Green tea drinkers show less disability with age: study

(Reuters) – Elderly adults who regularly drink green tea may stay more agile and independent than their peers over time, according to a Japanese study that covered thousands of people.

Green tea contains antioxidant chemicals that may help ward off the cell damage that can lead to disease. Researchers have been studying green tea’s effect on everything from cholesterol to the risk of certain cancers, with mixed results so far.

For the new study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers decided to examine the question of whether green tea drinkers have a lower risk of frailty and disability as they grow older.

Yasutake Tomata of the Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine and his colleagues followed nearly 14,000 adults aged 65 or older for three years.

They found those who drank the most green tea were the least likely to develop “functional disability,” or problems with daily activities or basic needs, such as dressing or bathing.

Specifically, almost 13 percent of adults who drank less than a cup of green tea per day became functionally disabled, compared with just over 7 percent of people who drank at least five cups a day.

“Green tea consumption is significantly associated with a lower risk of incident functional disability, even after adjustment for possible confounding factors,” Tomata and his colleagues wrote.

The study did not prove that green tea alone kept people spry as they grew older.

Green-tea lovers generally had healthier diets, including more fish, vegetables and fruit, as well as more education, lower smoking rates, fewer heart attacks and strokes, and greater mental sharpness.

They also tended to be more socially active and have more friends and family to rely on.

But even with those factors accounted for, green tea itself was tied to a lower disability risk, the researchers said.

People who drank at least five cups a day were one-third less likely to develop disabilities than those who had less than a cup per day. Those people who averaged three or four cups a day had a 25 percent lower risk.

Although it’s not clear how green tea might offer a buffer against disability, Tomata’s team did note that one recent study found green tea extracts seem to boost leg muscle strength in older women.

While green tea and its extracts are considered safe in small amounts, they do contain caffeine and small amounts of vitamin K, which means it could interfere with drugs that prevent blood clotting. SOURCE: bit.ly/wXuZbl

Reporting from New York by Reuters Health; Editing by Elaine Lies and Paul Tait

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Green tea and cancer prevention….

According to the National Cancer Institute, the polyphenols in tea have been shown to decrease tumor growth in laboratory and animal studies and may protect against damage caused by ultraviolet UVB radiation.

In countries where green tea consumption is high, cancer rates tend to be lower, but it is impossible to know for sure whether it is the green tea that prevents cancer in these particular populations or other lifestyle factors.

Some studies have also shown the positive impacts of green tea on the following types of cancer:

  • breast
  • bladder
  • ovarian
  • colorectal (bowel)
  • esophageal (throat)
  • lung
  • prostate
  • skin
  • stomach

Researchers believe that it is the high level of polyphenols in tea that helps kill cancerous cells and stop them from growing. However, the exact mechanisms by which tea interacts with cancerous cells is unknown.

However, other studies have not found that tea can reduce cancer risk. The amount of tea required for cancer-preventive effects also varies widely in studies – from 2-10 cups per day.

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Green Tea Fast Facts and Health benefits

Green tea, native to Japan, China and India, has been consumed and hailed for its health benefits for centuries globally, but has only recently gained popularity in the United States.

Tea is the most consumed beverage in the world behind water. However, 78 percent of the tea consumed worldwide is black and only about 20 percent is green.

All types of tea, except herbal tea, are brewed from the dried leaves of the Camellia sinensis bush. The level of oxidation of the leaves determines the type of tea.

Green tea is made from unoxidized leaves and is one of the less processed types of tea. It therefore contains the most antioxidants and beneficial polyphenols.

Fast facts on green tea

Here are some key points about green tea:

  • green tea has been used in traditional Indian and Chinese medicine
  • there are many different types of green tea available
  • green tea may help prevent a range of ailments including cancer
  • more research is needed to prove many of the health claims surrounding green tea
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2 Healthy Green Tea Recipes…

1. Cinnamon Green Tea

Ingredients

  • 1 inch Ceylon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon green tea leaves
  • 1 cup water

How To Prepare

  1. Transfer the water to a stainless steel pot.
  2. Toss the cinnamon stick into the pot and boil the water for 10 minutes.
  3. Now, let it cool till the water’s temperature comes down to 85 degrees C.
  4. Add 1 teaspoon of green tea to the pot and  let it steep for 2-3 minutes.
  5. Strain the tea into your cup and enjoy!

