10 Benefits of Green Tea (2022)

Green tea is the healthiest beverage on the planet.

It is loaded with antioxidants and nutrients that have powerful effects on the body.

This includes improved brain function, fat loss, a lower risk of cancer and many other incredible benefits.

Here are 10 health benefits of green tea that have been confirmed in human research studies.

1. Green Tea Contains Bioactive Compounds That Improve Health

Green tea is more than just green liquid.

Many of the bioactive compounds in the tea leaves do make it into the final drink, which contains large amounts of important nutrients.

It is loaded with polyphenols like flavonoids and catechins, which function as powerful antioxidants.

These substances can reduce the formation of free radicals in the body, protecting cells and molecules from damage. These free radicals are known to play a role in aging and all sorts of diseases.

One of the more powerful compounds in green tea is the antioxidant Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG), which has been studied to treat various diseases and may be one of the main reasons green tea has such powerful medicinal properties.

Green tea also has small amounts of minerals that are important for health.

Try to choose a loose leaf brand of green tea, because some of the lower quality brands can contain excessive levels of fluoride. That being said, even if you choose a lower quality brand, the benefits still far outweigh any risk.

Bottom Line: Green tea is loaded with bioactive compounds that can have various beneficial effects on health.

2. Compounds in Green Tea Can Improve Brain Function and Make You Smarter

Green tea does more than just keep you awake, it can also make you smarter.

The key active ingredient is caffeine, which is a known stimulant.

It doesn’t contain as much as coffee, but enough to produce a response without causing the “jittery” effects associated with too much caffeine.

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What caffeine does in the brain is to block an inhibitory neurotransmitter called Adenosine. This way, it actually increases the firing of neurons and the concentration of neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine.

Caffeine has been intensively studied before and consistently leads to improvements in various aspects of brain function, including improved mood, vigilance, reaction time and memory.

However… green tea contains more than just caffeine. It also has the amino acid L-theanine, which is able to cross the blood-brain barrier. L-theanine increases the activity of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA, which has anti-anxiety effects. It also increases dopamine and the production of alpha waves in the brain.

Studies show that caffeine and L-theanine can have synergistic effects. Thecombination of the two is particularly potent at improving brain function.

Because of the L-theanine and the smaller dose of caffeine, green tea can give you a much milder and different kind of “buzz” than coffee.

Many people report having more stable energy and being much more productive when they drink green tea, compared to coffee.

Bottom Line: Green tea contains less caffeine than coffee, but enough to produce an effect. It also contains the amino acid L-theanine, which can work synergistically with caffeine to improve brain function.

3. Green Tea Increases Fat Burning and Improves Physical Performance

If you look at the ingredients list for any fat burning supplement, chances are that green tea will be on there.

This is because green tea has been shown to increase fat burning and boost the metabolic rate, in human controlled trials.

In one study in 10 healthy men, green tea increased energy expenditure by 4%.

Another study showed that fat oxidation was increased by 17%, indicating that green tea may selectively increase the burning of fat.

However, I’d like to point out that some studies on green tea don’t show any increase in metabolism, so the effects may depend on the individual.

Caffeine itself has also been shown to improve physical performance by mobilizing fatty acids from the fat tissues and making them available for use as energy.

In two separate review studies, caffeine has been shown to increase physical performance by 11-12%, on average.

Bottom Line: Green tea has been shown to boost the metabolic rate and increase fat burning in the short term, although not all studies agree.

4. Antioxidants in Green Tea May Lower Your Risk of Various Types of Cancer

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Cancer is caused by uncontrolled growth of cells. It is one of the world’s leading causes of death.

It is well known that oxidative damage contributes to the development of cancer and that antioxidants can have a protective effect.

Green tea is an excellent source of powerful antioxidants, so it makes perfect sense that it could reduce your risk of cancer, which it appears to do:

Breast cancer: A meta-analysis of observational studies found that women who drank the most green tea had a 22% lower risk of developing breast cancer, the most common cancer in women.

Prostate cancer: One study found that men drinking green tea had a 48% lower risk of developing prostate cancer, which is the most common cancer in men.

Colorectal cancer: A study of 69,710 Chinese women found that green tea drinkers had a 57% lower risk of colorectal cancer.

Multiple other observational studies show that green tea drinkers are significantly less likely to get various types of cancer.

It is important to keep in mind that it may be a bad idea to put milk in your tea, because it can reduce the antioxidant value.

Bottom Line: Green tea has powerful antioxidants that may protect against cancer. Multiple studies show that green tea drinkers have a lower risk of various types of cancer.

5. Green Tea May Protect Your Brain in Old Age, Lowering Your Risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s

Not only can green tea improve brain function in the short term, it may also protect your brain in old age.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common neurodegenerative disease in humans and a leading cause of dementia.

