Green tea is probably the healthiest drink on the plant, and rightfully so with a large amount of benefits in its favor, from detoxifying your body, improving metabolism to helping you lose weight, and maintain your skin. But a single drink does not possess the power of solving all of your problems. It’s not a genie out of a lamp, after all. There have been overblown claims regarding green tea and we’re here to sort out what is fact and what is myth. Let’s spill the tea about what it actually is.
Claim #1: Green Tea helps Prevent Cancer
We’re still not sure whether green tea directly affects the different types of cancer, as the research is still unable to correlate the intake of green tea with cancer prevention. A recent study, combined the compounds of green tea with some cancer treating drugs such as Herceptin, which yielded positive results.
Hold your horses, though, as human trials have not been conducted yet to give any solid proof of its magical abilities against cancer.
Claim #2: Green Tea helps Lose Weight
This one’s for everyone, including me, that looks for that superfood that will aid us in instantly shedding weight. Woe be to our miseries, but this not the special drink.
Although it certainly contains antioxidants and catechins which help speed up the metabolism and burn calories faster, it just doesn’t work alone. You need to pair up green tea with some exercise, and eat healthy. Don’t assume just because you’re drinking the tea you can eat an entire pint of ice cream.
Claim #3: Green Tea Prevents Tooth Decay
A small study was conducted comparing the effectivity of green tea and common mouthwash. The catechins in the green tea inhibit and prevent many of the bacteria found in the mouth. Not only that, it also helps cure bad breath by killing that specific bacteria that causes the issue and lead to lesser plaque development, and decreases the risk of developing cavities.
However, it was also found that the mouthwash was effective as well, but the green tea had the added advantage of being cheaper. Go Green (tea)!
Claim #4: Green Tea Has Less Caffeine than Black Tea
While green tea is a great stimulant, improves focus and has less caffeine than coffee, it’s extracted from the same plant as black tea, called the Camellia Sinensis, and therefore has the same amount of caffeine. It’s just green due to its processing method, and presumed to be the healthier choice compared to regular tea.
All that glitters isn’t gold…or green, in this case.
Claim #5: Green Tea Reduces Cholesterol
Research has been conducted that claims green tea lowers the blood pressure and reduces hypertension, preventing heart diseases, after being conducted on various levels. All this is due to the catechins present in the green tea, which take the well earned praise they deserve for their hard work in making it a healthy drink.
Claim #6: Green Tea is Good for the Brain
Research has yielded positive results and shown that green tea consumption helps prevent Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease in both animal and lab models. While since is unsure as to why this occurs, and it is yet to be tested out on humans to conclude that it is actually effective, but hopes are high.
Claim #7: Green Tea Works Better in High Amounts
We’ve all heard that too much of a good thing is bad. In this case, it seriously is. Most of us become obsessed with green tea due to the health and beauty benefits it carries, but remember like all other forms of beverages containing caffeine, green tea is addictive too. The excessive intake of caffeine and polyphenols leads to problems like tremors, indigestion and in extreme cases insomnia.
So ease up on the green tea. You don’t need to chug it down, enjoy a cup every now and then, and let the amazing drink do its work!
Claim #8: Green Tea May Increase Lifespan!
No, we haven’t found the elixir of life yet, or even Harry Potter’s philosopher’s stone, but we do have green tea. Research has been done, showing that those that drink green tea have a decreased mortality rate and an increased life span; they don’t die from natural causes. However, studies are still being conducted to prove this fact, as we need to remember that green tea might not be the only factor the people tend to live longer. So sip your tea, but don’t expect to live forever.
There have been a lot of overblown claims about green tea and while they may have been true to some extent, the research is still inconclusive and needs to be done extensively to decide whether it meets the high expectations, regarding it. However, it does have health benefits that have been proven and is a healthy lifestyle choice if taken in moderation.
Just don’t make it out to be a super drink come to solve all your problems.