Green Tea Health Benefits: recognised by the Chinese as long ago as Shang dynasty (1766-1050 BC).
Green tea health benefits are significant as they are high in antioxidants. The health benefits of green tea has been known to the Chinese for 4,000 -5,000 years. The catechins remain most potent and effective in combating cancers. Green teas are considered to reduce cholesterol levels and even to fight bacteria that create plaque and can cause dental decay.
Consumption of green tea has a much longer history than black (the oxidised tea we most commonly drink in the West). Green teas undergo little processing and have about twice the levels of antioxidants present in black tea. Green teas also have a higher content of the most bio-active antioxidant compound, EGCG.
Green tea is high in antioxidants which reduce the effects of ageing. They do this through the action of the antioxidants which combat free radicals. These toxic molecules can damage the proper functioning of healthy cells within our body causing disease.
Green tea is also good for your cardiovascular system and helps reduce the chances of arterial clotting and hence strokes. The catechin flavanol group of antioxidants help reduce the likelihood of cancers, especially breast, stomach, lung, ovarian and prostate.
There is a higher concentration of polyphenols catechins in green tea (over 20%) compared with black tea. This is because green tea is not oxidised during processing so retains a much higher proportion of these naturally occurring catechins, especially the valuable epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) – over 10%. These are known to be particularly anti-carcinogenic. Studies have shown that the polyphenols in green tea are more readily absorbed by the body than those from black tea.
Studies have shown that green tea acts as an anti-inflammatory. They have also indicated that green tea protects against viruses and bacterial infection.
The high catechin content of green tea helps break down cholesterol.
Green tea may help fight Alzheimer’s disease. “The green tea polyphenol (−)-epigallocatechin gallate and the red wine extract resveratrol both remodeled the fibrillar conformation of Aβ oligomers. The resulting nonfibrillar oligomers displayed significantly reduced binding to PrPC-expressing cells and were no longer cytotoxic.” Journal of biological Chemistry.
Other benefits of drinking green tea.
Aids relaxation – tea contains an amino acid, theanine, that calms despite the caffeine present in tea. The concentration of theanine is greatest in teas that have been grown in the shade such as the famous Japanese green tea Sencha Gyokuro.
Nutrition – tea contains vitamins B1, B2 and C plus fluoride which is good for the teeth. Green tea helps prevent the build-up of plaque and hence bacteria that cause tooth decay and bad breath. Being rich in flouride green tea also strengthens tooth enamel.
Taste – it’s fresh, it’s complex having characteristics commonly described as grassy, aromatic, nutty and brisk. Good green tea brewed well should not be bitter.
Variety – there’s a huge variety of green tea, each with their own characteristic tastes. These teas originate from many countries in the Far East with China being the most famous having particular provinces famous for different styles of green tea. Many other tea producing countries such as India and Kenya best known for their black teas are now producing green tea. See here for our green teas catalogue page.
Green tea caffeine. Caffeine levels in green tea are only about half that of black teas. This will help you sleep well should you like to drink tea late in the evening.
Green tea health. Your health is likely to be better when you regularly drink green tea. This is generally considered to be at least three cups per day.
Green tea calories. These are virtually non-existent and so will enhance your ability to bring down or control your weight.
Green tea effects. These can be significant. Not least upon your pocket as green teas can be infused several times making them very economic! Just increase the brewing time slightly between each infusion.
To see our page on black tea health benefits.