21 Amazing Health Benefits of Green Tea & Side Effects of Overconsumption
Tea is a non-Indian drink but India is amongst top countries which produce and consume tea. Frankly speaking, Tea does not contain many calories but the addition of sugar in it increases the calories as well as the amount of sugar in our body. This is not good for our health. But people have developed a habit of having something hot in the morning and evening usually to refresh the mind. So, we can have a better alternative for tea which refreshes us and at the same time gives us numerous health benefits. Let’s see in this article the health benefits of green tea which will encourage you to include it in your daily routine.
Some Facts About Green Tea
Green tea is obtained from the Camellia sinensis plant. It is minimally processed, and unlike the black tea, it doesn’t go through oxidation (fermentation) process. This ensures the higher retention of nutritional content which is usually lost in the black tea (1). Besides, the black tea is found to reduce iron absorption, has a high caffeine content and is usually served with high sugar content which poses negative effects on health. The use of Green tea is believed to have originated in 2737 BC. It was in China when the Emperor Shennong drank water with some tea leaves accidentally boiled in it. Later, when he felt refreshed, he ordered its regular brewing. This incident marked the starting of the consumption of green tea and its varieties. Camellia Sinensis is native to Japan, India, China and other Asian countries. It has been a major part of their traditional medicines (2).
Nutritional Profile of Green Tea
Green tea with more than 450 organic compounds has a very high nutritional value. It mainly contains-
1. Antioxidant Polyphenols (Catechins)- epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG).
2. Tannin (flavonols),
3. Caffeine (thiene),
6. Essential oils,
8. Vitamin C (ascorbic acid),
10. Vitamin A, B1, B12, P and K
11. Elements such as iron, nickel, magnesium, strontium copper, zinc, and calcium.
Health Benefits of Green Tea
1. Helps in Weight Loss
Green tea is rich in an antioxidant compound called Catechin. Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is one of the Catechins that boosts the metabolism to encourage the fat burn.
Further, EGCG obstructs the functioning of an enzyme which breaks down norepinephrine hormone. Consequently, the level of norepinephrine increases and it promotes the breakdown of fat by signalling the fat cells. It is one of the best health benefits of green tea (3).
2. Cures Hang-over
Green tea with its antioxidants clears you out. Unlike coffee which makes your hangover worse by dehydrating you, green tea wakes you up and settles your stomach.
It works slow but is more effective than other means. You can go for Japanese Sencha green tea to reduce your hangover (4).
3. Fights Depression
The presence of a key amino acid L-Theanine in the green tea helps in keeping you less depressed.
L-Theanine promotes the production of chemicals like serotonin and dopamine that make you feel good and effectively fight depression (5).
4. Reduces Cancer Risk
The polyphenols (catechin; epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG)) present in the green tea control the cell signals to avoid any dangerous or harmful activity.
Studies have shown that individuals who drink green tea regularly have reduced the risk of cancers, such as oral cancer, colorectal cancer, and blood cancer (6)(7).
5. Good for Heart
Due to its antioxidant properties, green tea lowers the risk factors for heart diseases such as triglycerides and LDL cholesterol.
Moreover, it is found to help in promoting a normal blood circulation by widening the arteries by 4%. As a result, the risk of blood clots and heart attacks is significantly reduced leading to a healthy heart (8)(9)(10).
6. Improves Blood Pressure
According to the review in British Journal of Nutrition, the long-term drinking of Green tea improves blood pressure.
Its 12-week study concluded that the blood pressure reduced by 2.6 mmHg systolic and 2.2 mmHg diastolic. This drop in blood pressure is directly proportional to a reduced stroke.
7. Reduces Risk of Diabetes
The risk of diabetes is minimized due to the high level of polyphenols (antioxidants) in the green tea.
Green tea increases the sensitivity of body towards insulin and therefore, brings the blood sugar levels down. It is highly beneficial in managing both type I and type II diabetes. It is one of the best health benefits of green tea.
8. Increases Life Expectancy
The antioxidants present in green tea have a role in prolonging the expected human life.
In China, people who have been drinking green tea lived longer and healthier- according to a study in Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 2013.
9. Improves Immunity
The effect of free radicals on the immune system is negated by the antioxidants present in green tea.
Consequently, the immune system runs healthy and normal. This leads to its better handling of infections such as viruses and bacteria.
10. Improves Mental Health
The bioactive compounds of green tea affect the functioning of neurons. As a result, the risk of Parkinson and Alzheimer diseases is effectively reduced.
The caffeine content of green tea improves the cognitive performance. Further, it soothes and calms the brain with its amino acid L-Theanine. It is one of the best health benefits of green tea.
