Fat-burner, energy-booster, detoxifier, cancer preventative – is there anything green tea can’t do?
No doubt you’ve heard that green tea is good for you. The health properties of Camellia sinensis have been known throughout East Asia for more than 5000 years. In fact, the Zen priest Eisai was one of the first to describe how drinking this tea can benefit the five vital organs in his book Kissa Yojoki (Book of Tea), written in 1191.
Today, with hundreds of scientific studies confirming its long list of benefits, Camellia sinensis continues to be one of the most sought-after health tonics in the world.
Green tea is loaded with antioxidants
It is rich in a special type of polyphenol called catechins. Although both green and black tea contain polyphenols, the content is much higher in green tea. The most important of these catechins is epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG). This awkward-sounding compound is the key to protecting your body from oxidative damage caused by harmful free radicals, which goes a long way in reducing inflammation in the body and your risk of chronic disease. And that’s just the beginning of the many health benefits provided by this super-tea. (1, 2, 3)
Green tea is a great fat burner
Research has shown that EGCG helps to inhibit an enzyme that breaks down the hormone norepinephrine. Norepinephrine is responsible for activating the ‘fight or flight’ response, which causes the body to start burning fat. When norepinephrine is uninhibited, there’s more of it – which means you burn more fat – faster!
The caffeine in Camellia sinensis also ramps up your metabolism. Studies have shown that caffeinated green tea has the best results when it comes to weight loss. The catechins in it have a positive effect on both weight loss and weight maintenance, suggesting that drinking it regularly can help keep you trim.
One study showed that when overweight, adults drank caffeinated green tea every day for 90 days, they lost an average of 2.64lb and just under an inch from their waistlines – without increasing their exercise or changing their diet!
Green tea lowers the risk of cancer
If shedding pounds isn’t enough to convince you, here’s another good reason – it may help to prevent cancer.
Recent research shows that regularly drinking green tea lowers the risk of developing breast cancer by 20-30%, colorectal cancer by 42% and prostate cancer.
Numerous scientists have shown that EGCG and green tea extract work together to prevent cancer. It appears that the combination of EGCG and anticancer compounds in green tea can enhance anti-cancer activity against cancerous cells. This has led scientists to suggest that Camellia sinensis may be an effective preventive for primary cancers.
It can protect your brain and reduce your risk of developing dementia
The polyphenols in Camellia sinensis harbour important neuroprotective properties that bind with harmful compounds in your body, helping to protect your brain cells. When you drink it, your body breaks down the polyphenols and they produce compounds that prevent toxins from destroying brain tissue.
Scientists say that the compounds produced when your body digests green tea may be even more effective in preventing Alzheimer’s than taking undigested forms of the tea.
It can reduce bad breath
Nobody likes bad breath! But green tea may help. The catechins in it have been found to inhibit the growth of bacteria in the mouth, reducing the risk of bad breath. Several studies have shown that EGCG harbours powerful anti-bacterial properties, which may help to prevent tooth infections.
Other research has shown that Camellia sinensis may be more effective in temporarily reducing halitosis (bad breath) than chewing gum or breath fresheners – thanks to its natural disinfectant and deodorant properties.
It can help prevent type 2 diabetes
Drinking at least six cups of green tea a day may reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes by a whopping 33%! Those who regularly sip at this powerful beverage are found to have lower levels of fasting glucose and insulin, as well as lower A1C levels: all of which significantly cut the risk of developing diabetes. Again, these benefits are thanks to the antioxidant activity of polyphenols and polysaccharides.
Green tea lowers the risk of dying from cardiovascular disease
This amazing tea is good for your heart, too! Studies show that it can reduce your total cholesterol and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, which are among the risk factors for developing heart disease.
The superb antioxidants in green tea help to prevent LDL particles in your bloodstream from oxidising, which in turn prevents potentially fatal damage to the arteries. One study even showed that green-tea drinkers are 31% less likely to die from cardiovascular disease.
It helps you to live longer
With all these incredible health benefits, it’s no surprise that populations who regularly drink green tea tend to live longer! An 11-year study showed that Japanese adults who enjoyed at least 5 cups of this wonderful beverage each day had a significantly lower death rate during the study period. In fact, deaths from all causes were 25% lower in women and 12% lower in men. But also :
- Death from heart disease: 31% lower in women, 22% lower in men
- Death from stroke: 42% lower in women, 35% lower in men
A similar study backed this up, showing that people with the highest daily consumption of Camellia sinensis were 76% less likely to die over a six-year study period.
Drink Up !
Drinking green tea could help you live a longer, healthier life! It is highly recommend to make it part of your daily drinks. Try to choose a higher quality brand of green tea, because some of the lower quality brands can contain excessive amounts of fluoride.( 40 )
The Potion Tree Sencha 100% organic pure green tea is one of the purest Camellia sinensis in the world and packed with the healthiest antioxidants.
A small amount of leaves is enough for one cup. The dried leaves will open and infuse the water. Just 30g is enough for 35 cups!
Prepare a quantity of tea with either a tea strainer or our biodegradable empty tea bags. Transfer into a large glass bottle and sip throughout the day.
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Katie is a qualified naturopath specialising in health, wellness and nutrition. She loves words, travel, and exotic foods, and is much happier in running shoes than in heels!