Parkinson’s disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disease and involves the death of dopamine producing neurons in the brain.

Multiple studies show that the catechin compounds in green tea can have various protective effects on neurons in test tubes and animal models, potentally lowering the risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

Bottom Line: The bioactive compounds in green tea can have various protective effects on neurons and may reduce the risk of both Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, the two most common neurodegenerative disorders.

6. Green Tea Can Kill Bacteria, Which Improves Dental Health and Lowers Your Risk of Infection

The catechins in green tea have other biological effects as well.

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Some studies show that they can kill bacteria and inhibit viruses like the influenza virus, potentially lowering your risk of infections.

Streptococcus mutans is the primary harmful bacteria in the mouth. It causes plaque formation and is a leading contributor to cavities and tooth decay.

Studies show that the catechins in green tea can inhibit the growth of streptococcus mutans. Green tea consumption is associated with improved dental health and a lower risk of caries.

Another awesome benefit of green tea… multiple studies show that it can reduce bad breath.

Bottom Line: The catechins in green tea may inhibit the growth of bacteria and some viruses. This can lower the risk of infections and lead to improvements in dental health, a lower risk of caries and reduced bad breath.

7. Green Tea May Lower Your Risk of Type II Diabetes

Type II diabetes is a disease that has reached epidemic proportions in the past few decades and now afflicts about 300 million people worldwide.

This disease involves having elevated blood sugar levels in the context of insulin resistance or an inability to produce insulin.

Studies show that green tea can improve insulin sensitivity and reduce blood sugar levels.

One study in Japanese individuals found that those who drank the most green tea had a 42% lower risk of developing type II diabetes.

According to a review of 7 studies with a total of 286,701 individuals, green tea drinkers had an 18% lower risk of becoming diabetic.

Bottom Line: Some controlled trials show that green tea can cause mild reductions in blood sugar levels. It may also lower the risk of developing type II diabetes in the long term.

8. Green Tea May Reduce Your Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

Cardiovascular diseases, including heart disease and stroke, are the biggest causes of death in the world.

Studies show that green tea can improve some of the main risk factors for these diseases.

This includes total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and triglycerides.

Green tea also dramatically increases the antioxidant capability of the blood, which protects the LDL cholesterol particles from oxidation, which is one part of the pathway towards heart disease.

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Given the beneficial effects on risk factors, it is not surprising to see that green tea drinkers have up to a 31% lower risk of cardiovascular disease.

Bottom Line: Green tea has been shown to lower total and LDL cholesterol, as well as protect the LDL particles from oxidation. Observational studies show that green tea drinkers have a lower risk of cardiovascular disease.

9. Green Tea Can Help You Lose Weight and Lower Your Risk of Becoming Obese

Given that green tea can boost the metabolic rate in the short term, it makes sense that it could help you lose weight.

Several studies show that green tea leads to decreases in body fat, especially in the abdominal area.

One of these studies was a randomized controlled trial in 240 men and women that went on for 12 weeks. In this study, the green tea group had significant decreases in body fat percentage, body weight, waist circumference and abdominal fat.

However, some studies don’t show a statistically significant increases in weight loss with green tea, so this needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

Bottom Line: Some studies show that green tea leads to increased weight loss. It is particularly effective at reducing the dangerous abdominal fat.

10. Green Tea May Decrease Your Risk of Dying and Help You Live Longer

Of course, we all have to die eventually. That is inevitable.

However, given that green tea drinkers are at a lower risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer, it makes sense that it could help you live longer.

In a study of 40,530 Japanese adults, those who drank the most green tea (5 or more cups per day) were significantly less likely to die during an 11 year period:

Death of all causes: 23% lower in women, 12% lower in men.

Death from heart disease: 31% lower in women, 22% lower in men.

Death from stroke: 42% lower in women, 35% lower in men.

Another study in 14,001 elderly Japanese individuals aged 65-84 years found that those who drank the most green tea were 76% less likely to die during the 6 year study period.

Buy today and start living: The UK Loose Leaf Tea Company

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With thanks to Kris Gunnars, BSc

FAQs

Is 1 green tea a day enough? ›

The Bottom Line. Green tea is packed full of health-promoting compounds. Regularly drinking green tea can help you lose weight and reduce your risk of several diseases, including diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Drinking three to five cups of green tea per day seems to be optimal to reap the most health benefits.