11. Improves Digestive Health
Green tea is rich in Vitamin B, C, and E which are essential to the body and aid in the digestion.
Its high antioxidant effect promotes the efficient functioning of the cells and thus helps in clearing out the waste.
12. Improves Dental health
Green tea reduces the oral bacteria growth and promotes healthy gums and teeth.
Drinking it regularly checks the bad breath, gums and cavities diseases, and improves overall dental health.
13. Improves Energy Level
You body experience an increase in the energy level as a result of the boosted metabolic rate by green tea.
The fat burning process speeds up by 17% and your body gets more energy to utilize. The Caffeine content also improves physical performance by making body fats available for use as energy.
14. Helps to Treat Dark Circles
Green tea loaded with tannins, caffeine and antioxidant reduce dark circles. Caffeine reduces the swelling. It shrinks the blood vessels inside your skin and thereby minimize dark circles.
Tannins assist in the functioning of caffeine and alongside treat the puffy eyes. It is one of the best health benefits of green tea.
15. Reduces Aging Effect
The anti-aging and anti-inflammatory properties of green tea reduce the wrinkles and expression lines.
Using green tea and honey as a face mask slows down the skin aging and cleanse it to improve its texture.
Here is an informative video from Fitness Rockers India on Green Tea benefits
16. Reduces Acne Occurrence
Keep Green tea leaves in half a liter water for 30-40 minutes, strain the liquid and store it in the refrigerator.
Use this mixture to clear acne on your skin and to refresh yourself after a tiring day. Follow tips for glowing skin to reduce acne problems.
17. Reduce Dark Spots
The antioxidants in green tea help clear dark spots on your face.
Drink it regularly and apply it with honey on your face for effective results. You can use the green tea bags to apply it to your face. It is one of the best health benefits of green tea.
18. Protects Skin from Sunburn
The free radicals that cause sunburn and rashes are prevented from working by the antioxidants in green tea.
Boil ½ a cup of green tea leaves in 2 cups of water on medium heat, strain, cool and apply on your face as a sunscreen.
19. Improves Complexion
Green tea by promoting the functioning of your liver enhances the detoxification process. The waste products and toxic substances produced as a by-product of the body are eliminated.
This brings a natural glow to your face and effectively helps in improving your complexion. Apply green tea with honey for additional benefits. You can also try some home remedies for glowing skin to improve complexion.
20. Good for Hair Growth
The Dihydrotestosterone hormone responsible for hindering hair growth is inhibited by green tea. It results in a stimulated hair growth and reduced hair fall. Green tea also prevents baldness in males.
The antiseptic properties of green tea make it highly effective against hair problems such as psoriasis and dandruff. It is one of the best health benefits of green tea.
21. Increases Hair Luster
Green tea is a great source of Vitamin E and C, and polyphenols that soften your hairs and increase their luster.
To make a green tea rinse-
Let 3-4 bags of green tea soak in half a liter boiled water. Rinse with this water at last after you have shampooed your hair.
Side Effects of Green Tea
1. Caffeine Sensitivity
Green tea contains 30-60 milligrams of caffeine that can create complication in individuals who are sensitive to its effects. It can cause insomnia and jitteriness as the side effects.
An excessive consumption of green tea can trigger vomiting and nausea. It happens due to the polyphenols in green tea that can cause oxidative stress.
Drinking more than the moderate amounts of 300-400 mg of caffeine can also cause vomiting.
3. Bleeding Disorders
Caffeine content is reported to increase the risk of bleeding in the individuals suffering from bleeding disorders.
University of Maryland Medical Center found that taking green tea along with the aspirin can make your blood thin. Therefore, the blood clotting capability of the body is reduced and results in profuse bleeding if you get injured.
4. Skin Allergies
Eczema and hives are the skin allergies that are associated with consuming green tea. In the case of an allergy to green tea, the person can experience a tingling sensation on lips, face, throat, and tongue.
In rare cases, the anaphylactic shock can also happen as a result of the severe allergic reaction. This is when the blood pressure drops and the throat swells.
If you have started consuming green tea lately, loose stools could be its mild side effect. It will get back to normal as you get used to your green tea.
Different types of green tea
Below are different types of green tea. You may enjoy various flavors of it.
Chinese Green Teas
Long Jing (Dragonwell)
Pi Lo Chun (Green Snail Spring)
Snowy Mountain Jian
Hyson Lucky Dragon
Japanese Green Teas
So this was about the Health Benefits of Green Tea. Hope you like today’s article. Let me know in the comment section below about your experience with green tea and how it benefitted you.