For those who may be unfamiliar, green tea does not simply mean tea that is colored green. In fact, in many cases, green tea is very close to the same color as “regular” or “black” tea. Green tea is brewed with tea leaves that have not been have been fermented like the leaves that are used to make black tea. Many believe that green tea is superior due to additional nutrients and antioxidants that are not as plentiful in black tea. Here is a small sampling of the health benefits you may enjoy by drinking green tea.
1. Weight Loss
Yeah, this one is a biggie. Anything that claims to help people lose weight is going to get loads of attention, and green tea is certainly not an exception. It is believed that green tea helps to rev up your body’s metabolism, which results in increased weight loss. Ask anyone who has had to deal with hyperthyroidism. Increased metabolism almost always equals weight loss.
With diabetes reaching what some consider to be epidemic proportions in the western world, this potential benefit of drinking green tea is definitely and attention-grabber. It is believed that green tea helps to regulate glucose levels in the blood, which means it may help to prevent diabètes.
3. Heart Disease
Green tea may help prevent heart disease since some researchers believe that it has a positive affect on the lining of the blood vessels, helping them remain relaxed even during times when blood pressure changes. It is also believed that green tea may help to prevent blood clots which can lead to heart attack, stroke and other serious health problems.
4. Esophageal Cancer
Medical research has lead some scientists to believe that green tea may help prevent cancer of the esophagus. What may be even more surprising is that green tea has shown some ability to single out and destroy cancer cells while leaving the surrounding cells undamaged.
Green tea has shown promise as an aid in reducing cholesterol levels in the bloodstream. Specifically, it selectively lowers LDL or “bad” cholesterol which creates a healthier balance between it and the HDL or “good” cholesterol.
6. Brain Health
Both Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease appear to be on the rise in our aging population. Medical research studies using animals has shown that green tea helped protect brain cells, and also aided with the healing of damaged brain cells. This may help to slow the progression of both Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
7. Healthy Teeth
This benefit may be a bit diminished if you like your tea very sweet, but since cutting down on sugar is a good idea anyway, you may have a better chance of benefitting from green tea’s ability to wipe out harmful bacteria that cause tooth decay. The antioxidant in green tea called catechin can also destroy bacteria and viruses that cause throat infections and other dental conditions.
8. Blood Pressure
High blood pressure often goes hand-in-hand with other health problems like obesity and heart disease. Drinking green tea on a regular basis is believed to help lower blood pressure.
Millions of people today are on various prescription medications for conditions like depression and anxiety. Green tea may help alleviate symptoms of anxiety by having a relaxing effect on the mind and body.
10. Skin Health
Again, it’s the antioxidant properties of green tea that can help fight the effects of aging on the skin. Studies conducted on both animals and people has shown that green tea, when applied directly to the skin, can also help reduce damage caused by the sun.