than it is in black tea.
How to Brew Green Tea?
- Loose leaf green tea or a tea bag.
- Hot boiled water.
- Boil water on a sauce pan till it reaches a boil.
- Let the water rest and sit till the temperature goes down to 70 degrees C.
- Pour in a tea bag or about 1 – 2 tea spoons of loose leaf green tea into the sauce pan and cover with a lid.
- Let the tea sit for a good 5 minutes.
- Serve and enjoy.
Green Tea Benefits
There are a number of scientifically backed p benefits of green tea. Some of them include;
- Green tea has been known to contain a number of bioactive compounds which help improve overall health. From reducing inflammation and preventing certain types of cancers due to the presence of polyphenols to helping prevent cell damage due to the presence of catechins.
- Due to the presence of certain compounds within green tea, it has been known to help improve brain function and make a person smarter. This is due to the presence of caffeine which is a stimulant. Caffeine blocks and inhibits the transmission of adenosine and simultaneously increasing the firing capacity of neurons, as well as the amount of neurotransmitters available, like dopamine and norepinephrine.
- Green tea has been known to help reduce fat and increase physical performance. This is due to the fact that green tea increases a person’s metabolic rate, as well as the level of fat oxidation. The presence of caffeine also improves physical performance by helping to mobilize fat cells, from within the fatty tissue as energy fuel sources.
- Green tea has shown promise in lowering the risk of developing certain types of cancers. cancer is caused when there is an uncontrollable growth of cells, this oxidative damage contributes to the development of cancer and the antioxidants in green tea help reduce that risk for cancers of the breast, ovaries, bladder, lung, throat, skin, stomach and prostate etc.
- It has been known to help maintain effective brain functioning well into old age. It has further been known to lower the risk of developing Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s among other issues. This is due to the presence of catechins which help prevent the progression of these neurodegenerative diseases.
- Green tea has shown positive impacts on dental and oral health. It has been known to kill bacteria within the mouth and help ward off influenza and streptococcus mutants which create plague within the mouth. Not only that but it has shown to aid in the management of bad breath.
- Studies have shown that green tea consumption can greatly improve insulin sensitivity and reduce blood sugar level to a more manageable degree.
- Green tea has been known to help reduce the possibility of developing cardiovascular diseases. This is done by improving the main risk factors for these diseases by increasing the level of antioxidants in the blood this protect the LDL particles from oxidizing.
- Green tea has been used as a weight loss aid by many. This is because green tea has shown to create short term boosts in a person’s metabolic rate.
- Studies conclude that daily consumption of green tea can help reduce the possibility of developing strokes.
- Green tea has been used to treat inflammatory skin issues like psoriasis and dandruff etc. those who were treated with green tea for their dry flakey skin showed significant improvement in improving the cells which regulate skin cell turn over.
Green Tea Side Effects
Green tea, although relatively safe to consume show side effects when it is consumed in excess.
- Green tea has been known to cause issues with diarrhea and constipation due to the presence of laxatives. As well as issues with increasing the levels of acid in the stomach when consumed in large amounts.
- Those with caffeine sensitivity have been known to get issues with developing migraines when green tea is used beyond the daily allowance of a maximum of 5, 8 ounce cups a day.
- Due to the presence of caffeine, green tea has shown to increase sleep issues. This is because chemical compounds which are present in green tea, block and inhibit the production of melatonin, the sleep hormone.
- Due to the large amounts of antioxidants, there have been issues with iron absorption. This leads to diseases such as anemia. To avoid this issue, adding a bit of lemon to the green tea can help mitigate those effects.
- Excessive consumption of green tea has been known to cause nausea and vomiting due to the presence of tannins.
- Caffeine has been known to decrease blood flow to the brain and can increase the chances of developing issues with dizziness and in rare cases, convulsions.
- Compounds in green tea, lower the level of fibrinogen in the blood. This compound is responsible for helping blood clot. With a decrease in this vital chemical. Oxidation of fatty acids is also hindered, leading to blood being a thinner consistency.