Health Benefits of Green Tea
Green tea offers numerous health benefits. Some even claim it is the healthiest beverage on the planet! For starters, green tea is loaded with antioxidants, polyphenols. These antioxidants reduce the production of free radicals.
Eek, what are free radicals? Free radicals are the likely cause of aging. Free radicals are atoms or molecules that contain unpaired electrons. Electrons like to be in pairs, so a free radical will indiscriminately pick up electrons from other atoms. Turning those atoms into free radicals as well causing a damaging chain reaction. Antioxidants reduce to production of free radicals by preventing free radicals from removing electrons from molecules effectively slowing the aging process.
Green tea improves brain function. Green tea contains caffeine, though not as much as coffee, increasing the firing of neurons. Caffeine increases dopamine and norepinephrine. Green tea also contains L-theanine. L-theanine produces anti-anxiety effects by increasing activity of the neurotransmitter GABA. Because of the smaller amount of caffeine, you are less likely to have that afternoon crash.
Green tea has been shown to prevent certain cancers such as colorectal, prostate, and breast cancers. Green tea reduces risk of Alzheimer’s disease by protecting the brain from the formation of beta-amyloid plaques thought to cause the disease.
It is important to note the importance of choosing a high quality green tea, such as loose-leaf varieties, as lower quality green teas contain excessive amounts fluoride.