How can I get the maximum benefits of green tea? ›

How to get the most out of your green tea
  1. Pick a recent harvest. ...
  2. Add a squeeze of lemon. ...
  3. Say no to milk. ...
  4. Keep it fresh. ...
  5. Think about water temperature. ...
  6. Avoid iron. ...
  7. Don't drink it with food.
23 Jul 2021

What happens to your body if you drink green tea daily for 30 days? ›

Excessive drinking of green tea can cause stomach problems, diarrhoea and can even cause iron deficiency. You may also experience insomnia. Hence, drink it in limit as excess of green tea can prove detrimental to your health.

Does green tea actually have benefits? ›

In modern times, research has been able to demonstrate some of its health benefits more solidly than others. One large study in Japan followed 40,000 adult participants over 11 years, and found that daily green tea consumption was linked to lower risk of death from cardiovascular disease.

Which time is perfect for green tea? ›

The best time to drink green tea for brain health is in the morning or early afternoon 1 to 2 hours after meals. As lack of sleep can cause increase anxiety and restlessness, it is best to drink this tea in the morning or early afternoon so that you do not interrupt your sleep routine.

Can I drink green tea on empty stomach? ›

Drinking green tea on an empty stomach can cause stomach upset. Green tea has polyphenols known as tannins that increase stomach acid, leading to stomach pain, nausea, burning sensation, or even constipation. You have to drink green tea between meals or after a meal.

How much green tea can I drink in a day? ›

To be safe, drink less than 8 cups of green tea daily. This is because drinking green tea in excess could lead to consuming too much caffeine. Although rare, there is also a potential for liver injury from consuming large amounts of green tea's catechins.

How much green tea is safe? ›

Drinking green tea in moderate amounts (about 8 cups daily) is likely safe for most people. Green tea extract is possibly safe when taken for up to 2 years or when used as a mouthwash, short-term. Drinking more than 8 cups of green tea daily is possibly unsafe.

Can I drink green tea at night? ›

The presence of antioxidants and compounds in green tea makes it a perfect blend for a healthy body and a sound mind. In fact, drinking it at night can just be so miraculous for a good night's sleep. The presence of a compound called Theanine in green tea acts as a main sleep inducing component.

What vitamins are in green tea? ›

Green tea is proven to be a good source of vitamins A, C, E and many of the B vitamins. There are 13 essential types of vitamins: A, C, D, E, K and B vitamins (Thiamine (B1), Riboflavin (B2), Niacin (B3), Pantothenic acid (B5), Biotin (B7) Folate (B9), Pyroxidine (B6), Cobalamin (B12).

What does green tea do to face? ›

Green tea's anti-inflammatory properties can help reduce skin irritation, skin redness, and swelling. Applying green tea to your skin can soothe minor cuts and sunburn, too. Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, studies have also found topical green tea to be an effective remedy for many dermatological conditions.

How green tea changed my life? ›

Benefits for the heart and brain.

Green tea improves blood flow and lowers cholesterol. Research shows green tea helps block the formation of plaques in the brain that are associated with Alzheimer's disease. It keeps blood sugar stable and may also protect against the damage caused by high-fat diets.

Is green tea good for skin? ›

Green tea contains vitamin E that is known for its ability to nourish and hydrate the skin. It not only moisturises the skin, but also brightens and repairs it. This ingredient helps to reverse sun damage and fades dark spots, pimple spots, and other skin irritations caused by environmental aggressors.

What is the most healthy tea to drink? ›

Green Tea. Green tea is often touted as the healthiest tea. It is chock full of polyphenols and antioxidants that help to boost brain and heart health. Green tea is considered one of the least processed true teas as it does not undergo oxidation.

Is green tea good for liver? ›

A smaller study including people with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) found that drinking green tea high in antioxidants for 12 weeks improved liver enzyme levels and may also help reduce oxidative stress and fat deposits in the liver ( 7 ).

What are the side effects of green tea? ›

Green tea can cause side effects due to caffeine. These can include anxiety, tremors, irritability, and sleeping problems. This is more likely if you're sensitive to caffeine or take large doses. Side effects are less common with green tea than with other drinks that have caffeine.

Can I add sugar to green tea? ›

A new study has shown that adding ascorbic acid and sugar to green tea can help the body easily absorb helpful compounds that help fight health problems.

Can diabetics drink green tea? ›

Green tea doesn't contain added sugar, is naturally calorie-free when enjoyed plain from the bag, and is a nutritional powerhouse — all of which makes it a great beverage to add to your diabetes diet.

What should I drink first thing in the morning? ›

10 Healthy Morning Drinks to Get Your Day Started
  • Honey and cinnamon drink. Have a glass of honey and cinnamon drink first thing in the morning. ...
  • Lemon Juice. ...
  • Cinnamon Green Tea. ...
  • Coconut water. ...
  • Aloe juice. ...
  • Pomegranate tea. ...
  • Fruit smoothies. ...
  • Green tea lassi.
29 Oct 2021

Do you add milk to green tea? ›

You can put milk in green tea. White tea can be great with milk, and oolong tea with milk can be beautiful. The worst kind of tea to drink with milk is a tea that does not taste good on its own. If a tea is bitter and astringent, your body is telling you not to drink it.

