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Last Updated on November 15, 2022

10 Healthy Benefits of Green Tea and the Best Way to Drink It

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10 Healthy Benefits of Green Tea and the Best Way to Drink It

Green tea is one of the healthiest beverages you can find. It can help you focus, fight aging, and even give you an energy boost! There are many benefits of green tea, thanks to the fact that it is loaded with antioxidants and nutrients that revitalize the body and mind.

Green tea is also a great caffeine alternative for those looking to completely cut out or reduce their intake of coffee.

Here are some health benefits of green tea and simple ways you can enjoy it.

10 Key Benefits of Consuming Green Tea

1. Has Less Caffeine

Green tea has significantly less caffeine than black tea, meaning it leads to less of a “slump” after drinking it. It will offer you energy without the intense caffeine kick that black tea and coffee often lead to. The extra energy helps you focus. 

2. Promotes Weight Loss

Green tea decreases inflammation in the body, aiding in weight loss. According to research by the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, researchers found that “the combination of GTE and exercise also produced greater changes in anti-inflammatory (increases in adiponectin) and metabolic (decreases in hs-CRP) markers than exercise alone.” [1]

3. Increases Satiety

A study by the Nutrition Journal shows that green tea, though having no effect on insulin levels post-meal, did increase the feelings of satiety.[2] This meant that the study participants were less likely to continue eating. This can have positive impact in curbing hunger.

4. Packs Powerful Antiviral Properties

Green tea catechins are strong antibacterial and antiviral agents that make them effective for treating a variety of infectious diseases.[3] This means that green tea consumption can help reduce the severity of a viral attack and make your healing much faster.

5. Lowers Blood Pressure and the Risk of Heart Disease

Since it helps in lowering the overall blood pressure, green tea has been found to relax the lining of blood vessels, which makes them better able to withstand changes in blood pressure.

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Thus, it may also protect against the formation of clots, which are the primary cause of heart attacks.

Studies found that, in general, coffee and certain types of teas (including green tea) reduced the risk of death from cardiovascular disease.[4]

6. Reduces the Risk of Esophageal Cancer

One of the most impressive green tea benefits is that it is thought to reduce the risk of esophageal cancer. It is widely thought that green tea kills cancer cells without damaging the healthy tissue around them.

Researchers found that the high concentrations of tea polyphenols “have shown inhibitory effects against the development, progress, and growth of carcinogen-induced tumors in animal models at different organ sites, including the esophagus and lung.”[5]

While this kind of research needs to be replicated in more studies, it does suggest that green tea can slow the growth of some types of cancers!

7. Reduces Cholesterol (particularly the ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol)

One trial analyzed the effects of green tea on cholesterol levels and found that it specifically seems to target the “bad” LDL cholesterol as opposed to HDL.[6] Black tea also has an impact on lowering cholesterol, but the effects are not as impactful as green tea.

8. Delays Effects of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s

The host of green tea health benefits are not just limited to your body; it also works wonders for your mind! Green tea is thought to delay the deterioration caused by Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.  Research shows that in addition to anti-inflammatory and antioxidants, it also helps protect against neuro-damages.[7]

9. Slows Tooth Decay

The bioactive compounds in green tea, like polyphenols-flavonoids-catechins, have antibacterial properties that inhibit not only bacteria but also acid production. Another perk of consuming green tea is that it has been shown to prevent cavities and tooth decay. It’s a great game changer for oral hygiene!

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10. Fights Depression

Several studies have shown that higher consumption of green tea leads to lower levels of depression in elderly individuals. Green tea polyphenols are shown to have antidepressant-like effects and are a great beverage to drink in replacement for coffee. In one study, there was a 21% reduction in the prevalence of depression for those who consumed at least 3 cups a week.[8]

As amazing as this finding is, more human trials are needed to fully understand exactly how green tea influences depressive symptoms.

