The health benefits of Green Tea:
Green tea specifically has been associated with protection against certain types of cancer including lung, stomach cancer and its precancerous condition, gastritis. Moreover, an observational study in Japan found that the regular consumption of green tea (more than 3 cups a day) might be protective against recurrence of breast cancer in the early stages.
In addition to its potential anticarcinogenic and antioxidant effects, other studies have shown green tea to have anti-inflammatory, antithrombotic, cholesterol lowering, antiviral and antibacterial properties.
Green tea and skin protection:
A number of animal studies have shown that topical treatment or oral consumption of green tea polyphenols, inhibit chemical carcinogen or ultraviolet radiation-induced skin tumours in different animal models. Treatment of green tea polyphenols to skin has been shown to have a beneficial effect on the biochemical pathways involved in skin inflammation, cell proliferation and chemical tumour promoters. These results have been confirmed in a human model, where topical application of green tea polyphenols protected against UV light induced DNA damage. Based on results mainly from animal studies, many companies are now supplementing their skin care products with green tea extracts.
Green tea extract and weight loss:
Preliminary research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests that an extract from green tea may help with weight loss by speeding up fat oxidation. In this study, researchers conducted a 6 week study of 10 healthy men in their 20's and found that those men who were given a green tea extract used more calories in a day than those who did not.
* Source teahealth.co. uk
Possible Link between Green Tea and Arthritis Prevention
Rheumatoid arthritis is a systemic disease and is one of the most common forms of arthritis. According to an April 13, 1999 news release from the Arthritis Foundation, the disease affects 2.1 million Americans (i.e., 1.5; million women, 600,000 men), and usually strikes in middle age. Researchers conducting a study funded by the Arthritis Foundation report that green tea may be useful in treating or preventing rheumatoid arthritis; however, more research is needed to determine its exact role. According to the release, the polyphenolic compounds present in green tea may limit the onset and subsequent progression of rheumatoid arthritis. Polyphenols are a class of compounds that have strong antioxidant properties (i.e., the ability to halt enzymes that produce carcinogens) .
In three independent experiments, the mice that researchers gave green tea polyphenols (GTP) in water exhibited significantly reduced incidence of arthritis (i.e., 33% to 50% developed arthritis as compared to 84% to 100% of mice not given GTP in water). According to the release, mice given GTP in water were protected significantly from developing arthritis, and if they did develop the disease, its severity was mild. More testing is needed with humans to determine the role of green tea in the treatment and prevention of rheumatoid arthritis.
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