By now it’s a well known fact that green tea has amazing health benefits. However if you’re not exactly sure what these benefits are, read on to find out why you should be drinking green tea daily.
1. Boosts eyesight
The antioxidants found in green tea can actually penetrate the tissues of the eyes and produce antioxidant activity. Catechins, an antioxidant in green tea, are capable of being absorbed into the tissues of the eye.
A 2001 study published in the journal Experimental Eye Research found green tea can actually prevent cataract-induced blindness. Researchers saw different parts of the eye absorbed varying amounts of catechins, with the highest concentration of this antioxidant found in the retina of lab rats fed green tea extract. The area with the least absorption of catechins was the cornea. These findings suggest that drinking green tea could serve as a protective measure when it comes to eyesight, but its effects have yet to be confirmed in humans.
2. Promotes healthy gums and teeth
Drinking tea has been given a bad reputation for its staining effect on your teeth. The hot beverage contains tannic acid, which is what gives tea its dark-like colour. However, the consumption of green tea can actually be beneficial when it comes to your oral health.
A 2009 study published in the Journal of Periodontology found that the intake of green tea was inversely correlated with periodontal disease. Regularly drinking green tea reduced symptoms of periodontal disease, possibly due to the presence of catechin. Catechin reduces inflammation in the body, and therefore, interferes with the body’s inflammatory response to periodontal bacteria. Its ability to control bacteria and lower the acidity of saliva and dental plaque makes it useful for preventing cavities and other indicators of poor oral health.
3. UV Protection
The catechins in green tea can actually make the skin more resistant to the effects of UV rays. They can also lead to reduced skin redness after UV exposure.
A 2013 study published in the British Journal of Nutrition found a relatively low dose (540 mg) of green tea catechins each day along with 50 mg of vitamin C for 12 weeks, or two cups of green tea can considerably reduce the effect of UV radiation on the skin. When UV exposure produced inflammation, green tea supplementation reduced that effect.
4. Combats allergies
Green tea may need to be added to your allergy season arsenal. Drinking the green liquid may provide some relief, as it’s been proven to be anti-allergenic; a specific compound, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), appears to be the reason for this anti-allergenic potency.
A 2007 study published in the journal Cytotechnology found the tea polyphenol can reduce pollen allergies. This is the first time a methylated form of EGCG can block the IgE receptor — the key receptor involved in an allergic response. It can elicit a stronger anti-allergenic response than normal EGCG, which makes it the strongest anti-allergen compound found in tea. Quercetin, a naturally occurring flavonol in tea, can also alleviate a histamine response.
5. Lowers cholesterol
The easy access to greasy foods puts your health at risk for heart-related complications like high cholesterol. Replacing unhealthy snacks and drinks with green tea could actually help keep your cholesterol levels at bay. Green tea’s powerful antioxidant, EGCG, is believed to inhibit the absorption of cholesterol from the large intestine.
A 2011 study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found green tea consumption significantly lowered the total serum cholesterol and LDL cholesterol across 14 randomized controlled trials of over 1100 participants.
Overall, green tea intake led to significant reductions in total cholesterol — 7.2mg/dL, and mean low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol (2.19 mg/dL). Research suggests drinking five cups of green tea per day will provide the biggest reduction in cholesterol.
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