Hey Everyone! It’s time for the weekly Healthy Food Series on iScriblr!
Keeping up with the trend of being aware of the food products and the health benefits/health care involved with their consumption, this series aims at making you (and me) more aware and watchful of the foodstuff that we consume.
Today’s star product is – GREEN TEA!
History – Of all the types of teas, green tea’s history is the most out stretched and has been authenticated extensively across many south-east Asian cultures.
It is widely accepted that green tea was first steeped in 2737 BC during the reign of Emperor Shennong – a mythical sage in the mythology of Chinese agriculture and medicine. It is said that during one of his travels, when Shennong and his convoy stopped to rest, few tea leaves fell into his cup of hot water from a burning tea twig that lay nearby. When the Emperor consumed this water, he found it to be extremely refreshing and requested the members of his convoy to prepare it for him henceforward. Interestingly, this event is considered crucial in the history of teas, especially the history of green tea – since this was first recorded instance of tea (referred to as ‘cha’ in Lu Yu’s The Classics of Tea) being brewed and consumed.
However, some cultural historians trace back the history of green tea as far as 3000 years ago when fresh tea leaves were chewed and eaten for recreation by the people who grew it all over south-east Asia.
No matter what the ancestry is, in today’s world – Green tea is THE healthiest beverage on the planet! (Woot! Woot!)
Nutrient Content – Serving Size : 1 Mug (8 fl oz)
Calories : 2 cal
Total Fat : 0%
Saturated Fat : 0.005 g
Polyunsaturated Fat : 0.012 g
Monounsaturated Fat : 0.002 g
Cholesterol : 0 mg
Sodium : 2 mg
Potassium : 21 mg
Total Carbohydrate : 0.47 g
Dietary Fiber : 0 g
Sugars : 0 g
Health Benefits – Green Tea is loaded with antioxidants and nutrients that have powerful effects on the body. Below are a few health benefits of green tea that are supported by studies –
1 Green tea is loaded with polyphenol antioxidants, including a catechin called EGCG. Catechins are natural antioxidants that help prevent cell damage and provide other health benefits.
2 Green tea does more than just keep you awake, it can also make you smarter. Thanks to caffeine in it! Caffeine leads to improvements in various aspects of brain function, including improved mood, vigilance, reaction time and memory. However, green tea contains more than just caffeine. It also has the amino acid L-theanine, which is able to cross the blood-brain barrier – increasing the activity of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA, which has anti-anxiety effects. It also increases dopamine and the production of alpha waves in the brain, improving the over-all brain function.
3 Green tea has powerful antioxidants that may protect against cancer. Multiple studies show that green tea drinkers have a lower risk of various types of cancer.
4 The bioactive compounds in green tea can have various protective effects on the brain. They may reduce the risk of both Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, the two most common neurodegenerative disorders.
5 The catechins in green tea may inhibit the growth of bacteria and some viruses. This can lower the risk of infections and lead to improvements in dental health, a lower risk of caries and reduced bad breath.
6 Green tea has been shown to lower total and LDL cholesterol, as well as protect the LDL particles from oxidation. Observational studies show that green tea drinkers have a lower risk of cardiovascular disease.
7 Given that green tea can boost the metabolic rate in the short term, it makes sense that it could help you lose weight. It may be particularly effective at reducing the dangerous abdominal fat.
Recipe – The easiest way to drink green tea is to dip the tea bag in a mug full of hot water and let it steep for a while. You may add lemon, mint leaves for that extra zing! My favorite being – Organic India Tulsi Infusions.
Some Green Tea Varieties Are Better For Weight Loss Than Others – If you’re all about that green and on a weight-loss mission, you might want to choose “Matcha Green Tea” – the richest green tea source of nutrients and antioxidants – where whole leaves are ground and consumed, as opposed to other (most) types of green tea where the leaves are steeped and then the tea is consumed.
Why You Should Try Green Tea – As per – “In order to feel better, lose weight and lower your risk of chronic diseases – you might want to consider making green tea a regular part of your life.”
Here’s to clean living and a healthy lifestyle! Cheers!