Green tea, dubbed as the “healthiest drink,” was used in Ayurveda and Chinese medicines to heal wounds, control bleeding, improve mental and heart health and manage blood pressure. Even today, researchers are trying hard to prove the positive effects of green tea on several health conditions, including diabetes and weight loss. Today, we’ll have a look at a few of the proven benefits of green tea.
What Is Green Tea?
Contrary to what most people think, green tea does not come from a green plant. All kinds of tea, except herbal teas, are obtained from the Camellia sinensis bush. It’s not the plant, but the level of oxidation that determines the type of tea. Green tea is one of the least processed types of tea, which gives it a green tinge. This also explains the high levels of polyphenols and antioxidant present in this tea.
Health Benefits Of Green Tea:
Let’s look at some of the proven health benefits of green tea below.
- The Compounds Present In Green Tea Improve Health:
The potent antioxidants like catechins and flavonoid loaded in green tea reduce the formation of free radicals in the body, thereby protecting the molecules and cell from damage. Another potent compound present in green tea is Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG) antioxidant that has been proven to treat various diseases. The small amounts of mineral in green tea are also highly beneficial for the body.
- Green Tea Improves Brain Functioning:
Green tea may not contain as much caffeine as found in coffee, but the content is enough to produce a response, without causing jittering, which is commonly associated with too much of caffeine consumption. Caffeine, by blocking adenosine, an inhibitory neurotransmitter, increases the firing of the neurons and concentration of neurotransmitters like norepinephrine and dopamine. Besides, caffeine is also proven to improve memory, reaction time, mood and vigilance and reduce dementia as well.
- Relieves From Stress And Depression.
Theanine, the amino acid found in the leaves of green tea provide tranquilizing and relaxing effect to the brain. But for that effect, you need to drink it at least six times a day. Since it contains low levels of caffeine, it won’t affect your health much.
- Green Tea Helps To Lose Weight:
Green tea is one of the active ingredients in most of the fat burning supplements. That’s because it has been proven to boost the metabolic rate and increase the fat burning process. (You can read more about this in our post Green Tea For Weight Loss: Is It A Myth Or Truth? ). It also improves the body performance by mobilizing the fatty acids from our fat tissues and using them as energy.
- Green Tea Prevents Heart Disease:
A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association concluded that green tea consumption could reduce mortality caused due to cardiovascular or heart diseases. This effect is primarily because of the high levels of polyphenols present in it. Another study also found that drinking 2 to 10 cups of green tea could modestly reduce low or bad cholesterol in the body by increasing antioxidant content in the blood. “Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association” found that green tea could also reduce the risk of stroke.
Green tea also keeps the lining of the blood vessels relaxed and more vigilant to withstand the fluctuation in blood pressure. It also prevents the formation of clots, one of the primary causes of heart attack.
- The Antioxidants Present In Green Tea Can Prevent Cancer:
Uncontrollable growth of the cells is the leading cause of cancer, followed by oxidative damage. Green tea, being an excellent source of antioxidants can reduce the risk of cancer to a great extent. Researchers also opine that the high levels of polyphenols in green tea are believed to kill the cancerous cells and even prevent them from growing.
Several studies have concluded that women who drank green tea daily were 22% less susceptible to developing breast cancer (1). Another study found that men who drank green tea had 48% lower chance of developing prostate cancer (2).
Moreover, a study conducted on over 69,000 Chinese women found that people who drank green tea had 57% less risk of having colorectal cancer (3).
- Green Tea Protects The Brain From Parkinson’s And Alzheimer’s:
Consumption of green tea will not just improve your memory, but will also protect in the old age from Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases, two of the most common neurodegenerative disorders. It protects the brain cells from dying and even restores the damaged brain cells. This effect is because of the catechin and other bioactive compounds in it.
- Green Tea Lowers The Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes:
Type 2 diabetes has been spreading like an epidemic in the past few years. It increases the blood sugar levels and even thwarts the body’s ability to produce more insulin. Studies have revealed that green tea improves the insulin sensitivity to reduce the blood sugar levels (4).
A Japanese study found that those who drank green tea had 42% lowers chances of developing type 2 diabetes (5).
- Green Tea Treats Inflammatory Sin Diseases:
One of the most vital benefits of green tea. Studies have found that green tea could treat skin disorders like flaky skin and psoriasis. The research was conducted on animals with red, dry, flaky, patchy and inflamed skin cells. Those who were treated with green tea displayed a significant reduction in the growth of skin cells. A regular consumption will also delay the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
- Improves Dental Health:
The catechins present in the green can also improve dental health by inhibiting the growth of Streptococcus mutants. So no more, tooth decay and cavities. Or gargle with green tea to lower the risk of caries (6). Another remarkable benefit of green tea is that it combats bad breath.
- A Potent Anti-Viral And Anti-Bacterial Agent:
Catechins in green tea are potent antiviral and antibacterial agents, making them highly effective against infections like influenza, bronchitis, and others. This, in turn, will strengthen your immune system.
Note: Since green tea decreases the absorption of folic acid and iron in the body, it is best consumed between the meals that drinking it as a mealtime beverage. Or keep the time gap between eating foods rich in folic acid and iron and green tea 1 to 2 hours.
I’ve been drinking green tea twice every day and have noticed remarkable benefits, weight loss being one of them. So I would definitely recommend you all to include it in your diet.
We hope you enjoyed reading about the benefits of green tea. Have you included green tea in your diet? Did you notice any of these benefits of green tea on your body? Let us know in the comment section below!