May 22, 2012

13 Amazing Health Benefits of Green Tea That Everyone Can Enjoy

What Exactly Is Green Tea, Anyway?

Green Tea Benefits
Green tea is made using the leaves of the Chinese Camellia sinensis plant that are then applied to heat quickly after picking, either by steam or by dry cooking in hot pans. These methods minimizes oxidation, which is what is thought to give the green tea benefits we have heard so much about.
The good news is that health professionals agree that a daily dose of green tea benefits your health in a number of ways.
Whether you choose to drink green tea daily, choose a high-quality health supplement that includes green tea as an active ingredient, or you do as I do and combine the two together for the best possible results – green tea is amazing for your health.

13 Amazing Health Benefits of Green Tea That Everyone Can Enjoy

I have read a great deal on the benefits of green tea and the studies and science behind it are compelling. Based on everything I’ve read, I agree with the scientists, nutritions and healthcare professionals that it really is beneficial to your health.
The majority of green tea benefits seem to stem from the powerful antioxidants, called catechins, which scavenge your cells for free radicals that could otherwise damage DNA, and contribute to cancer, blocked arteries and blood clots.
Because of the minimal processing – leaves are steamed instead of fermented – green tea catechins are unique and contain a more concentrated form ofepigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), which is the active ingredient that many studies have highlighted as the driving force behind green tea benefits.
Green tea’s impact on cancer and heart disease seems very promising, and many people have experienced life changing benefits as a result of taking it daily. Below is a comprehensive list of benefits you will attain with a regular dose of green tea.
  1. Lowers your risk of cancer. Although the studies of how green tea affects cancerous cells are still in their infancy, there have been human trials which indicate that it does inhibit cells from developing cancer. EGCG in green tea regulates and inhibits cancer growth by killing cells that are growing inappropriately. In Japan, a study of 500 women with Stage I and Stage II breast cancer found that increasing their green tea consumption before and after surgery significantly lowered the risk of recurrence. Another analysis of 22 studies of the correlation between green tea and lung cancer concluded that by increasing your intake of green tea by two cups a day may reduce the risk of developing lung cancer by 18%.
  2. Eases the pain of rheumatoid arthritis. Study results reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences shows that polyphenol antioxidants in green tea benefits suffers of arthritis by reducing the incidence and severity of the disease. EGCG protects cartilage destruction and reduces joint swelling and pain. This leads many scientists and health professionals to recommend green tea as a legitimate remedy for treating arthritis.
  3. Stabilizes your cholesterol levels. Researchers believe that green tea lowers your cholesterol levels by reducing its absorption in your digestive tract and increasing the rate of which it is excreted. However, your body does need cholesterol to build cell membranes, insulate nerve fibres and create hormones. For this, green tea benefits you by preventing the conversion of LDL cholesterol into it’s more dangerous, oxidized form. Oxidized LDL is one of the main factors in the development of atherosclerosis (the build of plaque that blocks your arteries as LDL gets sticky and clings to your artery walls) and increases your risk of heart attack or stroke. The amazing antioxidant effects of green tea protect this, helping to keep your arteries clean.
  4. Prevents cardiovascular disease. A Japanese study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed significant reductions in deaths from cardiovascular disease among green tea drinkers. The study found that over an 11 year test period, individuals who drank more than 5 cups per day had a 16% less chance of mortality and mortality related to cardiovascular disease when compared to individuals who drank less than one cup per day. They also found that green tea was especially beneficially in preventing strokes, due in large part to the antioxidants and how they prevent clogged arteries.
