Success Stories

Monday, January 31, 2011

Nutrition Tip of the Day!

You may have heard a lot of hype surrounding the flavanoid epigallocatechin gallate AKA (EGCG) the anti-oxidant in green or white tea. Researchers believe that EGCG is responsible for a number of positive health attributes.  Green or white tea can be helpful to anyone regardles of their goal.  Lets take a look at what some of the research shows.

-EGCG  increases maximal oxygen uptake in adults (VO2 Max).  In simple terms, over the long run drinking Green or White tea may help you excercise harder/longer.

-Consumption of Green Tea is associated with a decrease in cardiovascular mortality.

-There is research showing that ECGC can lower blood pressure,decrease LDL cholesterol (the bad stuff), and inhibit inflammation.

-Green tea may help prevent / improve many conditions from heart disease and diabetes to cancer!

-There is conflicting research on Green Tea and fat loss.  Lets just put it this way: green tea over time may help give you an advantage in losing weight, you are not going to suddenly drop lbs because you start drinking more green tea. If anything I would attribute the weight loss effects of green tea to its mild caffiene content (Slight appetite suppressant) and the fact that it virtually has no calories which is a great thing because we should be eating our calories instead of drinking them!

In order to see some of the health  benefits listed above.  Aim to drink three cups of green or white tea daily and skip the sugar!  Lightly sweetening your tea with honey may improve the antioxidant capacity of your tea.  Make sure that if you are caffeine sensitive or drinking it before bedtime you get the decaffeinated type!  Depending on where its grown and how its brewed green tea can vary highly in caffeine levels... but a typical cup will have somewhere between 20-45 mg or about half or a third a cup of coffee.  Remember that homemade iced tea is a great way to break the monotony of drinking just water... You can make a batch yourself by adding six tea bags of your favorite tea to a pitcher of boiled water and letting it brew for five minutes add lemon and honey until you like the taste and put in the fridge and let cool.  Iced tea like this is a great way to get antioxidants without the extra calories from sugar.

For a while researchers feared that drinking to much tea may be harmful towards thiamine and iron stores important substances in the body.   Americans seem to be fine because a diet that meets its vitamin C needs appears to protect you from the possible side effects of drinking to much tea.  This worry in my opinion is very alarmist and obviously people have drank tea for hundreds of years with no ill effects, but in case you worry anyway squeeze a bit of lemon juice into your tea and remember to eat your fruits and veggies!

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