Jan
2
2011

Green Tea

For thousands of years the Oriental world has known the health secrets of green tea.  According to legend, the Chinese Emperor Shen-Nung discovered this tasty drink by accident in 2737 BC.  The emperor was boiling a kettle of water on a terrace when some leaves from a nearby bush happened to drift by and fall into the water.  The emperor tasted the brew and found it delicious.  It wasn’t long before people were adding the leaves to kettles all over China and the Far East and enjoying the protective benefits of this plant.  Dutch traders brought tea to the Western world around 1600 and the British soon began a similar trade route, preferring the taste of black tea. 

Both black and green teas are made from the same bush, native to China and India-Camellia sinensis.   Green tean is different only in how it is prepared.  Unlike black tea, which is fermented, green tea leaves are steamed soon after being picked.  This steaming process helps preserve the plant’s antioxidants, called tannins or polyphenols.  Scientists believe green tea antioxidants are more powerful than those found in most vegetables.  Green tea also contains B vitamins and vitamin C and is lower in caffeine than black tea.

Thousands of women who practice the ancient Japanese tea ceremony called Chanoyu cut their risk of dying from several fatal disease in half.  It’s common knowledge green tea extract fights many bacteria that cause diarrhea and sickness, even some strains of E.coli.  It can also keep the germs that cause plaque build-up and cavities from growing in your mouth.  Researchers think the custom of drinking green tea in small amouts throughout the day might be the secret to keeping antioxidants circulating in your body.  

Studies show green tea fights cancers of the breasts, stomach, colon, prostate, and skin.   It can even help chemotherapy patients get the most out of their treatment.  Often during chemotherapy, cancer cell stop responding to drugs.  But a study in Germany showed green tea could make the resistant cancer cells start responding again.

Slowly drinking and holding green tea in your mouth for a few seconds at a time keeps high levels of antioxidants in your mouth and throat.  Scientists believe this could be why green tea drinkers get fewer oral and esophageal cancers than other people.  Researchers at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York discovered that green tean combined with curcumin, from the spice turmeric, creates a cancer-fighting superhero that drastically slows the growth of cancer cells from a human mouth.

For women, five or more cups a day of drinking green tea could mean better chance of surviving breast cancer.  In addition, if the cancer is an early stage, it’s less likely to spread to lymph nodes.  More than eight cups a day for post menopausal women, might mean even extra protection.  Overall, green tea drinkers are more likely to have types of cancer that respond to medical treatment, and are less likely to get cancer again than other women.

A long term study of men in the Netherlands showed a relationship between heart disease and stroke risk and how much fruit, vegetables, and tea the men consumed.  Those with the highest intake of these antioxidant-rich foods and drink were least likely to die from heart disease or stroke.  A Harvard Medical School study found that tea drinkers had a lower risk of heart attack than coffee drinkers.  Scientists believe an amino acid in green tea, called theanine, is responsible for keeping blood less sticky so it can move smoothly through your arteries.  Preventing plaque build-up.

Surprisingly, a weekly cup of green tea may be able to keep your toxins from damaging your liver cells, a powerful weapon against osteoporosis, and can help you lose weight.

You can buy green tea in most grocery and health food stores.  Store it in a dark, airtight container, and keep the container in a cool, dry place.  It’s best to use green tea within a month or two to get the best health benefits.  Because boiling water destroys some of the antioxidants in tea, you should steep green tea in water that is hot, but not boiling, for about three minutes.  Drink it before it gets too cool and the tea turns to a darker brown- a sign that the antioxidants are no longer active.  

 

Nicetas

About the Author: Nicetas Juanillo

Writing makes me happy away from home. My website is where you can find my tips about lifestyle, health and other issues. I also have books on my site that you can read to know more

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