2. Lemongrass Green Tea

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons chopped lemongrass
  • 1 teaspoon green tea leaves
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon honey

How To Prepare

  1. Transfer the water to a stainless steel pot.
  2. Toss in the lemongrass and bring the water to a boil. Let it boil for 5 minutes.
  3. Remove the pot from the flame and let the water cool till the temperature is 80-85 degrees C.
  4. Now, add the green tea and let it steep for 3 minutes.
  5. Strain the tea into your cup.
  6. Add honey and stir well before drinking.

These are four variations and you can add any other ingredient and prepare a variety of flavorful green tea. But, there are people who do not like green tea at all. That doesn’t mean that they must deprive themselves of this amazing beverage. So, here are a few green tea recipe ideas for those who do not like green tea.

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How Can You Make FRESH Green Tea At Home? This is one proven way….

Using green tea is quite simple. The easiest way is to drink the tea. You can mix green tea leaves with other beneficial ingredients like honey or turmeric to prepare potent face masks or face packs – you can also use these to enhance hair health.

Alright. So what fun would it be without knowing the facts, right?

 

Green tea preparation is different than that of black tea that we make at home. You need to follow some simple steps. While making green tea, do keep in mind that if the tea leaves are steeped in water that’s over 80-85°C, the tea will become bitter. So, steep it in water that’s not too hot. Here are the steps for green tea brewing with leaves.

What You Need:

  • FRESH Green tea leaves – the basic quantity would be 1 teaspoon for 1 cup of green tea. 
  • A washed and dried tea strainer. 
  • A cup
  • A preferably a China Teapot
  • 1 cup of water

Step 1

Take one teaspoon of green tea leaves. If you want to make more than a cup of green tea, take 1 teaspoon of green tea leaves for each cup.

Step 2

Now, take the tea leaves in a strainer/sieve and keep aside.

Step 3

Now, take a tea pot and the water. If you want to use a glass teapot instead, go ahead. The ideal temperature for green tea is 80°C to 85°C, so keep an eye on the water to make sure it’s not boiling. If it starts boiling anyway, just switch off the gas/heat and let it cool for a bit (say, for 30-45 seconds).

Step 4

Now, place the sieve/ strainer over the cup or mug.

Step 5

Next, pour the hot water into the cup and let the tea steep for 2 minutes. This is the step where we need to be very careful. Not everyone likes their tea strong, so, to check whether the tea is just right, keep a spoon handy and drink a spoonful of tea every 30-45 seconds to find out if the flavor is right for you.

Step 6

Now, take out the sieve and keep it aside. If you want, you may add 1 teaspoon honey.

Step 7

Stir the honey in and let the drink cool for a few seconds. Enjoy your cup of green tea.

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Does Green Tea Have Any Benefits For Your Hair?

Green tea has advantages for the hair too. Its healthy constituents, especially the antioxidants, improve scalp health and consequently strengthen hair. The tea might even prevent male pattern baldness.

Stimulates Hair Growth

Green tea inhibits the growth of DHT (Dihydrotestosterone), which hinders hair growth and causes hair fall. The components of green tea react with testosterone, making sure that the amount of testosterone in the blood remains balanced so that it does not react with 5-alpha reductase and convert to DHT.

Due to its antiseptic properties, it also helps in preventing and curing common hair problems such as dandruff and psoriasis. It achieves this by reducing inflammation.

Green tea is also known to stimulate hair growth and soften the hair. Hence, it might also prevent male pattern baldness. It contains polyphenols and vitamins  E and C, which are known to promote lustrous hair.

You can easily make a green tea rinse at home by 2 teaspoons of strained fresh green tea in half a liter of water and using this as the last rinse after you have shampooed and conditioned your hair.

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More Benefits Of Green Tea For Skin….Anti-Aging and Sunburn…

Anti-Aging Benefits

The anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants in green tea can delay skin aging or its signs like expression lines and wrinkles.

You can use a green tea and honey face mask for this purpose. Moisten the green tea leaves and mix with honey. Apply the pack on your face and leave it on for 20 minutes. Rinse with warm water.

The antioxidants in both green tea and honey help slow down aging – while the antibacterial properties of honey cleanse the skin and improve the texture.

Protects Skin Against Sunburn

Green tea acts as a natural sunscreen. It helps in preventing the free radicals from settling between the skin cells, which otherwise cause skin issues like sunburn and rashes.

To make a green tea sunscreen at home, boil two cups of water with half a cup of green tea leaves for 5 to 10 minutes on medium heat. Separate the leaves and let the solution cool down to room temperature. Take a small quantity of the solution on a clean cotton ball and apply it on a clean face. You can store the rest in an airtight container for later use.

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