Tips on How to Drink Green Tea and How Much

Now that we covered some of green tea’s health benefits, here are simple tips on consuming the beverage.

1. The Right Temperature

The best temperature to brew green tea is about 185 degrees Fahrenheit. If you don’t have a thermometer, simply let boiling water cool for about two minutes to achieve this temperature. Add the sachet of tea and let it steep for three minutes. Strain and enjoy!

2. How Much Green Tea Should You Consume in a Day?

Green tea is great, but it does contain caffeine, therefore, it’s best to avoid drinking it before bedtime. If you are sensitive to caffeine, 1 cup a day should be your limit. If you’re trying to shed off some extra pounds, try for 3-5 cups a day. Keep in mind to read the labels before consuming any green tea beverage.

The best type of green tea is the naturally sourced one with no artificial preservatives. Brew the green tea with the leaves instead of a tea bag as this will allow more of the essence to be extracted, so it retains its nutrients.

3. Mix it Up

Try mixing green tea with other healthy ingredients such as lemongrass, ginger, and mint. Adding these simple ingredients doesn’t only help mix things up, but ginger helps to aid menstrual cramps, while lemongrass can help with detoxing. Here are some recipes to try:

Lemon Grass and Ginger Green Tea

Ingredients:

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  • 1 stalk lemongrass
  • 7 slices ginger
  • 5 green tea bags

Before using, rinse and crush the lemongrass. Then place it, along with the ginger, in a saucepan with 2 cups of water. Bring the mixture to a boil, remove from the heat, and add the tea bag. Leave them to brew for five minutes, chill and then serve.

Both lemongrass and ginger aid digestion and adds that extra energy boost. This results in a healthy drink that promotes healthy digestion, as well as hours of energy.

Mint Green Tea

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup of fresh mint leaves
  • 2 green tea bags
  • 1 tsp honey (optional)

Wash and dice the mint leaves. Place them, along with the tea bags, in a glass and pour boiling water on them. Brew for 5 minutes. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours, sweeten if desired, and serve cold. Mint helps to speed up digestion, prevent hunger cravings and burn fat in the body. With its low-calorie content (a total of 9 calories per glass), it is also a perfect addition to any diet.

Lavender Green Tea

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 tsp dried lavender blossoms
  • 4 green tea bags

Place the lavender and tea bags in a container, and bring a small saucepan of water to a near boil. Pour the water over the mixture and allow to brew for up to five minutes. Refrigerate and serve chilled, with an optional lavender sprig.

Lavender gives a subtle flavor to green tea, making it possible to forgo added sweeteners and eliminate extra calories.

Final Thoughts

There are many health benefits to consuming green tea, which can help you meet all of your health goals whether it be to lose weight or curb the morning anxiety that comes from coffee. In addition, research has shown that it can help fight depression and even slow down the effects of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. The great thing about green tea is that you can mix it up with other ingredients to create other delicious drink flavors.

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TL;DR

Don't have time for the full article? Read this.

10 Healthy Benefits of Green Tea and the Best Way to Drink It

Green tea is one of the healthiest beverages you can find and it can help you focus, fight aging, and even give you an energy boost!

Green tea catechins are strong antibacterial and antiviral agents that make them effective for treating a variety of infectious diseases. In addition, it helps lower blood pressure and promotes weight loss.

Studies have also shown that green tea, though having no effect on insulin levels post-meal, did increase the feelings of satiety and even slow tooth decay.

If you’re sensitive to caffeine, it’s best to consume only 1 cup a day; for weight loss consume about 3-5 cups daily.

The best type of green tea is the naturally sourced one with no artificial preservatives. Brew the green tea with the leaves instead of a tea bag as this will allow more of the essence to be extracted, so it retains its nutrients.

 

Featured photo credit: Matcha & CO via unsplash.com

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Reference

More by this author

Ciara Conlon

Productivity coach, speaker, blogger and author of Chaos to Control, a Practical Guide to Getting Things Done

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