What kind of green tea is good for you? ›

Matcha green tea is considered one of the healthiest green tea because the entire leaf is consumed by tea drinkers. The beverage is commonly brewed as a matcha latte or traditionally according to principles of the Japanese tea ceremony.

How much green tea can I drink per day? ›

To be safe, drink less than 8 cups of green tea daily. This is because drinking green tea in excess could lead to consuming too much caffeine. Although rare, there is also a potential for liver injury from consuming large amounts of green tea's catechins.

Is it OK to drink green tea everyday? ›

Drinking green tea in moderate amounts (about 8 cups daily) is likely safe for most people. Green tea extract is possibly safe when taken for up to 2 years or when used as a mouthwash, short-term. Drinking more than 8 cups of green tea daily is possibly unsafe.

How much green tea do you need to burn fat? ›

Drinking between 2 and 3 cups of hot green tea throughout the day should be sufficient for supplementing weight loss. The exact amount will vary from person to person, depending on how much caffeine they consume and their natural metabolism.

Does green tea count as water intake? ›

Coffee and tea also count in your tally. Many used to believe that they were dehydrating, but that myth has been debunked. The diuretic effect does not offset hydration.

Does green tea clean the liver? ›

The phytochemical constituents within the leaves of green tea assist the body's natural actions in eliminating toxins. Green tea is an excellent supporter of liver function because it contains lots of natural polyphenols. Polyphenols have been shown to support the body's normal detoxification processes.

Can I drink green tea at night? ›

The presence of antioxidants and compounds in green tea makes it a perfect blend for a healthy body and a sound mind. In fact, drinking it at night can just be so miraculous for a good night's sleep. The presence of a compound called Theanine in green tea acts as a main sleep inducing component.

How much green tea is safe? ›

Green tea, when consumed as a beverage, is believed to be safe when used in amounts up to 8 cups per day.

Which tea is the healthiest? ›

Green Tea. Green tea is often touted as the healthiest tea. It is chock full of polyphenols and antioxidants that help to boost brain and heart health. Green tea is considered one of the least processed true teas as it does not undergo oxidation.

What is healthier coffee or green tea? ›

Determining which is better ultimately comes down to your specific needs. Green tea and coffee are both healthy and safe. Green tea may be a better choice for people with anxiety or insomnia. In contrast, coffee may suit you better if you're looking for increased alertness or improved physical performance.

What happens to your skin if you drink green tea everyday? ›

There are many research studies that show that both drinking green tea and applying it topically can have benefits for your skin. Not only can green tea and green tea extract help with acne and help your skin look younger, but it also has the potential for helping to prevent melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancers.

How long does it take to lose belly fat with green tea? ›

One small study conducted at Oklahoma State University, for instance, found that people who drank green tea—and not even that much of it; only 4 cups a day—or took green tea extract lost about 1.3 pounds more over 8 weeks than people who drank water. Some studies suggest even decaf green tea may have a benefit.

Has anyone lost weight with green tea? ›

In one study in 60 obese individuals, those taking green tea extract lost 7.3 more pounds (3.3 kg) and burned 183 more calories per day after three months than those not taking the extract ( 17 ). However, not all studies show that green tea extract boosts metabolism.

How much weight can I lose in a month by drinking green tea? ›

So you can look at losing around at least a few kilos per month by consuming 2-3 cups of green tea regularly. Some expert say that one can lose up to 3 lbs or 1.3 kg every 12 weeks by drinking green tea. Several studies suggest that green tea can boost metabolism and help people burn 3–4% more calories each day.

Why do I feel sick when I drink green tea on an empty stomach? ›

Green tea may cause stomach irritation when brewed too strongly or consumed on an empty stomach (1). Green tea contains tannins that can increase the amount of acid in your stomach. Excess acid can lead to digestive issues including constipation, acid reflux, and nausea.

Does green tea increase collagen? ›

Several in vivo and in vitro studies suggest that green tea supplementation increases the collagen and elastin fiber content, and suppresses collagen degrading enzyme MMP-3 production in the skin, conferring an anti-wrinkle effect.

What should I drink if I don't like water? ›

Juice, smoothies, iced coffee, ice tea, protein shakes, milk, and other drinks can be excellent alternatives to water. You should avoid relying too much on drinks with a high sugar content, such as soda, certain fruit juces, energy drinks and chocolate milk.

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