Is Green Tea good for health?
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Some studies have been made of the other types of tea derived from Camellia sinensis, such as white, oolong and black tea. Green tea has been claimed to be very helpful for LDL cholesterol, cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, diabetes, liver disease, weight loss, atherosclerosis, neurodegenerative diseases and even halitosis.
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What makes green tea so special?
The secret of green tea lies in the fact it is rich in catechin polyphenols, particularly epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). EGCG is a powerful anti-oxidant: besides inhibiting the growth of cancer cells, it kills cancer cells without harming healthy tissue.
Health Benefits of Drinking Green Tea
1. Increases Metabolic Rate
Clinical trials conducted by the University of Geneva and the University of Birmingham indicate that green tea raises metabolic rates, speeds up fat oxidation and improves insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance.
2. Lowers Chances of Cognitive Impairment:
A 2006 study showed that elderly Japanese people who consumed more than 2 cups of green tea a day had a 50 percent lower chance of having cognitive impairment, in comparison to those who drank fewer than 2 cups a day, or who consumed other tested beverages .This is probably due to the effect of EGCG, which passes through the blood-brain barrier.
3. Effects on HIV
A recent study appearing in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology was the subject of an article on BBC News. It stated that epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) found in green tea can lead to the inhibition of HIV binding and may be used as a complementary therapy for HIV patients, but qualified it by noting that "It is not a cure, and nor is it a safe way to avoid infection, however, we suggest that it should be used in combination with conventional medicines to improve quality of life for those infected.
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4. Effects on Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
The polyphenols in green tea have been shown to reduce intestinal inflammation in mouse models of IBD.
5. For Burning of Calories
New evidence is emerging that green tea can even help dieters. In November, 1999, the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published the results of a study at the University of Geneva in Switzerland. Researchers found that men who were given a combination of caffeine and green tea extract burned more calories than those given only caffeine or a placebo.
6. Prevent Tooth Decay
Green tea can even help prevent tooth decay! Just as its bacteria-destroying abilities can help prevent food poisoning, it can also kill the bacteria that cause dental plaque.
Harmful Effects of Green Tea
To date, the only negative side effect reported from drinking green tea is insomnia due to the fact that it contains caffeine. However, green tea contains less caffeine than coffee: there are approximately thirty to sixty mg. of caffeine in six - eight ounces of tea, compared to over one-hundred mg. in eight ounces of coffee.
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