For ages, people consume the beverage tea every day. In fact next to water, tea is the most consumed liquid around the globe. Tea saw its being in China and India. And today, a lot of people take tea due its health benefits as proven by scientists. But what are the health benefits of green tea?
Tea is made from species of plant called “Camellia Sinensis”.It comes in three different kinds. They are green tea, black tea, and the oolong tea. All the varieties are unique and are produced from the same species of plant. However, the production process differs.
For example, the oolong tea is produced from partially fermented leaves. The black tea is allowed to ferment fully while the green tea is produced from unfermented leaves. Among the three available types of tea, the green tea is the healthiest due to its contents. Some of the contents are -zero sugar, zero calories, and antioxidant which keeps you younger. What is more, green tea is very refreshing.
Components of Green Tea
Green tea contains many ingredients (bioactive compounds). Some of the compounds are- vitamin k, alkaloids, polyphenols, and caffeine. Talking of the stimulants in green tea, some of them are – theobromine, theophylline, and caffeine. The amino acid (L- theanine) available in green tea calms the nerves. Not only that, green tea stimulates the body too.
Another component of the green tea is the antioxidant called polyphenols. This active antioxidant is very high in green tea but less in the other two types of tea. Because the leaves are never allowed to ferment. But in the case of black and oolong tea, the leaves are either partially or fully fermented with lower polyphenol content.
The polyphenols present in green tea comes in several kinds. Some of them are – the flavonoids, catechins and the epigallocatechin -3- gallate (EGCG). This powerful antioxidant epigallocatechin-3- gallate contains many medicinal properties and cures diseases too. Also, the flavonoids and the catechins lower the rate at which radicals are formed in the body. They also protect the molecules and cells. Other forms of catechins polyphenol in green tea are – the epicatechin, gallocatechin, epigallocatechin, and the epicatechin gallate. Granted, tea leaves are rich in caffeine than coffee beans. Yet, a cup of coffee contains higher caffeine content than a cup of tea . Because fewer leaves are used in the production of tea than coffee bean is used in coffee production.
Proven Health Benefits of Green Tea
It protects the brain
Green tea protects the brain against neurodegenerative diseases. The two most common examples are Alzheimer and Parkinson’s neurodegenerative diseases. These diseases kill the dopamine that produces neurons in the brain. Scientists have proved that Catechins (antioxidant) present in green tea protects the neurons and lowers the risk of neurodegenerative disease.
Enhances mental performance
Caffeine is the major stimulant available in green tea. It is present in a moderate dose that it enhances brain performance by blocking adenosine receptor. It also increases the rate of concentration without causing jittering known for excess caffeine intake.
Also, the L- theanine ( amino acid) increases mental alertness and gives a relaxing effect too. When combined with the stimulant caffeine, will yield a better outcome.
Reduces excess fat
Green tea intake helps boost the metabolism in the system. Increased metabolism helps in weight reduction and much of this is associated with caffeine content present in green tea. This is achieved by helping the system burn stored fat and by converting them into energy. Additionally, it helps reduce unnecessary cravings for food by making you feel full with maintained energy level.
However, precaution should be taken when taken green tea. Doctors advise might be needed sometimes.