Sunday, February 2, 2014

Boost your health with Green Tea

Many of us enjoy a glass of iced tea and some enjoy a cup of hot tea.  All teas have some health benefits but green tea is especially healthy for you.  In fact, in a recent WebMD article,  Health Benefits of Green Tea, Christopher Ochner a research scientist at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, stated, “It’s the healthiest thing I can think of to drink.  Green tea is beyond a super food.”
What are some benefits of drinking green tea?
  1.  Weight Loss – many of us have made New Year’s resolutions to lose a few pounds.  While adding some green tea every day may help shed those unwanted pounds.  Surprisingly, green tea seems to increase your metabolism so you are revved up to burn more calories from fat.  Those who have lost weight and want to keep it off also should add some green tea to their day.  Studies have found those on weight maintenance can better maintain their weight loss if  they drink green tea.  Not to mention, plain green tea or green tea with some lemon has essentially no calories.  A much better beverage choice than a sugared soda which can add 150 calories or more to your diet.
  2. Brain – yes, green tea is good for your brain.  In a research study those who drank green tea had more activity in the working area of the brain.  Other researchers have found green tea can even help prevent the formation of the plaques that are associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
  3. Heart Health – yes, green tea is even good for your heart.  It not only improves blood flow it also helps lower your cholesterol.
  4. Cancer – a little mixed on this one but some studies have shown that green tea can help your healthy cells and may help destroy any cancer cells.
  5. Stress Reduction – a chemical in green tea, the amino acid, theanine, seems to have a calming effect.  It may also improve your mood.
  6. Immune System – some studies have shown that the amino acid, theanine, also helps us fend off infections.  This study looked at coffee drinkers vs. tea drinkers and those drinking tea had more antibacterial proteins.
  7. Diabetes – green tea helps with blood glucose control.  For those with diabetes, drinking green tea seems to help keep blood sugar levels stable.
How much to drink?  Try for 4 cups a day health benefits.  Drink the tea with lemon which helps you absorb the healthier compounds found in green tea. 

So the next time you are in a grocery store, pick up a box of green tea.  Or, if you are out and about, most coffee places offer green tea. 

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