Science has been continuously revealing the benefits of green tea. The green tea drunk daily in Japan is now touted as one of the healthiest drinks in the world. Listed here are some of the benefits.
Aids the body’s pH balance and overall functioning
A healthy body is slightly alkaline, but an unbalanced diet of too many calories makes it more acidic. Tea, an alkaline product rich in minerals, counteracts acidity. Moreover, since green tea has no calories, weight gain is not a worry. The minerals in tea – potassium, sodium, calcium, manganese, copper, zinc, nickel, and molybdenum – help the body to function well.
When first introduced to Japan, green tea was drunk both to keep awake and as an aid to digestion since the tannin stimulates the stomach and increases intestinal activity. Green tea can benefit those with a tendency to be constipated.
Refreshes body and mind
One component of green tea is caffeine, which helps to dispel drowsiness and lassitude. A cup of tea drunk during work will clear the head and refresh both body and mind. Incidentally, the caffeine in green tea is a milder form than that present in coffee because it is combined with catechins.
Promotes healthy skin tone
Vitamin C is essential for good skin tone with a youthful elasticity. The vitamin C in green tea is resistant to heat, and can withstand temperatures as high as 176° F (80° C). Moreover, green tea is so rich in vitamin C that three cups of sencha contain the same amount of vitamin C as an apple.
Aids weight loss and healthy weight control
Dieting has become popular in Japan and other advanced countries where too many rich meals and fast foods are consumed. However, people on diets often drink special “diet teas,” which have adverse effects. In fact, ordinary green tea is preferable to diet teas. Green tea has no calories and is drunk without sugar. Moreover, if green tea is drunk after a rich meal, its tannin content helps the fat-degrading enzymes to work better. A cup of tea drunk before a meal can alleviate hunger and provide the vitamins and minerals that tend to be lacking in many diet drinks. So when you’re on a diet, drink more green tea than usual!
Provides much-needed zinc for expectant mothers
The chief concern of a mother-to-be is the health and her unborn child. A survey on the connection between a lack of minerals – especially zinc and copper – and low birth weight has been drawing attention recently in Europe and the United States. Zinc is a mineral that is needed during pregnancy and is present in green tea, so expectant mothers are recommended to drink some green tea each day.
Lowers cholesterol levels
Tea catechins reduce “bad cholesterol,” or low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL cholesterol), in the blood, thereby preventing hardening of the arteries and the formation of blood clots.
Helps maintain healthy blood pressure levels
Tea catechins inhibit the function of the angiotensin l-converting enzyme (ACE) that produces angiotensin II, which is responsible for high blood pressure. Thus, catechins can prevent high blood pressure. Gaba Tea is considered the most effective; it contains several dozen times more y-amino butyric acid (GABA) – a substance produced from glutamic acid, which is one of the flavor-enhancing ingredients of tea – than regular teas.
Provides powerful physiological antioxidant activity
Tea catechins prevent the oxidation of fat in foods, and are thus natural antioxidant agents. Among them, epigallo catechin gallate (EGCG) has about twenty times the antioxidant power of vitamin E.
Tea is an antioxidant substance, and the carotene, vitamin C, and vitamin E give it a synergistic effect. Thus, it slows aging and also inhibits the growth of cancer-causing agents in cells.
Prevents tooth decay
Tea catechins prevent the growth of bacteria that causes tooth decay and also the formation of plaque. In addition, the fluoride in tea helps to strengthen tooth enamel.
Tea catechins are effective against the periodontal bacteria that cause halitosis. Rinsing the mouth with a solution of tea will suppress halitosis.