Most people have heard that green tea is good for you. More good news about green tea catechins was published in June 2012 in Journal – Nutrition Research. Green tea contains high amounts of a medicinal ingredient called catechins; much more even than black tea.
Evidence over the years suggested that green tea catechins could help people burn fat, improve blood pressure and blood sugar control, reduce cholesterol and reduce inflammation in the body.
In this study, researchers followed 56 obese, hypertensive (high blood pressure) men and women for three months. Half the group received a daily supplement containing either 379 mg of GT extract (high in catechin content) or a placebo.
How does studies favour intake of green tea?
The results showed that compared to the group receiving the placebo, the group ingesting the green tea extract supplement each day saw:
- A reduction in high blood pressure.
- Improvement in insulin function and blood sugar regulation.
- A decline in the bad cholesterol – LDL-cholesterol.
- A rise in the good cholesterol – HDL-cholesterol.
- A reduction in inflammation in the body as expressed by a decline in blood CRP levels (C- reactive protein).
The study authors concluded that: “daily supplementation [of green tea extract] favorably influences blood pressure, insulin resistance, inflammation and oxidative stress, and lipid profile in patients with obesity-related hypertension.”
Other studies have shown that supplementation with green tea catechins have blocked the progression of precancerous cells in the prostate gland to full blown prostate cancer and have improved important markers of tumor growth and metastasis in patients with existing prostate cancer and women with breast cancer. I will comment more on these cancer studies next week.
What is the recommended cup for green tea?
For general health benefits you should try to shoot for at least 150 mg of green tea catechins per day. One cup of steeped green tea has between 50-70 mg of catechins. Actually Lipton’s Green tea has 71 mg per cup.
So, having 2-3 cups per day makes good sense. If you are overweight, a type 2 diabetic, and or have high cholesterol, you may want to supplement green tea ingestion by taking a supplement containing 200-300 mg of green tea extract, standardized to 50% catechin content or ECGC as it may be listed.
Catechins from supplements have actually been shown to be absorbed better than ingested from steeped green tea, actually.
However you want to consume it, green tea and its catechin content provides some impressive health attributes.
- Pawel Bogdanski, Joanna Suliburska, Monika Szulinska, Marta Stepien, Danuta Pupek-Musialik, Anna Jablecka. “Green tea extract reduces blood pressure, inflammatory biomarkers, and oxidative stress..” Nutrition Research, 20 June 2012.
Eat Smart, Live Well, Look Great!
Dr. James Meschino