Does the Green Tea Diet Work?

by Steven Popec 19. July 2010 09:31

With all the weight loss miracle claims, it’s hard to ascertain what actually works, and what’s actually good for you. There are many fad diets and crash diets that make wondrous and difficult to believe claims, but many of these are incredibly unhealthy, damaging, and can wreak havoc on your body, and cause far more harm than good. Diet pills and diets that exclude food groups are advertised all the time these days. The truth is that there is no miracle cure, but adding green tea to a healthy diet and exercise plan may help you to lose weight.

Weight loss effects
   
Being at a healthy weight is about more than just social acceptance. It can lead to significant health improvements, such as a lower cholesterol, and put you at a lower risk for heart disease, stroke, sleep apnea, high blood pressure, and a variety of other ailments.
   
The “secret” is that green tea contains a chemical called epigallocatechin gallate, or EGCG, which may be beneficial in helping you lose weight. This is just one of many nutrients and antioxidants that green tea contains that have a beneficial effect on your health and your weight loss adventures.

What green tea is and does
   
Loose leaf green tea comes from the same plant as white, black, and oolong tea. It’s a plant called camellia sinensis which is grown in many countries all over the world. The difference between these types of teas is all in the processing. Green tea is a little more oxidated than white tea, and unlike the fermentation process of black tea, is produced by steaming fresh leaves. In this way, the process yields a higher content of certain types of beneficial nutrients and compounds. Due to this process, loose leaf green tea has a higher content of polyphenols than does black tea, or oolong tea.
   
Green tea has many healthful effects, including a boost in your metabolism which will lead to burning off calories at a quicker rate. Green tea has also been shown to help improve your energy, which leaves you with more energy for daily exercise. It may also burn off fat, making it easier to see those pounds start dropping.
   
The EGCG polyphenol that occurs naturally in this tea will make it easier to burn off more calories throughout the day. It has a stronger effect than other natural compounds to increase thermogenesis, which leads to a higher amount of calories burned off at the end of the day.
   
While all of these are shown in various studies, the truth is that there is no miracle weight loss cure. There is no answer that will instantaneously slim your waist. Weight loss is a journey, and it takes a lot of work and a lot of time. It needs to include a well balanced, healthy diet, and daily exercise. But adding loose leaf green tea to your daily routine can help you in this process. Drinking green tea can only be helpful, as it has a myriad of other nutrients and antioxidants that will lead to health improvements in many areas.
   
It can’t hurt to give green tea a try. It’s healthy and tasty. Drink up and enjoy!

Top 10 Reasons to Drink Loose Leaf Green Tea

by Elena Popec 14. June 2010 13:57

Is there even an argument of loose leaf over using tea bags? Loose leaf tea has been left in its natural state and the brewing of it brings out the flavor of the tea. It’s not really a contest over flavorless tea bags.

The Benefits

And green tea is delicious; it has a sweet, natural flavor. It can be paired with certain fruits or sometimes spices or nuts to complement its flavor. Beyond being completely delicious, green tea is a healthy choice.

Energy Boost

Green tea has just enough caffeine to give you energy, but doesn’t lead to the crash effect that coffee or espresso can give. The way caffeine is released from tea is in such a way that regulates how the caffeine is released, due to a compound that exists in the tea itself.

Stress Relief

Green tea also reduces stress. There are compounds that occur naturally in tea leaves that have a calming effect, which decreases the stress response in your body. Try brewing some green tea when you’re worried or stressed.

Weight Loss


Research has also shown that tea may help speed up the metabolism. This would help people who are trying to lose weight. Newer studies have found catechins in tea which help reduce fat in the abdomen. Catechins are found in weight loss supplements, but why take those when you can drink brewed, naturally occurring tea leaves?

Healthy Teeth

This tea has also been proven to fight off cavities. It reduces gingivitis and it reduces the bacteria in the mouth. The tea leaf has fluoride which occurs naturally, and is a substance that helps build up strength and health in teeth. Green tea also destroys the bacterium that causes strep throat.

