All About Your Health and Apex, NC

Discover interesting health tips and happenings in our favorite town of Apex, NC

Green Tea, A Miracle Drink? Part 2

This is a continuation from yesterdays post.  If you were unable to read yesterday’s post, y0u can read it by clicking on this link:  green tea.

Green Tea keeps your skin acne-free

Green tea has a natural astringent that makes it both soothing and healing. Steeped green tea leaves have just enough gentle exfoliation properties to help with acne.

A green tea solution is a good natural acne cleanser.  To make a solution to cleanse your face take 1 cup of pure green tea leaves and brew them in 1 quart of pure, spring water.  Heat the water until it reaches 185 degrees F and then steep the tea for about 20 minutes. After letting the liquid cool down, transfer the liquid into a clean container then keep in the refrigerator.

To treat acne: Rinse the face with the green tea solution. Splash the green tea on the face, or dot onto acne blemishes with pure cotton. Do not rinse, allow the green tea solution to do its work undiluted.

Green Tea assists in a weight loss regimen

The caffeine in green tea increases the body’s basal metabolic rate (the rate at which energy is used for the body’s basic functions such as breathing, pumping blood, and maintaining body temperature).  This increase is referred to as a thermogenic effect; it assists with a weight loss program by helping the body burn more calories during day-to-day life.

Japanese studies have been done that prove green tea can help you burn fat more efficiently and result in a weight loss boost if you hit a weight loss plateau.  One green tea weight loss study followed sixty obese middle-aged women who were placed on a diet of 1,800 calories per day. Some of the women took a green tea diet pill with breakfast, lunch, and dinner; the others took placebo pills. After two weeks on the green tea weight loss study, the women taking the diet pill had lost twice as much weight as the placebo group. Results were even more impressive after the full month of the trial; the green tea users had three times the weight loss of the women who were simply dieting.

In November, 1999, the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published the results of a study at the University of Geneva in Switzerland. Researchers found that men who were given a combination of caffeine and green tea extract burned more calories than those given only caffeine or a placebo.

Green Tea can Help Prevent Tooth Decay

Green tea acts as an antiviral and antibacterial agent. It contains fluoride, a mineral that helps prevents cavities and strengthens tooth enamel. It can kill the bacteria that causes dental plaque.  A cup a day can help reduce plaque formation and bacterial infections in the mouth.

Other Benefits of Green Tea

Green tea has been reported to have anti-inflammatory and anti-histamine effects that help to decrease inflammation and the effects of allergies.  Having anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties, green tea can help fight infection and improve immunity.

Harmful Effects of Green Tea

To date, the only negative side effect reported from drinking green tea is insomnia due to the fact that it contains caffeine. However, green tea contains less caffeine than coffee: there are approximately 30-60 mg of caffeine in 8 ounces of tea, compared to over 100 mg in 8 ounces of coffee.

How Much Green Tea Should You Drink a Day?

There are as many answers to this question as there are researchers investigating the natural properties of green tea. For example, Herbs for Health magazine cites a Japanese report stating that men who drank ten cups of green tea per day stayed cancer-free for three years longer than men who drank less than three cups a day.  Meanwhile, a study by Cleveland’s Western Reserve University concluded that drinking four or more cups of green tea per day could help prevent rheumatoid arthritis, or reduce symptoms in individuals already suffering from the disease.  And Japanese scientists at the Saitama Cancer Research Institute discovered that there were fewer recurrances of breast cancer, and the disease spread less quickly, in women with a history of drinking five cups or more of green tea daily.

It gets more confusing.  A University of California study on the cancer-preventative qualities of green tea concluded that you could probably attain the desired level of polyphenols by drinking merely two cups per day.  On the other hand, a company selling a green tea capsule formula insists that ten cups per day are necessary to reap the maximum benefits.

How can you make sense of these conflicting claims? Given all the evidence, it is probably safe to plan on drinking four to five cups of green tea per daily. If you’re a fan of tea, by all means drink more; but whether or not you’ll derive added health benefits remains to be determined by further research.

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