Because of its high antioxidant content, green tea can aid in preventing illnesses like Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s osteoporosis, and Parkinson’s disease, along with Type 2 Diabetes. Find out more about the benefits and potential risks.
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Since the beginning of time people from China as well as Japan have been drinking green tea because of its comforting taste and health benefits. Studies have found that drinking green tea could help prevent heart disease, assist in managing Type 2 Diabetes, and aid in maintaining bone health.
Green tea is produced from the same leaf as black tea, green tea leaves don’t undergo fermentation. This preserves the tea’s green color but increases its antioxidants which could explain the reason it’s so healthy.
Here’s a summary of the health benefits of green tea and its dangers, and suggestions for how to incorporate green tea into your daily diet.
Green tea that you drink every day can combat some health issues and help manage other health conditions. So so far, research has revealed green tea to be:
Might help improve mental health
There’s a scientific explanation of why sipping a warm drink of green tea could be such a relaxing experience. The tea, along with some mushrooms, contains an amino acid known as theanine. studies have discovered that could:
- Relieve stress
- Inducing relaxation
- The caffeine-based stress reliever can help combat anxiety.
Green tea is the one with the highest amount of theanine when compared with other teas like black, oolong, and white teas as per a research report published by Pharmacognosy Magazine.
A review from 2020 that was published in Plant Foods for Human Nutrition discovered that taking 200 to 400 milligrams (mg) supplementation with theanine daily decreased anxiety and stress levels in people who are exposed to stressful situations.
A different study from 2019 that was published in Nutrients in the journal Nutrients, of 30 individuals who had no major psychiatric issues discovered that those who consumed 200 mg of theanine for a period of four weeks showed greater improvement in depression, anxiety, and sleep than those who took a placebo.
Both of these studies show the benefits to the mental health of theanine but the amount of theanine that they utilized is much higher than what you’d see in a cup 2 of green tea.
May improve memory
Research has also shown that green tea improves memories, partially thanks to its theanine content. For instance, an article published in 2014 in Psychopharmacology that included 12 healthy participants found that the green tea extracts improved subjects’ working memory, which is a short-term memory that is crucial for comprehension, planning reasoning, reasoning, and problem-solving.
Patients were offered drinks made of milk that included either 27.5 mg of extracts from green tea or a placebo. They were then asked to complete a set of tasks during which an MRI monitored the activity of their brains. People who took the extract from green tea experienced increased brain connectivity, which is how various brain regions cooperate, as well as increased working memory and task performance.
As the study only used an insignificant sample of patients and patients, the results aren’t as precise. Further research is required to study the effects of green tea on memory.
Protection against neurodegenerative diseases
A few studies have found that drinking green tea may help aid in the prevention of certain neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s. This could be due to the tea’s high amount of potent compounds known as antioxidants, as per the 2019 review of research published in Molecules. Antioxidants shield cells from the damage which, in time, can result in neurodegenerative diseases.
A study in 2022 that was released in Frontiers in Nutrition found that after following 1,545 individuals in China with healthy brain function for a period of one an entire year. Those who routinely consumed tea, such as green tea, had lower levels of cognitive decline than non-tea drinkers. The same was true after researchers adjusted factors such as smoking, education, and physical activity.
Cognitive decline is among the first symptoms that are evident of Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia, as per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ( CDC). It is a reference to a rise in or more frequent cases of memory loss or confusion.
Could lower cholesterol levels
A little over 38 percent of American adults have elevated cholesterol levels, which increases the risk of having a heart attack and stroke According to the CDC. The positive side? Green tea could aid.
A meta-analysis from 2020 of 31 research studies published in the Nutrition Journal revealed that drinking green tea is associated with lower levels of total cholesterol as well as LDL (aka bad) cholesterol.
Can lower blood pressure
As well as decreasing cholesterol levels, green tea can also aid in maintaining cardiovascular health by decreasing blood pressure. In 2020, a review published in the Medical Journal of 1,697 participants discovered Green tea consumption dramatically decreased blood pressure, especially for those with high blood pressure, and with the most risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
This is crucial since more than 50 percent of cases of heart diseases and 60 percent of strokes can be traced in part to blood pressure issues, according to the National Library of Medicine. In the event that high blood pressure goes untreated, it could result in kidney failure.
The ability of green tea to reduce blood pressure could be due to its antioxidant content, as per the same analysis for 2020 mentioned above. Antioxidants lower the inflammation of blood vessels and increase dilation, so that blood flow is more fluid.
However, the majority of studies analyzed in the study did not last for more than three or 16 weeks, so it’s unclear what the effects of drinking green tea longer can or will increase blood pressure.
