The other day, I was trying to review my healthy habits and what I have changed or kept over the last several months. I realized that since I quit my desk job, I stopped drinking green tea. Before, I would drink green tea instead of water all throughout the day and always have a cup sitting by my computer screen. This keeps me warm and also helps me drink at least 5 cups of green tea a day.
So, why drink green tea?
You’ve probably heard that green tea is a great source of antioxidants. But, what you may not know is that it also contains other vitamins and minerals such as chromium, manganese, and other phytochemicals. But, the most important one is a polyphenol called epigallocatechin or EGCG. This polyphenol basically works with the caffeine in green tea to help increase fatty acid oxidation (use of fatty acids), block the development of fat cells, reduce fat absorption and increase fat secretion. Best of all, both of them combined also helps increase metabolism. As you can see, all these conditions favor fat loss. All of these benefits were proven by research and you can view the reference at the end of the post. The recommended dose that they found with the study that is effective for fat loss and good health in general is 3-10 cups per day.
So, starting this weekend, I started brewing my green tea again on a regular basis. I am now up to 2 cups per day and I’m working my way up to having more as the days pass. The other strategy that I plan to start doing is to drink cold green tea like an iced tea. Basically, I will brew at least 20 cups of tea over the weekend, put it in the fridge, and let it cool down. I will then use this “iced tea” as my water during workouts or just water in general. This will also help me increase my water consumption in general.
The other thing that I like about drinking green tea is that it helps take the edge off myy desire to eat more after having a meal. You know those times when after you eat, you still feel a little hungry? (I hope you do because then that would mean that I’m normal…LOL). It is for this reason I drink my green tea after meals too.
If you’d like more information about green tea, you can read this page about it on www.wikipedia.org. That article talks about the different types of green tea and the proper way of brewing it. When preparing my green tea, I turn off the heat just before boiling point so that the tea leaves would not taste burned or overcooked. I then steep the tea in the hot water for about 1-2 minutes before drinking it. I also don’t add any sugar to my tea because this will just defeat the purpose of drinking it for health 🙂
Do you practice drinking green tea? If so, what kind of benefits have you gotten from it? Let me know in the comments section below.
European Journal of Clinical Nutrition Published online ahead of print, doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2010.47 “Epigallocatechin-3-gallate and postprandial fat oxidation in overweight/obese male volunteers: a pilot study” Authors: F. Thielecke, G. Rahn, J. Böhnke, F. Adams, A.L. Birkenfeld, J. Jordan, M. Boschmann