Green tea and its nutrients
All kinds of tea, be it black, green or oolong, comes from the Camellia sinensis plant. The colour of the tea depends upon the amount of fermentation it has been through. Oolong tea is partially fermented, black tea is completely fermented and green tea is not fermented at all. It is produced by steaming fresh tea leaves at very high temperature.
That tea is rich in antioxidants is a given, but green tea is known to contain large amounts of polyphenols, thearubigins, epicatechins and catechins – all types of an antioxidant known as flavanoids.
Green tea and its health benefits
Heart healthy: Regular consumption of green tea has been known to reduce overall cholesterol levels, especially the bad LDL cholesterol which ultimately reduces the risk of heart attacks and heart diseases.
Fights cancer: Catechins present in green tea, are the flavanoids which fight free radicals that damage DNA and increase the risk of cancer. Since green tea is not put through a whole lot of processing, catechins, especially epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) are available in larger numbers.
Helps you lose weight: Can a simple activity like drinking green tea help you lose weight? Recent studies show that catechins help combat accumulated fat and aid in weight loss. Experts say that this fat reducing property catechins can help in a number of lifestyle disease, including obesity.
Boosts your immune system: The antioxidants in green tea help give your immune system a boost of good health which helps keep common ailments like the flu away.
Happy teeth: Catechins are also antibacterial, which is why they are so great in fighting tooth decay, gum diseases and bad breath. Additionally, they also reduce the formation of plaque.
Prevents diabetes: Preliminary studies show that green tea may help to prevent or at the very least, slow down the onset of diabetes. The same study also suggested that green tea acts a very good agent in lowering your blood sugar.
Improves bone health: Studies show that not only can drinking green tea help improve bone density and help reduce the risk of a fracture, it also encourages bone formation.
Reduces the risk of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s: Research shows that polyphenols present in green tea helps in improving concentration, prevents memory loss and helps reduce the accumulation of brain damaging proteins in your body.
Great for your skin: Not just as a drink, skin care products with green tea extracts are also wonderful for your skin as it helps your skin stay supple. The antioxidants in green tea are also known to help keep wrinkles at bay.
Experts suggest anywhere from 2-5 cups daily can help you rake in maximum benefit from this natural wonder. Try the decaffeinated version if you’re worried about the caffeine.