Could help stop strokes
Stroke remains the leading cause of disability and death for adult patients in the United States, according to the CDC. Green tea drinking is one method to reduce the possibility of having a stroke.
For instance, a study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition followed the drinking habits of more than half one million Chinese adults. The study found that drinking tea, particularly green tea was associated with a lowered risk of stroke. In actual fact the more green tea drinkers consumed, the lower the chance of suffering from a stroke.
It could help protect the health of bones
Green tea can also help reduce the reduction of bone mass. For instance, an article published in 2022 in Nutrients discovered that nearly six hundred postmenopausal Korean women who didn’t drink any green tea or drank just one or two cups a day in the past year had a higher chance lose bone mass in their thighs or spine as compared to women who consumed green tea 3 times per each day.
A decrease in the volume of bones increases the chance of developing osteoporosis which causes bones to become more fragile and could cause fractures to the hip, spine, or wrist, as per the National Library of Medicine. Women who are postmenopausal in particular are more at the chance of developing osteoporosis.
This could explain the reason behind research that was published in Medicine concluded that consumption of tea was associated with a lower chance of osteoporosis. It is due to its large amount of antioxidants, which in preventing bone loss and enhance the formation of bone.
Aids in preventing and managing type 2 diabetes.
Drinking green tea and tea as well as other types of tea could be effective in helping to avoid and treat Type 2 Diabetes, as per an article published in Antioxidants. The review concluded that the antioxidants found in green tea particularly can lower the resistance to insulin.
Insulin resistance happens in cells that are less sensitive to insulin, which aids cells in converting blood sugar into energy. It’s among the main risk factors for being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in the opinion of the CDC.
Green tea is linked to an extended and healthier life according to research from 2020 that was published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.
The study followed 100,902 individuals in China who had no prior history of heart attack or cancer, or stroke for more than seven years. It classified them as:
- Regular tea drinkers, that is, drink tea more than three times per week.
- The term “non-habitual” refers to those who drink tea less frequently they drank tea less than 3 times per week.
In comparison to those who do not drink tea regularly drinking tea, those who consumed tea more than three a week were at a lower risk of dying from any cause. Additionally, these people had decreased chance of developing atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, which occurs in the process where plaque accumulates in blood vessels and increases the risk of a heart stroke or attack as per The American Heart Association ( AHA).
Green tea specifically is associated with a lower chance of dying from any cause apart from coronary heart disease. Researchers believe that this may be due to antioxidants found in green tea that protect tissues from the damage that could otherwise cause the development.
Green tea isn’t the most significant source of calories, vitamins, or minerals in a cup. As per the USDA, 8 ounces of brewed tea contain:
- Calories: 2.45
- Fat: 0g
- Sodium: 2.45mg
- Carbohydrates: 0g
- Protein: 0.5g
- Potassium is a mineral that keeps you well-hydrated.
- Magnesium helps to control blood sugar levels.
- Selenium helps to strengthen our immune system.
Although the quantities are tiny, they can quickly be significant, according to your daily intake of green tea.
You can drink 8 cups or more of tea each day, according to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health ( NCCIH) which is an arm that is part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). However, the agency warns that high doses of tea may affect specific medications, for instance, those prescribed for the treatment of high blood pressure and heart conditions. Although it is not common, liver issues are also linked to the consumption of tea-based products, particularly green tea extracts that are consumed in pills.
Tips to consume green tea
No matter if you drink the tea cold or hot, here are some suggestions to be aware of:
- Think about purchasing naturally decaffeinated green tea. A cup of tea has the equivalent of 28g of caffeine according to the Mayo Clinic. For those who are sensitive to the presence of caffeine, drinking this can result in anxiety, rapid heart rate, and nervousness. Be aware that eliminating caffeine could reduce the antioxidant levels however research has been mixed.
- Be aware of the sweetness of your sweetener. If you are adding honey, sugar, or any other sweetener to your tea, be aware of the AHA recommends that women consume no more than 6 tablespoons of sugar added per day, while men consume limit their consumption to nine teaspoons. Excess consumption of sugar consumption can cause weight growth as well as type 2 diabetes or heart problems.
- Make it your own. Green tea is a great drink to be enjoyed as a drink on its own but you can also incorporate it in oatmeal and smoothies or boil rice for steaming vegetables.
Green tea is an essential drink across many cultures. It may provide some significant health benefits like helping to protect our heart, brain as well as bone health. However, it does be a health risk for people taking certain medications or having a sensitivity to caffeine. If you’re not currently drinking green tea but aren’t certain whether it’s suitable for you, talk to your doctor or dietitian for advice on how it might impact your health and fitness goals.