Is Green Tea Good for You?
Whether you have tried green tea ice cream or have purchased a facial cleanser with green tea extract, it’s easy to see that this beverage and its plant-powered benefits are making their way into several corners of your daily life. Though green tea has existed for thousands of years, it’s been getting more hype in the Western world in recent years for its multitude of health-promoting properties.
Green tea is good for you, indeed. But why? And how much should you consume in order to reap all of its high-ranking green tea benefits?
Sit back and steep yourself a fresh pot as we go over the answers to those questions now.
Types of Green Tea
Green tea is a variety of tea that originates from the Camellia sinensis plant. If that name sounds familiar, that’s because it’s the same plant from which black and oolong teas originate as well. Originally used for medicinal purposes in China during the Han Dynasty, it later grew in popularity as a drink of enjoyment to be consumed more often than on a medically prescribed basis.
Nowadays, it can be found in a number of different varieties including:
What Sets Green Tea Apart From Other Teas?
Though green tea, black tea, and oolong tea all come from the Camellia sinensis plant, the way each is processed after extraction is different, resulting in different flavors as well as different combinations of health-promoting properties.
Here’s a look at some of what distinguishes these three teas:
- Of the three, black tea has the highest caffeine content.Does green tea have caffeine? Green tea and oolong tea contain about the same amount of caffeine which can be made higher or lower depending on how long they are steeped.
- Black tea is an oxidized tea which means its leaves have been exposed to air and dried out, resulting in a darker leaf and, therefore, a darker tea. Oolong tea has only been slightly oxidized which puts it in the middle between black tea and the completely unoxidized green tea.
- All three contain the amino acid L-theanine which is believed to provide a gentler caffeine boost in comparison to the jitter-inducing effects of coffee or espresso. Green tea, however, contains the highest percentage of L-theanine.
- Green tea is particularly high in the antioxidant known as epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) which has been proven to help reduce the effects of amyloid plaques (often linked to Alzheimer’s disease) and act as a protective agent for your liver. *
No matter your preference, you can count on all three to provide a unique flavor, a source of caffeine, and a warming antidote to cold-weather blues.
How Much Green Tea Should You Drink Per Day?
As tempting as it may be to steep yourself a bottomless cup of green tea, remember that it is a caffeinated beverage which puts a limit on how much you should consume each day.
Caffeine is a stimulant, which means that too much of it could result in anxiety, sleep loss, headaches, or irritability—particularly when experiencing withdrawals. In order to avoid the negative side effects of being overly caffeinated, it’s recommended to stick to between three and five cups per day and learnhow long to steep green tea to get the desired caffeine content.
In order to track your caffeine intake, make note of the caffeine content of the green tea you purchase (most range from 30 to 50mg per eight-ounce cup) and how long you steep it for (the longer it’s steeped, the more caffeinated it will be). If it’s a loose-leaf tea, you can adjust the caffeine quantity by adding more or less tea to your teapot or tea infuser.
To start taking advantage of green tea’s health benefits, try adding a cup or two to your daily routine and see if you notice its positive effects over time.
Benefits of Drinking Green Tea
When something tastes delicious and promotes your body’s overall health, it’s a win-win. Green tea is precisely that which is why it’s been a staple of many cultures for thousands of years. But how, exactly, is it linked to longevity and physical wellness?
Take a look below at a few of its benefits as well as the ingredients that promote them.
- It can help with inflammation – According to the Arthritis Foundation, regular consumption of green tea is an effective, all-natural way to soothe inflamed, sore joints. It has the highest levels of polyphenol—particularly one called epigallocatechin 3-gallate—between white, black, and green teas. So if you suffer from arthritis, consider adding a couple cups of green tea to your diet each day. What’s more, when it’s applied topically, it’s been shown to help reduce inflammation caused by skin rashes or blemishes.
- It can aid weight loss – Is green tea good for weight loss? You bet! If you’re looking to slim down, there are a few properties present in green tea that have been proven, in some cases, to help with losing weight. The symbiosis of catechins and caffeine is an energy metabolism booster which may not lead to drastic weight loss but could help you to shed a pound or two and promote a healthy weight over time. Everybody and every body is a bit different, so just remember that green tea might not have the same effects on everyone.
- It can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease – The high levels of antioxidants present in green tea help to promote overall cell health and lower cholesterol levels. Maintaining healthy cholesterol is one of the top ways to fight off the threat of heart disease and stroke. So green tea drinkers may be pleased to know that their daily tea is helping to reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease by 31 percent.
- It can keep your mouth feeling and smelling fresh – Let’s face it—bad breath is something we’ve all had at one point or another. Aside from regular brushing and flossing, drinking green tea can also contribute to good oral health. The green tea catechins present in this beverage can inhibit the growth of bacteria in the mouth which can help to combat tooth decay, cavities, and the dreaded case of less-than-fresh breath.
- It can reduce the risk of diabetes* – Do you have diabetes or are you at a high risk of developing it? A study from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition revealed that green tea may lower blood sugar levels and help with sensitivity to insulin. Particularly if type 2 diabetes is a concern, green tea drinkers may benefit from its blood sugar risk-reducing ingredients.
Other Uses for Green Tea (Aside from Drinking It)
If you’re not a tea drinker, that doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of the many green tea benefits. Green tea extract, in fact, is present in many hair care collections and all-natural skin remedies. But that’s not all. There are a number of uses for green tea that might end up surprising you.
Here’s how you can use green tea in more ways than simply drinking it:
- As a hair or face mask to purify and hydrate
- As a soothing remedy for sunburns
- To reduce under-eye puffiness
- To help promote blood coagulation when bleeding
- To combat premature aging by minimizing wrinkles
- As an anti-inflammatory topical remedy for rashes and skin irritations
If you still need more convincing about the benefits of adding green tea to your lifestyle, look to The Republic of Tea.
Drink Green Tea with The Republic of Tea
Is green tea healthy? The short answer is a resounding “yes.” By now you’ve learned that green tea stands in a category of its own when it comes to both long- and short-term health benefits. And, as an added bonus, it’s a caffeinated alternative to coffee that can help give you a burst of energy to start the day and to stay alert throughout it.
With The Republic of Tea you can find:
- A wide selection of over 300 Premium Teas (not just green tea)
- Decaffeinated options for tea drinkers seeking a stimulant-free option
- A variety of hot and iced teas in both classic and refreshingly new flavors
- Loose leaf, pouches, capsules, and powders—packaging that suits your preferred method of green tea consumption
- Tea that’s been sourced from countries across the globe including China, Japan, India, Kenya, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam
Join our Sip by Sip lifestyle and a community of satisfied Citizens drinking green tea and staying healthy with The Republic of Tea.