Antioxidants

Green tea helps ward off many viruses and sicknesses. It has the most antioxidants among the four types of teas, and also has naturally occurring polyphenols, catechins, and many other naturally occurring compounds which increase immunity in the body.

Anti-inflammatory

It also helps reduce inflammation. Green tea has anti-inflammatory properties which are natural. It’s a better choice than taking even over the counter chemical compounds.

Lowers Cholesterol

Another benefit of green tea is that it can reduce cholesterol. Studies have shown that consuming green tea regularly can reduce levels of the “bad cholesterol” while increasing “good” cholesterol.

Helps Protect Against Alzheimer’s Disease

And green tea also helps protect against Alzheimer’s disease, a form of dementia. Research shows that green tea can help improve memory related learning and have also been shown to help reverse mental deterioration.

Fights Cancer

Green tea may also protect against cancer, and it possibly kills off existing cancer as well. Research has shown that drinking between four and eight cups of green tea every day can really help when fighting off these diseases.

It’s Magic

Beyond all this, remember that green tea is also delicious. The most benefit of course comes from high quality loose leaf tea. These have less caffeine and more antioxidants. It doesn’t even seem like that difficult of a choice. The loose leaves can be brewed again to make three to six cups of tea. It’s affordable, delicious, and helps with everything from maintaining healthy weight and teeth to fighting off infections, preventing cancer, and even reversing the effects of Alzheimer’s disease. Green tea truly seems like a magical elixir.

9 Tea Busting Myths, the truth is revealed

by Elena Popec 18. February 2010 21:29

Every morning begins about the same for millions of families in the world, with a refreshing cup of tea: black, green, white, herbal, fruit, flavored. We partake our favorite drink mostly out of habit rather than consciously.

Scientists have calculated that a person drinks at least 51oz of fluid in one day, one third of this is tea. In each country people drink it in their own way: one is with butter and salt, some like it with milk, others prefer it by making extraordinary "bouquet", adding in tea herbs, fruits or flowers. We have collected the most common myths about tea, so we can confirm or refute the controversial debate.


Myth #1. Tea has a tonic effect on the body, so it is better to drink in the morning.

True. Tea contains caffeine which has an activating effect on the cardiovascular system, so it should be drunk in the morning or afternoon. By the way, caffeine content in green tea is less than in black tea or coffee. Therefore, if you want to cheer up, do not drink gallons of coffee,  better brew a cup of aromatic and healthy green tea.

Myth #2. Tea with milk is harmful.


False. However, when milk is added, the chemical composition of tea is changing since the casein in milk binds the antioxidants. Tea becomes less tonic, and has less effect on blood vessels (the fact that the composition of tea includes vitamin P as well as other substances that strengthen the vascular wall). On another hand, tea with milk takes toxins out and works as a diuretic.

By the way, according to some narrations, the tradition of drinking tea with milk originated from the British. Due to the fact that the finest porcelain cups sometimes did not withstand boiling water and cracked. Therefore, the British began to dilute the tea with milk.


Myth #3. Loose leaf tea is better than tea bags.

True. Usually, contents of tea bags are known as fanning’s or dust, everything that is broken and crumbled. Tea bags are not necessarily cheaper than loose leaf tea, you pay for the packaging material and the process. Loose teas have more variants which can be brewed differently and it can be blended at your desired taste level. Tea bags, on the other hand, are pre-blended for a specific flavor. Loose teas can give you the purest of flavors for each variety, blended for your own preferences.  Tea brewed from tea bags is not harmful - just useless. There is simply no better alternative than loose tea,  it just tastes better. So, if you truly want to experience a heavenly cup of your favorite tea, then loose leaves are the way to go. Check out this great independent article titled, “For the love of tea!”. 


Myth #4. You cannot drink green or black tea in large quantities because it affects functions of the body.


Everything is good in moderation. Generally, there are no substances in tea that could harm the body. Three to four cups of tea per day will give you a total of 320 mg of polyphenols. People with kidney disorders, stomach ulcers, anxiety should not drink caffeinated tea. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should also avoid caffeinated drinks. There are a lot of healthy alternatives: Rooibos, Mate, Herbal blends, Fruit blends.


