In the overly automated world we are living in, diseases such as white-collar diseases, cancer and other disorders are fairly common. Moreover, increasing stress and anxiety in our lives in this age and time is also a contributing factor to a number of health issues. When it comes to busting stress and anxiety, green tea is nothing less than a magic potion.
Botanically known as Camelia synensis, it’s safe to term green tea as the healthiest drink in the world. Other beverages such as turmeric tea is healthy and has as many benefits as green tea. Apart from being anti-carcinogenic, anti-depressant and anti-diabetic, it is also capable of warding off depression and stress. What’s more, it keeps your cholesterol in check too thus reducing bad cholesterol and enhancing good cholesterol.
Mentioned ahead are 11 lesser known benefits of green tea:
- Resists development of carcinogenic cells
According to research, green tea consists of an ingredient known as polyphenol – an anti-oxidant containing anti-cancer properties. The human body constantly produces free radicals known as EGCG and the polyphenol found in green tea aims to eliminate those. Research has found that people who regularly consume green tea are less prone to all or most kinds of cancer as compared to those who do not. These include pancreatic cancer, mouth cancer, lung cancer and cancer of the food pipe.
- 2. Prevent Type-2 diatetes
According to an interesting study conducted by Japanese researchers in 2004, green tea greatly reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes. The researchers conducted the test on healthy human volunteers and the results showed a 1.5g/body stimulation during the glucose tolerance test in people who consumed green tea.
How does this happen? Green tea curbs the amount of insulin in our bodies by inhibiting the enzyme amylase that is secreted by the salivary glands. With the reduction of amylase in the body, the amount of starch in the blood steam lessens as a quick consequence. And the lesser the starch, the lesser insulin is needed to transport it.
- 3. Burn fat and aids in weight loss
Green tea is a great beverage to turn to if you aim to reduce the fats in your body, not only because it does it an amazing rate but also because it requires no change in lifestyle, diet or work out regimes.
Consumption of green tea gradually increases the metabolism of your body, ensuring that your heart rate isn’t affected much by it. According to a recent US study conducted on overweight men, it does so through thermogenesis – a process which enables the production of heat in humans and animals.
- 4. Reduces the risk of heart disease
Some fats are necessary and needed by our body but most are bad fats that accumulate in our arteries and prevent blood flow to and from the heart. This results in a condition known as thrombosis which is caused by the over accumulation of triglycerides. Triglycerides convert to nasty fats in our bloodstream that clog up our arteries. Green tea acts like a fat absorber that slows down the metabolism of triglycerides in the digestive system and passes them out.
- 5. Shields against Alzheimer’s disease
Most neurologists believe that green tea intake inhibits amyloid plaque from developing that is the primary cause of the deterioration of brain cells and, thus, Alzheimer’s.
Henry Paulson from Michigan State University conducted a study where it was found that the EGCG in green tea binds with beta-amyloid and alters it to prevent it from forming plaques.
- 6. Improves immunity
Researchers from Harvard University concluded that the ingredients in green tea help in stimulating Gammadelta cells. These cells act as the first line of defense against multiple diseases and infections. In simpler words, consuming green tea helps in improving our immunity by increasing resistance against various kinds of bacteria, virus and fungi.
- 7. Prevents allergies
Researchers in Japan identified methylated gallate as the compound present in green tea. This obstructs the cell receptor that activates allergies along with blocking two other compounds namely histamine and immunoglobulin. These two compounds are responsible for triggering allergies in our body too.
- 8. Prevents development of Arthritis
The primary cause of arthritis is the presence of a compound cytokine interleukin that disintegrates the cartilage of the joints in our bones. Green tea, however, has EGCG present that blocks the ability of this compound to produce enzymes that penetrate these joints causing damage to them.
- 9. Prevents eye disease and protects vision
Catechins are compounds that protect the eyes from damage and vision loss. A study conducted by the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry in February 2010 investigated the effect of catechins on vision and concluded that it is extremely beneficial. Luckily, green tea is rich in catechins and, hence, greatly beneficial for our eyes.
- 10. Cures depression
Depression is increasingly common among teenagers now compared with all other mental illnesses that have recently gained a lot of attention. Fortunately, the theanine present in green tea leaves assists in providing a tranquilizing effect and calms those who consume them. It is basically an amino acid that helps ward off depression.
- 11. Treats inflammatory skin diseases
According to a study conducted in 2007, green tea acts as a treatment for skin disorders such as dandruff and psoriasis. Researchers concluded how the typical symptoms of an inflammatory skin such as flaky, dry and red skin are reduced with the intake of green tea that slows down the growth of these skin cells and regulates their cycle in a better way.
These were a few of the many lesser known benefits of green tea. It truly deserves the title for the healthiest drink in the world as it acts as a blocker of many harmful substances in our body and aids in controlling their emergence too. This is precisely why an intake of 2-3 cups of green tea per day is highly recommended.