3 Reasons Why Green Tea One of the Healthiest Drinks in the World
Posted on 14th June 2016 at 19:33
Christopher Ochner, PhD is quoted by the health website WebMD as saying, “it’s the healthiest thing I can think of to drink.”
Green tea is considered by many to be one of the world’s healthiest drinks, partly because it contains the most antioxidants of almost any other tea. Researchers often speak highly of green tea, but why is Green Tea so healthy and what health benefits can it give us?
In today’s article I will list my top 3 benefits of drinking Green Tea every day.
It is loaded with antioxidants
There are natural chemicals in green tea called polyphenols which are thought to be extremely anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic. The most studied and most bioactive polyphenol found in green tea is Epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) which has been shown to be extremely effective at eliminating free radicals. Free radicals are unstable oxygen molecules that can damage your cells, organs and body as a whole, and are believe to accelerate the progression of cancer, cardiovascular disease and age related diseases, so their elimination from the human body is a big plus.
Green tea is approximately 20% to 45% polyphenols by weight, of which 60% to 80% are catechins such as EGCG. These catechins are antioxidants that are said to possibly help with fighting and preventing cell damage. So adding Green Tea into your diet can help offset the effects of a bad diet, and help bring your body back to optimal balance.
Green Tea Can Improve Brain Function and Make You ‘Smarter’
The key ingredient in green tea is caffeine which as we all know is a stimulant. However, because Green Tea contains about ¼ less caffeine than coffee, it means that its suitable for people who are very sensitive to caffeine, but would like to get the mental kick that caffeine gives without becoming a jittery mess.
Caffeine works by blocking Adenosine in the brain which is an inhibitory neurotransmitter. By blocking Adenosine it will allow your neurons fire more frequently and increase the concentration of neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine. Essentially what this means is that caffeine allows your brain to function at a more optimal level and make decisions quicker.
Green tea contains more than just caffeine, there is also the amino acid L-theanine, which can cross the blood-brain barrier with ease. This effectively means that it doesn’t have to be transported into the brain, it can come in as it pleases. L-theanine has been shown to have an anti-anxiety effect due to its ability to increase the activity of GABA. Like caffeine, L-theanine also increased the production of dopamine and improves the production of alpha waves in the brain.
There have been a number of studies showing that caffeine and L-theanine can have a synergistic effect and combining the two, as green tea does, is very effective at improving brain function.
Green Tea Increases Fat Burning
Chances are at some point in your fat loss journey you will have taken or at least looked at ‘fat burning’ supplements. Although there is no such thing as a supplement that can ‘burn fat’, you can get pretty close with some of the ingredients you find in the supplements these days. The ingredient found in almost all of these supplements is, of course, green tea or green tea extract. Not a great surprise as human controlled trials have shown that green tea boosts the metabolic rate of the body which in turn can lead to increased fat burning potential; this is supported by the results from human controlled trials.
In one study conducted on 10 healthy men, green tea increased energy expenditure by 4 percent, that may not sound like a lot but its these little things that add up to big changes. Another study showed that drinking green tea increased fat oxidation (the use of fatty acids for energy) by 17 percent, indicating that green tea may selectively increase the body’s potential to burn of fat for fuel as opposed to your carbohydrate stores. However, it needs to be stated that some studies on green tea haven’t found any increase in metabolism, which could mean that the effect of green teas on metabolism and potential fat burning is down to the individual.
Another way green tea can improve fat loss is through improving blood sugar management. For those of you who have read my free EBook you should already be familiar with how important insulin and blood sugar are when it comes to fat loss. If your blood sugar is out of control, then you are putting yourself in the perfect state to gain and store unwanted body fat. New studies have shown that green tea can improve insulin sensitivity and reduce blood sugar, this includes one study in Japan found that those who drank the most green tea had 42% lower risk of developing Type II diabetes – which is a disease which is fundamentally caused by poor blood sugar management over a long period of time. According to a review of 7 studies with a total of 286,701 individuals (ie statistically significant), green tea drinkers had an 18% lower risk of becoming diabetic over their lifetime.
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