If you're not already a tea drinker - you should be. Tea is one of the oldest and most natural drinks on the globe, and many are discovering there is a lot more to a cup of tea than you might suppose. This is especially true of green tea, arguably the healthiest variety of the tea industry.
WHY GREEN TEA?
What makes green tea so special? Its many health benefits combined with a mild and delicious flavor have brought green tea almost instant fame over the last few years. As more is learned about the cancer preventative properties and other health aspects of the drink, green tea will continue to be among the world's healthiest beverages.
GREEN TEA REDUCES CERTAIN CANCER RISKS
There have been studies across the globe that have now provided firm evidence that green tea inhibits the growth of cancerous cells, effectively reducing your risk of certain types of cancer. Green tea has been shown to reduce the risk of esophageal cancer, colon cancer, prostate cancer and cervical cancer. There are claims that green tea can prevent other forms of cancer as well.
GREEN TEA REDUCES CHOLESTEROL
Certain elements in green tea have been shown to reduce levels of LDL cholesterol, or the bad cholesterol, improving the overall cholesterol ratio. Many scientists now believe that the same natural ingredients found in green tea are responsible for the lower instances of heart disease among the French despite their smoking and diets rich in fats. The same is true of the Japanese. There is a very low instance of heart disease in Japan despite seventy-five percent of Japanese males smoking on a regular basis.
GREEN TEA IMPROVES YOUR DIET, YOUR SKIN AND YOUR TEETH
Green tea has been shown in various studies to improve calorie burning in a typical diet. It also is becoming a primary ingredient in many skin care products including creams and even deodorants. Drinking green tea improves your teeth as well by reducing and preventing decay. The same property that destroys plaque forming bacteria in your mouth can also prevent food poisoning.
EGCG AND OTHER COMPONENTS
Green tea is able to do all that it does because of only a handful of ingredients. Green tea has a great deal of catechin polyphenols which are tremendously beneficial to your overall health. In particular, green tea is rich in epigallocatechin gallate, otherwise known as EGCG. EGCG is an antioxidant with powerful results. EGCG is strong enough to battle cancerous cells while protecting healthy ones. It also prevents blood from clotting improperly which contributes to better heart conditions.
GREEN TEA STANDS ALONE
Interestingly, other popular teas such as black and oolong varieties are made from the leaves of the same tea plant as green tea. However, those varieties of tea don't have the same health properties as green tea. The difference is not the tea plant, but the way the tea leaves are processed. Green tea leaves are steamed rather than fermented. This keeps the EGCG from oxidizing, thus leaving the medicinal value intact. The best aspect of green tea, however, is not its overwhelming health benefits; it's the delicious flavor that brings you back for another cup - regardless of how healthy you think you're being.