green teaThe benefits found in tea are astounding.  However, because there are many different kinds of tea, it’s difficult to know what the benefits are in each one.  This is the first in a series of posts I am calling “a basic guide to tea benefits” for those who like to keep things simple.  It’s nice to know what benefits you are getting in the teas you are drinking every morning or throughout your day.  Along with loving the taste of your tea, you can cherish it even more after reading what benefits it is bringing to your body.

We will start with basic green tea, from the Camellia sinensis plant.  Green tea, which originated in China, is a very rich source of flavonoids.  Flavonoids are plant-derived compounds that are antioxidants, which provide green tea with numerous preventative properties.  One of the preventative properties is blocking the oxidation of LDL cholesterol, and increasing the HDL cholesterol in our bodies.  We want more HDL cholesterol in our bodies and less LDL, so our arteries can function properly.

According to one article on the benefits of drinking green tea, green tea is the best food source for a group called catechins.  From a study done testing catechins in test tubes, it was found that “catechins are more powerful than vitamins C and E in halting oxidative damage to cells and appear to have other disease-fighting properties.”

Green tea is said to prevent many diseases, including cancer, heart disease, infections, cardiovascular disease, and more.  The website Green Tea Benefits states, “By drinking the recommended amounts of green tea, the human body is cleansed from toxins that usually cause a lot of health problems, which in the future improves your health and your lifestyle as well.”  To get the most benefits out of green tea, it is recommended to drink the tea freshly brewed.

With two extraordinary properties of green tea – flavonoids and catechins – there is no wonder there is such a hype about drinking green tea to protect our health.  Stay tuned for Part 2 of A Basic Guide to Tea Benefits, when we will look at the health benefits of black tea.