Myth #5. Herbal tea can be an assistant in the treatment of certain diseases.

True. Herbal tea cannot be used as medication but as an aid to help the drugs treatment is acceptable. However, herbs contain active substances that can trigger side effects and interact with other herbs, supplements, or medications. For these reasons, people should take herbs with care, under the supervision of a practitioner knowledgeable in the field of botanical medicine. For therapeutic purposes or maintain immunity, herbal infusion should be brewed separately and should not be abused.


Myth #6. Coffee and tea have the same amount of caffeine.


No. Dry tea leaves contain more caffeine than coffee beans. However, in a single serving cup of prepared coffee contains significantly more caffeine than a cup of tea due to difference in amount used to prepare a cup of tea. Don’t forget that certain types of tea can undergo a second infusion that will have even less caffeine. According to eHow.com, you can see for yourself that black tea, which is considered to have the highest levels of caffeine, is 50% less than coffee.
 

Myth #7. Hibiscus or Karkade decreases blood pressure.


True. Drinking Hibiscus tea effectively lowers blood pressure and reduces high cholesterol levels. Hibiscus is a main component of many Fruit and Herbal tea blends. Teas that contains Hibiscus, is caffeine free and rich in Vitamin C, which has a pleasant fragrance and vibrant red color.


Myth #8. Tea should be strong.


Partly true. Of course, the stronger the tea, the stronger its components and the higher the tannin content. Excessive amount of tannin over time may prevent the body from absorbing calcium if your diet is low in this nutrient, but the health benefits of tea are much greater than probable issues.  How strong the tea should depend on one’s preferences and suggestions from the tea company.


Myth #9. Tea has an antiseptic effect.

True. Tea actually contains antiseptic substance, but the concentration of these substances is very low, and with serious illnesses, they may be useless. It is better to seek assistance from a doctor and use the tea as an aid.

Health Benefits of Tea

by Steven Popec 18. January 2010 14:35

Health Benefits

Were you aware that our nation drinks approximately 165 million cups of tea daily? Millions of people love the taste of tea, but many of us are not aware of the healing powers tea can actually give us.

Tea is not only delicious, it can also help prevent High Blood Pressure by controlling angiotensin, which eventually leads to high blood pressure, according to health experts.

Studies have shown that drinking tea can also provide us with protection against cancer, heart disease and it can also aide in preventing memory impairment conditions such as Alzheimer’s.

 

Healthy Antioxidants within Tea

Flavanoids generally found in vegetables and fruits; contain powerful antioxidants such as Vitamin C and E.  So, one cup of tea actually contains twice as many of these Flavanoids as one apple.

You often hear about the importance of consuming fruits and vegetables, but rarely are you encouraged to drink tea - maybe more of us should.

Consuming tea and its healthy antioxidants provides us with antiviral, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antiallergenic benefits. 

Drinking tea also has the benefit of helping improve concentration thus improving performance. Concentration is improved due to the caffeine that is within tea. The caffeine makes you more alert and focused.

Tea is also a natural source of fluoride; therefore it helps to keep teeth and gums healthy.  Because tea contains this natural source of fluoride, it can help prevent certain gum diseases and tooth decay. 

 

The Power of Green Tea

The Chinese have been using the healing effects of Green Tea for centuries, 4,000 years in fact. Only in the past 20 years other parts of the world began to take notice of this herbal treatment for headaches, depression, and beyond.

In 1994, a study was conducted that revealed Green Tea could possibly reduce esophageal cancer risks by 60%. Numerous other studies have been performed as well to establish the health benefits of consuming Green Tea and to learn why the herb is so healthy.

Clinical studies conducted over the years have found that Green Tea, or the herbs that create Green Tea, contain powerful antioxidants. Many believe that it may help prevent cancer cell growth, but to also selectively eliminate cancer cells. This is especially amazing because the powerful herb does not attack the healthy cells around the cancer cells.

