Green Tea and Its Benefits

Sitting at the ledge of my window, experiencing the pitter-patter of the rain from the comfort of my warm and cozy room as I look onto the road lined with trees swaying in the wind and admire the beauty of the city is a beautiful mental picture!

But something seems amiss. May be a hot cup of tea can complete the picture.

The joy that tea brings to everyone is boundless and has been known since ages now. The first time that tea was ever sipped on was for medicinal purpose in China during the Shang Dynasty. Tea in India is preferred with milk. However, all the benefits that it contains go down the drain the moment you add milk to tea.

If you are a chai-lover and want to imbibe all the goodness that it possesses, a tiny change in your tea-drinking habits is all that is needed to change your lifestyle completely. This tweak is called ‘Green Tea’.

For those who aren’t much into teas, you might be wondering what exactly is green tea? Well, it’s like the Shah Rukh Khan of Bollywood before Kuch Kuch Hota Hain happened to him. So essentially, the underdog.

To start off with a little bit of gyaan, green tea comes from a plant called Camellia Sinensis. It contains the highest level of antioxidants as the leaves of tea aren’t fermented. It has the same anti-aging compounds that are present in red wine.

The thing about green tea is, that you cannot have it with milk, nor should you add in any sugar. It’s supposed to be consumed on its own, redefining the proverb ‘simplicity is sophistication’. Now you might ask, “Where does the taste come from?”

It’s an acquired taste – like cheese or dark chocolate. In the beginning you might not like it, but with every bite that you take, you start developing a taste for it. The same concept allies here too. At first, you might despise the flavour of green tea, or rather say it’s sans any flavor.

But slowly and gradually, you’ll figure that it does have quite a grassy flavor to it. If you still don’t prefer drinking green tea on its own, try it with a dash of lemon juice and honey. It’ll up the flavor game and at the same time, will be far more beneficial in terms of health.

So what are these benefits that everyone keeps going on about? Green tea helps you maintain a healthy lifestyle and adds a lot to your diet. It reduces the risk of developing heart diseases and Alzheimer’s. A good idea will be to start drinking green tea when you are in your early twenties. It also helps in maintaining bone-mineral density and wards off eye diseases that affect vision in older age.

Here are some ways in which green tea is making your life richer:

The Heart Protector

It is believed that the consumption of flavan-3-ols & anthocyanin antioxidants, both found in green tea, are beneficial for metabolic and cardiovascular health. High blood pressure, cholesterol levels etc. can be kept under control with green tea as it contains properties which help increase the amount of blood your heart pumps and lowers blood pressure.

The Memory Protector

Green Tea prevents the breakdown of acetylcholine which is the neurotransmitter strongly linked with memory. This means that you will be able to remember everything from what happened last night to what happened five years back.

The Sugar Protector

Studies indicate that Green Tea might also be able to prevent diabetes. It improves glycemic control and helps normalize blood sugar levels. It is also rich in catechins which appear to have anti-obesity and anti-diabetic effects.

The Bone Protector

In a research, it was observed that when the bone cells of rats were exposed to green tea catechins, an enzyme was stimulated that promotes bone growth by 79 per cent. The catechins also weakened the activity of cells that instead of forming the bone, reabsorbed it.

The Eye Protector

The consumption of a good amount of catechins can help in protecting the eyes from oxidative damage and vision loss.

The Weight Protector

Consuming green tea will speed up your metabolism and consequently prevent weight gain. Catechins have a minute but positive effect on weight loss and maintenance. It also helps in reducing appetite.

Green tea has many health benefits and it truly is the greatest protector of all!