Benefits of Loose Leaf Green Tea

Featured, Green Tea — By on February 8, 2012 at 4:55 pm

By: Lorraine Bevere owner of FOG Tea

 

Green Tea has been in the news a lot recently. Modern scientific research continues to demonstrate that there are many health benefits associated with drinking green tea. However thousands of years ago the Chinese already knew that Green tea was a powerful medication that was good for one’s health.

 

The origin of tea can be traced back to over 4000 years ago in China. According to Chinese legend the emperor Shen Nong, a scholar and medical expert discovered tea in 2737B.C. One day while he was boiling water under a tea tree, aleaf from the tree dropped into the water and Shen Nung decided to try the brew. The drink was found to be not only invigorating but also to be a rather powerful medication. The emporer immediatedly placed Green tea on his list of medicinal herbs.

 

The three main types of tea are green tea, oolong tea and black tea. All come from the same plant, Camellia sinensis.Herbal and fruit teas come from plants and fruits and arenot tea in the strictest sense of the word. The difference between green, oolong and black tea is due to the method bywhich the tea is produced. With black tea the Camelliasinensis leaves, after they are plucked are left out long enough for them to fully oxidize before being dried.  Inthe case of oolong tea the leaves are only partially oxidized and dried, but in the production of green tea the leaves are steamed, rolled and dried before the oxidization process can begin. Thus with Green tea a more significant part of the nutritional and enzyme content of the leaf is left intact.

 

The benefits of Green tea to one’s health has been increasingly demonstrated by modern scientific research. Many of these health benefits come from the fact that tea contains high levels of antioxidants called polyphenols or flavonoids. These compounds are most prevalent in green and white teas, but are also present in varying degrees in Oolongs and black teas. Green tea flavonoids show antioxidant activity. Antioxidants impair the ability of free radical cells to harm the molecules that make up our bodies. We all know that fruit and vegetables are good sources of antioxidants but recent scientific research haveshown that one or two cups of green tea has the same ‘radical scavenging capacity’ as five portions of fruit and vegetables. Of course we should all eat plenty of fruit and vegetables every day but why not top up our antioxidant intake by also drinking green tea every day!

 

Green tea offers many health benefits. Recent medicalstudies suggest green tea to be of benefit in many areasincluding the following:

 

  • Boost the immune system
  • Reducing levels of cholesterol
  • Reduces high blood pressure
  • Lowering of blood sugar
  • Digestive and respiratory health – tea is antibacterial
  • Oral hygiene – help to prevent tooth decay.
  • Acne and other skin conditions.
  • Arthritis – displays anti-inflammatory properties.

 

Another potential benefit is in the area of weight loss.Research recently published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests that an extract from green teamay speed up fat oxidation. Ten healthy men in their 20′swere studied for 6 weeks and it was discovered that thosemen who were given a green tea extract used more caloriesin a day than those who did not. This appears to be due togreen tea having thermogenic properties thus causing thebody to burn fat faster than usual. One word of caution though – if you need to lose weight- and all you do isdrink green tea without making any other lifestyle changesthen do not expect an instant miracle! However green teacombined with a healthy balanced diet and regular exercise provides will help you in your weight loss program..

 

Anyone for green tea!

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