Green Tea can also be efficient in lowering the bad cholesterol, LDL, levels while boosting the good cholesterol, HDL, levels.  By doing this, Green Tea is improving the ratio of good to bad cholesterol and possibly helping to prevent the onset of heart disease.

The Chinese have shown us many healing teas, but Green Tea is by far the best healing tea that has been introduced to us. Because Green Tea leaves are steamed, they are able to hold on to their potent antioxidants.

Green Tea as well as Fruit Blends, Rooibos, Herb Blends and Ayurvedic are fairly inexpensive and is well worth the cost for all of the potential healing effects and preventative abilities it has.

 

Drink Black Tea for a Healthier You

Black Tea, although made from the same plant as white and green tea, is almost completely different. Black Tea, unlike Green Tea and White Tea, is processed and fully oxidized.  Although from the same plant, what happens to the tea leaves after picking is what sets the three apart.

Black tea does not hold as many health benefits as Green Tea, but it still has retains enough to make it a smart choice for drinking. One reason why it’s considered the smart choice is simply because most studies have been only conducted on green tea. This is because it is the most consumed tea in the world.

The antioxidants in Black Tea can help protect against free radicals damage that generally leads to disease. Some properties of Black Tea have been shown to slow the growth of cancer cells but not effecting the growth of healthy cells.

The fact that the properties in the tea have the ability to selectively target the cancer cells and not the healthy cells is truly amazing.

 

Drinking Tea May Slow Down the Aging Process

Drinking Black Tea has also been said to slow down the aging process. Look at the anti-aging lotions and serums on the market today and you will find that many contain tea leaf extracts. Black Tea also is known to help rev up metabolism and fat burning. This is even more so when used in conjunction with caffeine and exercise.

To lower your LDL, bad cholesterol, studies have shown that drinking Black Tea is beneficial in doing so as well as helpful in increasing your HDL, healthy cholesterol. Drinking tea can help balance the ration of good and bad cholesterol and help to ward of heart disease.

If you are diabetic, drinking tea can aid in lowering glucose levels. Lowering your glucose levels will also lower your risk of conditions brought on by diabetes such as cataracts. Start drinking tea today for a healthier you tomorrow!

 

Rooibos

Rooibos in Afrikaans is translated as “red bush”.  This has a very sweet taste and it is frequently used as a base tea to blend tea.  It is rich in antioxidants and it is caffeine free. Here are a few health benefits of Rooibos:

 

·         Contains a host of vitamins and minerals such as copper, potassium zinc, calcium, potassium and manganese.

·         It is anti-viral, anti-mutagenic, anti-inflammatory and anti-carcinogenic activity.

·         Helps infants with sleeping problems colic, stomach cramps or sleeping problems.

·         Is great for skin because it has zinc and alpha hydroxy acid. This can be applied to the skin in order to reduce eczema, sunburn and with acne.

·         Healthy for people suffering from kidney stones because it doesn’t contain oxalic acid.

Rooibos has traditional medicinal uses in South Africa and is often used to help combat against asthma and allergies. It is a great substitute for people who don’t use dairy products because it has magnesium, calcium and fluoride to help build strong bones and healthy teeth.

Quick Tip: To make a quenching blend of iced tea, add slices of apple & lemon and a touch of honey.  For hot tea, no need to add the usual sugar or sweeteners, simply use agave or honey.

 

 

Ayurvedic  

Ayurvedic is a historical holistic system of medicine from India. It offers great benefits of maintaining good health.  Here are a few benefits:

It relaxes the Mind

It has no known Side Effects

It improves the Quality of life

It relieves Tension 

Herbal Blend

For centuries, herbal blend (often referred to as tisanes) have been used in Eastern medicines. Today, it is highly regarded in Western medicine.  Herbal blend contains the following health benefits:

·         Dandelion leaf, has blood, liver and gastrointestinal cleansing properties.

·         Lemon Verben and Lemon balm have been used as a cold remedies because of its soothing effect.

·         Hibiscus has reduced hypertension studies have shown.

As you can see, Herbal Blend is a great addition to a healthy diet. 

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