Tea is part of the Camellia Sinensis plant, and comes as black tea, which is fully oxidized, green tea, which is un-oxidized, and oolong, which is partially oxidized. However the focus of this article will be on green tea since it has shown the most health benefits during the clinical studies.
Green Tea Rich in Polyphenols and Vitamins
Green tea is harvested as young, healthy, green leaves, and then is gently steamed. This helps to keep its green color and potent phytonutrients intact. All tea, however, is rich in tannin, flavinols, polyphenols, and several vitamins: vitamin C, vitamin P, vitamin K and vitamin B. True tea does contain caffeine, but in lower amounts than is found in coffee. Green tea also has less caffeine than black tea. It is well known to help banish fatigue, raise energy levels and boost mental powers.
Green Tea a Great Antioxidant
Researchers at the University of California at Berkeley have found that green tea is a great antioxidant scavenger, reducing free radicals in the body. Antioxidants seem to slow or prevent cell damage that occurs from exposure to excess oxygen by creating a barrier around cell tissue. Those who get lots of antioxidants in their diets seem to be able to slow down the aging process and avoid or at least put off the development of many chronic, degenerative diseases, like heart disease, cancer and diabetes.
Moderate caffeine intake seems to promote good blood circulation, so if you have strong adrenal glands, the caffeine in tea in moderation might actually be good for you. However, if you are like many Americans today, and have weak adrenal glands, you might want to try using a green tea extract with low amounts of caffeine instead, as caffeine is not good for those with weak adrenals. Even though it contains caffeine, tea seems to act as a nerve sedative, and can relieve headaches*. Tea also acts as a diuretic, and as such, can promote better kidney function*.
Green Tea Found to Help Prevent Arteriosclerosis and Cancer, Researchers Say
Researchers at the University of California have also found both oolong and green tea to help prevent arteriosclerosis, which leads to heart disease. Green tea has also been shown in many studies to prevent cancer, and to inhibit the development of pre-cancerous lesions as well.
Green Tea Boosts Immune Function
The Camellia Sinensis plant is known to be antibacterial and antiviral*. So you can use your tea to apply directly to cuts and burns as well, including sunburns. And when drunk or taken as an extract, it seems to help boost your immune function*, probably because of its antimicrobial action.
Polyphenols in Green Tea Support Blood Pressure, Blood Sugar* and More
Green tea is really a powerhouse of a beverage, and the polyphenols it contains have also been shown to support healthy blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol levels*. In addition, they have been shown to protect your DNA from damage that comes from chemicals and also radiation. This means that drinking green tea, and/or taking green tea extracts, can be very useful for all of us who are exposed to more and more chemicals in our modern-day world. If you live near a nuclear power plant, fly a lot (where you are exposed to high levels of cosmic rays), or are undergoing radiation therapy, you might want to consider adding green tea and perhaps also a potent green tea extract to your diet.
Green Tea Extracts Very Powerful
Green tea extracts can be very powerful, as the antioxidants and polyphenols can be concentrated, without the caffeine. However, you want to make sure that you get a brand that conserves the polyphenols, as some green tea extracts don’t actually have much of this most important part of the green tea in them. We recommend one with around 100 mg of polyphenols per serving. If you can find one that is nanized, or broken down into very small particles, you will be able to digest and absorb more of the nutrients even if your digestive system is in some way compromised, like many of ours are.
Green Tea has Metabolism-Boosting Effects
Last, but not least, green tea is well known for its thermogenic effect, meaning that it can help your body burn calories. One study showed that three 90 mg doses of green tea extract caused an additional 266 calories to be burned every day. So if you are trying to lose weight, adding green tea or a green tea extract may be just the ticket to help with your weight loss.*
If you like green tea, you might want to consider adding some organic green tea to your diet. If you want to stay away from caffeine, or want a more powerful source of green tea, try a green tea extract, it can benefit your health in many ways.
* This statement has not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
About Author: Karen Pijuan is the owner of several health-related websites and has written numerous articles about nutrition, vitamins, healthy living, whole food supplements, natural body care and cleaning products, natural weight loss and more. Find out more about what to look for in a truly healthy vitamin, as well as resources for where to find the whole food vitamins and other supplement products like Green Tea Extract that she recommends at http://www.Healthy-Vitamins-Rx.com
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