The Skinny on Green Tea
Tea comes in many forms but most people are familiar with black tea made from the Camelia sinensis plant. Black tea, orange pekoe, and green tea are all made from this plant. The teas are from leaves of this plant, but are prepared in different manners. Black tea is allowed to ferment and oxidize till the leaves turn black, while green tea is steamed, rolled, and dried to prevent oxidation. Green tea has much less caffeine compared to black tea, but a lot more antioxidants called “polyphenols”. However, both black tea and green tea contain way more antioxidants than fruits and vegetables. These antioxidants are great at removing toxins from the body.
Research has shown that green tea extracts containing polyphenols and caffeine are able to produce thermogenesis in the body, increasing metabolism and burning fat. There is also some evidence that drinking brewed green tea can reproduce the same effect for short period of time. Many people recommend using green tea to help boost the metabolism which helps keep weight off and aids in weight loss. Green tea containing caffeine is also a natural diuretic helping to flush excess water out of the body.
Of course, Green tea is also good for the skin. Studies have shown that green tea can help protect the skin from free radicals caused by sun damage. They can also help reduce inflammation. Drinking green tea in conjunction with using sunscreen can be a good way to protect the skin on a sunny day. Green tea displays a number of anti-inflammatory properties and can be good for all sorts of inflamed skin conditions. Green tea is considered an astringent, meaning it can tighten skin and help shrink pores.
There are even some indications that green tea can help slow the process of aging by increasing the skin’s elastic tissue content and inhibiting enzymes that contribute to age-related degradation of the skin. It is not known if consistent drinking of green tea in the long term can help reduce wrinkles and sagging skin, but it does help slow deterioration over time.
Using Green Tea
Green tea can be incorporated into your daily routine in a number of ways. Most experts recommend drinking between 3 to 10 cups of any tea from the Camelia sinensis plant daily. This includes black tea, orange pekoe, green tea, oolong tea, and white tea. For a more concentrated form of tea, look to the green tea extract that can be drunk straight out of the bottle, taken in a capsule, or mixed with water on the go. When using green tea for the skin, you can look for a topical cream tea formula to apply daily. When using this for protection from the sun, apply the formula first to the skin, and then apply the sunscreen on top.
The benefits of tea have yet to be fully explored, especially in the long term. Besides improving metabolism, and helping the skin, there are any indications that it can reduce incidence of cancer, and even help prevent coronary heart disease.
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