6 health benefits of green tea
by Freya • 5 minutes read
Last updated: 28 Jun, 2022
Green tea is known to be one of the most beneficial drinks healthwise.
Studies have shown that the beverage has a range of health benefits due to its healthy bioactive compounds and antioxidants.
It is made from camellia sinensis leaves that have not been processed or fermented yet, due to the lack of processing of the leaves, it is strong in antioxidants.
Keep reading for the top 6 potential health benefits of green tea.
1. May help reduce stress
Research has shown that green tea can be beneficial for reducing stress as it can reduce cortisol, which is the stress hormone.
Green tea is thought to have stress resistance and neuroprotective properties. The reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in our body allows the tea to work as a potent stress mediator and can regulate the stress brought on by metal ions.
Tip: This is not something that will happen straight away, you will benefit from this if you are a frequent drinker
2. Can help improve heart health
Studies have shown that green tea can play a part in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Green tea has a positive effect on lipid levels and blood pressure as well as lowering LDL-cholesterol levels. It increases the amount of antioxidants of the blood, this allows the LDL particles to be protected from oxidation.
One study review showed that those who drink green tea have a 31% lower risk of dying from heart disease.
3. Increases fat burning and can encourage weight loss
Green tea is known to increase fat burning and boost metabolic rate, which is responsible for converting nutrients from food to fuel.
This type of tea contains a type of flavonoid called catechin and caffeine (there is typically 28 mg of caffeine in green tea), these two compounds can increase metabolism, those with a high metabolism rate are likely to burn calories faster than those with low metabolism.
The antioxidant, catechin can help break down any excess fat while working with caffeine to increase the amount of energy the body uses.
Studies in relation to green tea and metabolic rate can vary, but there is some good evidence that it can help increase your metabolism, one study showed drinking the beverage increased the amount of calories burned by 4%.
4. Can improve brain function
The caffeine in green tea can also help improve brain function.
Caffeine affects the brain by blocking an inhibitory neurotransmitter called adenosine. This process increases the firing of neurons and the concentration of neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine.
One study published suggested that there is no specific attribute to the effects that tea has, however, it positively influences anxiety symptoms, memory and attention, and brain function.
Green tea also contains the amino acid L-theanine, which increases the activity of the inhibitory neurotransmitter, which increases the production of alpha waves and dopamine, thus decreasing the effects of anxiety.
The components can also play a part in reducing the risk of neurodegenerative diseases.
5. May help prevent some cancers
As we know, green tea contains antioxidants, these can help play a part in lowering the risk of some cancers.
Antioxidants can help protect against oxidative damage, which leads to chronic inflammation which can eventually lead to cancers and other chronic diseases.
Cancer causes cell damage, the antioxidants of the tea extract fight the cell-damaging free radicals that are associated with this.
One analysis of studies showed that those that drank green tea have a 42% less likely chance of developing colorectal cancer.
It can also be helpful at preventing other cancers including, breast and prostate cancer.
Although there is a good amount of evidence showing the reduction in risk of some cancers, more needs to be researched to confirm the effects the drink has.
6. Helps reduce inflammation
Green tea contains flavonoids that have been shown to fight inflammation in the body. One of these flavonoids, epigallocatechin gallate, has been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects and to protect cell DNA.
One analysis found that green tea extracts promoted anti-inflammatory responses when applied topically, as well as improved skin microcirculation in the affected areas.
Green and black tea can be helpful at reducing inflammation and symptoms related to IBD with the help from the flavonoids found in the drink.
We hope this has encouraged you to include a cup of green tea into your daily routine and take advantage of the benefits it can have, but be careful as drinking excess amounts can have side effects, including:
If taking with other stimulants, it can increase blood pressure and heart rate
Consuming too much can cause issues to the liver in rare cases
If consumed on a empty stomach, it can cause nausea
Those that are sensitive to caffeine could experience anxiety, nausea, insomnia, and irritability
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- Applications of Tea (Camellia sinensis) and Its Active Constituents in Cosmetics - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6930595/
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- Chronic Inflammatory Diseases and Green Tea Polyphenols - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5490540/
- 6 Health Benefits of Green Tea - https://www.ahealthiermichigan.org/2011/10/06/6-health-benefits-of-green-tea/
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