All You Need To Know About Green Tea

Green tea is often touted as being one of the healthiest beverages in the world. For centuries, green tea has been used in Asian medicine but is only now proving its health benefits through scientific research. Green tea may not be a magic cure-all for every kind of ailment, but it is beneficial to health in many ways.


What Is Green Tea?

Green tea has undergone minimal processing and no fermentation. This allows most of the beneficial compounds found in the tea to make it into the body. Green tea can be purchased in tea bags, loose leaf, in instant formulations, and already prepared. Green tea can also be obtained in the form of supplements. However, the important nutritional components may vary from one form to the next.


Nutritional Benefits

Green tea obtains its nutritional benefits from antioxidant nutrients called catechins. The most abundant catechin in green tea is known as epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). Green tea also contains additional nutrition through flavonoids and minerals.


Health Benefits

Green tea has been shown to be especially beneficial to the cardiovascular system. This beverage helps to lower blood pressure and keep deposits from forming on blood vessels walls to prevent atherosclerosis. Total cholesterol levels are lowered by drinking green tea on a regular basis while levels of good cholesterol are increased. The powerful antioxidants in green tea also protect cells from damaging free radicals. This healthy drink also helps keep blood vessels in the brain clear to improve memory and brain function. It also helps to prevent the formation of plaques associated with diseases such as Alzheimer’s. Green tea can help to increase metabolism and burn fat in those who are overweight. The special nutrients in green tea are beneficial at reducing the risk of developing certain types of cancer, including:

  • Bladder
  • Breast
  • Colorectal
  • Esophageal
  • Lung
  • Ovarian
  • Pancreatic
  • Prostate
  • Skin
  • Stomach

Health Risks

Certain brands of green tea contain large amounts of fluoride. Other brands, especially those that contain tea grown in China, may have lead in the leaves. Some green teas do not contain much in the way of beneficial ingredients, especially those that are made ready to drink. The best option is to try to obtain good quality tea from better brands, you can shop for healthier green tea here.


Making a Healthy Cup

For best results, do not boil the water for brewing tea. Allow water to cool slightly before steeping for more beneficial ingredients. Adding fresh lemon or orange to green tea is helpful since Vitamin C helps the body absorb the beneficial ingredients better. Do not drink green tea with meals, as some of the ingredients may interfere with iron absorption in the body. It is best to drink green tea between meals to avoid interference with other nutrients.