Green tea, native to China and India, has been consumed and lauded for its health benefits for centuries. It is made from un-oxidized tea leaves and is one of the least processed types of tea. Modern science has begun to show us what those ancient peoples knew; green tea is all around amazing!
1. Because of its minimal processing, green tea contains high levels of antioxidants and beneficial bioactive compounds, such as polyphenols. These compounds help rid your body of free radicals, which are known to play a part in the aging process and the formation of disease.
2. While green tea contains less caffeine than coffee, it also contains the amino acid L-theanine, which works together with caffeine to improve brain function. So you get a healthy brain boost, not the jitters and then a caffeine crash.
3. Green tea has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, and is therefore helpful in preventing dental cavities, stress, chronic fatigue, and helps treat skin conditions and arthritis.
4. Green tea may help protect you against cancer. Multiple studies have shown that green tea drinkers have a lower risk of various types of cancer.
5. The catechins (antioxidants) in green tea can have a protective effect on neurons and may reduce the risk of both Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.
6. Green tea has been shown to improve blood flow, lower cholesterol and help prevent heart disease.
7. Amino acids found in green tea reduce stress and provide a feelming of calm.
8. It is a zero calorie drink, and there are many types of green tea, so you can easily find one to suit your tastes!
What’s not to love? Here are a few tips on keeping the health benefits at their maximum:
* Don’t add green tea to boiling water, that will destroy some of the catechins. Instead try to steep in 160 to 170 degree water.
* Add lemon. Vitamin C makes the healthy compounds in green tea easier to absorb.
* Levels of the healthful compounds in green tea can vary. High end teas usually have more, and canned green tea drinks generally have less.
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