  5. Boosts your immune system. Catechins, the antioxidant polyphenol compounds, have been shown to have a major impact in your immune system. Research conducted by the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in 2003 revealed that theanine, found in green tea, boosted the activity of the gamma delta T cells that form part of our adaptive and innate immunity. The study followed a group of coffee drinkers and a group of tea drinkers who each drank 600ml of their drink daily. Blood samples taken four weeks later quite clearly showed that production of these anti-bacterial proteins were five times higher in those drinking tea.
  6. Promotes weight loss. Both green tea and green tea extract have been shown to fight obesity and lower LDL cholesterol – both of which ultimately lead to a reduced risk of heart disease and diabetes. The polyphenols in green tea are extremely useful for dissolving triglycerides, a substance in the liver and small intestine made up of mostly sugar and fat, and this is thought to be the reason green tea benefits fat loss. EGCG is also known to stimulate your metabolism and accelerate weight loss. When combined with the caffeine in green tea, this causes your central nervous system to release fat into the bloodstream to be used as fuel which burns your body fat off.
  7. Reduces tooth decay. Antibacterial properties found in green tea are also used by your body to kill the bacteria that causes plaque on your teeth. Research by the Journal of Periodontology has also shown that for every cup of green tea you drink, there is a decrease in indicators for gum disease. Fluoride is also found in green tea which helps to protect against cavities.
  8. Effective in the treatment of multiple sclerosis. In 2007, Dr. Orhan Aktas from the Institute of Neuroimmunology conducted a study of how green tea benefits sufferers of multiple sclerosis. While current patients do not have many options to prevent tissue damage and disability, he found that the flavonoid EGCG found in green tea could have a huge impact on multiple sclerosis. He concluded that EGCG is capable of directly protecting against neuronal injury in living brain tissue and that EGCG constituents may open up a new therapeutic avenue for treating MS by combining anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective capacities.
  9. Slows the onset of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. A recent report published in the journal Phytomedicine has found substantial evidence that the enzymes found in green tea protect your brain cells from damage. Another study conducted by the University of South Florida looked at the effects of antioxidant EGCG. It was shown to be a protein blocker which prevented the chemical reactions that can lead to nerve damage that can lead to Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
  10. Fights the cause of allergies in your body. Methylated epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) has been shown to block a cells receptor involved in producing an allergic response. By blocking the production of histamine and immunoglobulin E (IgE), two compounds in the body that are chiefly involved in triggering and sustaining allergic reactions, EGCG could very well be the compound which prevents you from having watery eyes, sneezing and coughing.
  11. Helps to fend off infections. Again, as one of the main benefits of green tea, EGCG has been highlighted by a study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology as being able to prevent infections, including the HIV virus. EGCG binds with CD4 immune system T-cell receptors and stops HIV from doing the same to reduce the risk of infection. While it is still way too early to peg green tea as a cure for HIV, an Egyptian study has shown that combining antibiotics with green tea significantly boosts the effectiveness of the antibiotic. In fact, when tested against 28 disease-causing microorganisms, green tea enhanced the bacteria killing power in every single case.
  12. Reduces and prevents acne. Green tea benefits acne in a number of different ways. It’s antibacterial properties attack and kill the acne bacteria while the anti-inflammatory benefits of green tea reduce the swelling and redness. Antioxidants fight against free radicals which damage the skin and make it more susceptible to acne also help to balance hormone levels to help prevent future breakouts from happening.
  13. Slows the aging process to prevent wrinkles. One of the latest benefits of green tea is the effect it has on your skin and the aging process. It is again down to the antioxidants that prevent cell oxidation and damage that can make you look older than you really are. Studies are mixed on this particular green tea benefit as new research has come to light which suggests the full benefits can only be had by applying green tea topically to your skin. However, many people have found that potent green tea extracts do have a positive effect on their skin, leaving it softer, more supply and younger looking.

