posted by SeanArmstrong @ 8:15pm, Monday 5 December 2011.
The Health Benefits of Tea!
Camellia sinensis is the species of plant whose leaves and leaf buds are used to produce White tea, green tea, oolong, and black tea. All of these teas are harvested from this species, but are processed differently to attain different levels of oxidation. Tea contains catechins, a type of antioxidant. In a freshly picked tea leaf, catechins can compose up to 30% of the dry weight. Catechins are highest in concentration in white and green teas, while black tea has substantially fewer due to its oxidative preparation.(1,2) Tea also contains theanine and the stimulant caffeine at about 3% of its dry weight, translating to between 30 mg and 90 mg per 8 oz (250 ml) cup depending on type, brand (3) and brewing method (4).
Health Benefits of Green Tea
A study from the Life Science journal Carcinogenesis showed that green tea, in combination with tamoxifen, is effective in suppressing breast cancer growth in vitro human breast cancer tumors and in vivo animal experiments in mice.(5,6) A study at Taiwan's Chung Shan Medical University found that people who drank at least one cup of green tea per day were five times less likely to develop lung cancer than those who did not.(7)
Clinical trials conducted by the University of Geneva and the University of Birmingham indicate that green tea raises metabolic rates, speeds up fat oxidation and improves insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance.(8) In addition to caffeine, green tea contains catechin phenolics that raise thermogenesis (the production of heat by the body), and hence increases energy expenditure.(9)
Researchers in Germany have found that a daily cup of black tea can help stop excess iron damaging the bodies of people who suffer from hemochromatosis due to its high content of flavonoids (commonly mistaken for tannins), which limit iron absorption.(10) Separating black tea from iron supplements and meals will decrease this effect for people who are anemic and taking iron supplements.
A study at Pace University reported in American Society For Microbiology (May 2008) found white tea extracts effective at treating bacterial infections, such as Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, pneumonia and dental caries.(11) White tea was also found to be effective in treating fungal infections from Penicillium chrysogenum and Saccharomyces cerevisiae.
Research conducted at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and presented at the International Stroke Conference in February 2009 found that drinking three or more cups of either green or black tea per day can reduce the risk of suffering a stroke by as much as 21%.(12,13)
In summary, there are many potential benefits that can be experienced from drinking teas made from the plant Camellia sinensis. Stop in and try some of the loose leaf teas now available at the Armstrong Clinic. Other featured teas include caffeine free fruit teas and flavoured Rooibos teas. This can be a healthy gift idea in the Christmas season that will keep on giving!
Have a healthy holiday Season from all at the Armstrong Clinic!
References available upon request.