We have all seen ads or heard about the wild medicinal claims of green tea, but how wild are they? Does green tea help the body? Those wild claims may not be so wild. Researchers as recent as this week continue to support many of these claims. We will look at a brief history of green tea, what it is, how it’s made, then look at some benefits.
History of Green Tea
Tea, in general, goes back to somewhere around 5,000 B.C. and Green Tea has been said to date somewhere between 2,000 to 3,000 B.C. When we get that far back, it’s difficult to pinpoint exact dates. For our purpose here, let’s say that green tea has been around for a very long time.
Teas in general have been used throughout the ages for various ailments. Some have soothing properties that help you sleep, others help with digestion or for a number of other medicinal purposes. I know when I get a cold or have the flu, I always reach for a hot cup of tea.
What is Green Tea?
Green tea is usually a fresher, lighter-scented tea than other types. This is what helps give it that distinct taste and green color.
When it comes to caffeine, green tea is considered to be in the middle of the scale. There are also decaffeinated versions available for those who are sensitive to caffeine or those who want less caffeine.
According to Wikipedia: “Green tea is a type of tea that is made from Camellia sinensis leaves that have not undergone the same withering and oxidation process used to make oolong teas and black teas. Green tea originated in China, but its production and manufacture have spread to many other countries in Asia.
Several varieties of green tea exist, which differ substantially based on the variety of C. Sinensis used, growing conditions, horticultural methods, production processing, and time of harvest.”
This is actually a good answer from Wikipedia. I am usually very careful even looking there, let alone using it as a reference.
How to make Green Tea?
How we prepare our green tea can be done in several ways. Most of the time we just use boiling water and steep it in an infuser or teabag. Many of the green teas that are promoted as health or diet products will be put into powder or capsule form. The powder can be mixed into hot or cold drinks, and smoothies, and there are even recipes for other ways. It’s nice to have a variety of ways to enjoy my tea. Check out your favorite recipe site and try a green tea cookie, muffin, or cake.
If you want to make it the traditional way with boiling water, there are several good videos on YouTube.com that will show you how to make that perfect cup of tea.
Health Benefits of Green Tea
The quality of green tea will affect the actual health benefits gained. So, don’t expect the same benefits from a 99₵ fountain drink as you will get from a much better-quality product.
According to a recent article on webmd.com, some benefits shown by research are:
- Improved blood flow
- Lower cholesterol
- Helps with a variety of heart-related issues from high blood pressure to congestive heart failure
- Helps to keep blood sugar stable
- Helps to detoxify our body
- Boosts immunity
- Boosts metabolism
Green tea can also aid in weight loss by boosting metabolism and improving blood flow. There have been studies that also mention that the natural properties of green tea can aid in digestion and can be a natural way to cleanse our bodies from unwanted toxins.
A Swiss study showed that people who drank green tea had greater brain activity which has helped to block the formation of plaques that are linked to Alzheimer’s.
An article in Newstime.com on July 3, 2018, titled “Compounds Found in Green Tea and Wine Beneficial”, explains how research shows that properties in green tea can help block certain genetic disorders.
Israel21c.org “Israeli researchers show that green tea has a rejuvenating effect on damaged brain cells” article dated July 2018,.
One thing to keep in mind is don’t just go out there and start drinking a gallon a day. Even too much of a good thing is not good. Remember green tea contains caffeine, so drink in moderation. There may be other side effects, especially if you’re not used to drinking good quality teas. If you are using it for health or dieting benefits, make sure you follow the directions on the label. Don’t try to overdo it.
One thing to keep in mind is, price does not always equal quality. Some products are designed to look good, but sometimes you can find one that will do what you want at a more favorable price. If you are drinking green tea for a specific reason, do your homework on the different brands and types. Most will provide many of the benefits here, but some may have additional items added or have been grown in a certain way to give us the specific benefits that we are looking for. Now all teas are equal.
It’s really not necessary to be a tea historian, to know that teas, in general, have different properties that can aid our bodies in a variety of ways. Researchers can keep running all the tests they want and prove to us why green tea is good for us, but I have always been a firm believer in the benefits of green tea, although I may not know what they are, I know enough that it’s good for me and taste great.
If you are in the market for green tea, don’t be afraid to try different types or brands. There are several types out there. Just remember, the fresher the better is usually true when it comes to tea leaves. You really don’t want something that has been sitting on the shelf so long that it went stale. Any good tea shop won’t let that happen.
As always, please leave your comments or questions below.
Now that this article is finished, I think I will go have a cup of tea, but before I go here is a Pin you can share with your friends on Pinterest.