Recommended Green Tea Supplement

Over the years I have tried many varieties of green tea, from steeping my own, to organic green tea in non-bleached tea bags. What I have found, and this seems to match with what the science and research shows, is that you would need to drink a lot of green tea each day to get all the benefits. For some people this is achievable. For many though, it is difficult to drink up to ten cups of green tea per day. If you do decide to try and drink that much green tea each day, I recommend you use either Yogi Green Tea (if you prefer to use simple tea bags) or you can steep your own using Rishi Organic Green Tea. Be prepared though, if you start drinking more than a couple of cups per day you will end up going to the bathroom a lot!
Total Balance Unisex
The approach I use, and the one I have been recommending to friends and family for years, is to combine a couple of delicious cups of green tea each day with a health supplement that provides a high-quality amount of potent green tea extract. This allows me to get all the green tea benefits without having to go to the bathroom every twenty minutes.
For this I use Total Balance by Xtend Life Natural Products because not only does it contain a polyphenol and catechin rich blend of green tea extract, but it also contains every vitamin and mineral your body needs to operate at full capacity. The unique blend will help you to look and feel great, enjoying all the benefits of green tea and other healthy ingredients – without dozens of toilet breaks.
Best of all, you can try Total Balance now without risk as Xtend Life offer a 6-month money back guarantee. Unsatisfied with their product? Simply send it back for a full refund. No other supplement company I know has that level of confidence in their products. Check them out for yourself and I’m convinced that they will save you time and money, help you to combine all your supplements into one simple dosage, and they’ll make you feel better than ever before. They did for me and my family!

10 ways to reduce cholesterol Heart Health

Follow these cholesterol reducing tips and you'll live a longer, healthier life

1. Eat the right kind of fat to reduce cholestrol
Foods high in monounsaturated fats, such as almonds and avocados, will boost HDL. Almonds are 70 per cent monounsaturated fat and also contain two powerful antioxidants: vitamin E and flavonoids, which prevent the oxidation of LDL. Foods rich in omega 3 fatty acids, such as salmon and flaxseeds, also have a good HDL-raising reputation.

2. Avoid coffee to reduce cholestrol
Caffeine junkies should note that downing three to six cups a day will raise your cholesterol by eight to ten per cent, according to a US National Institutes of Health study. The report also found that coffee drinkers experienced an 18 per cent rise in their fatty acids in the blood, the stuff that drives the production of bad cholesterol.

3. Choose low-GI carbs to reduce cholestrol

People on high-carbohydrate diets crammed with pasta and bread tend to have lower HDL levels than those who eat plenty of protein, good fats and fruit and veg. Switching to carbs with a low glycaemic index (GI) rating such as beans and wholemeal bread will also help you keep your energy levels stable and lose weight.

4. Jump around to reduce cholestrol
Working out raises your levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL), commonly known as 'good cholesterol'. HDL is the stuff that takes cholesterol away from cells - where high levels can increase the risk of coronary heart disease - and back to the liver, where it's either broken down or excreted. But this doesn't mean you need to run marathons. Studies have found that your HDL levels will increase by doing just four moderate 30-minute sessions of aerobic exercise a week.

5. Lose your gut to reduce cholestrol
Here's another reason to banish the belly: being overweight raises total blood cholesterol levels. Not only will carrying extra inches around your waist throw your cholesterol levels out of balance, but it will also raise levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or 'bad cholesterol' - the harmful kind that allows cholesterol to clog blood vessels.

6. Know your levels to reduce cholestrol
The Department of Health's guidelines state that your total cholesterol should be less than 5 millimoles per litre (mmol/l) and your LDL cholesterol should be less than 3mmol/l. Home-testing kits are available but are usually inconclusive, so if you take one and the reading is high you should make an appointment to see your GP. He or she can arrange a blood test, which will diagnose your blood cholesterol levels and, if necessary, test for conditions that can be responsible for raising cholesterol, such as an underactive thyroid, diabetes and kidney and liver problems.

7. Stop smoking to reduce cholestrol
Along with all its other effects, smoking lowers HDL levels. So if you're fond of the odd fag, stubbing it out is the simplest way to give your good cholesterol a lift.

8. Keep calm to reduce cholestrol
Men who are able to keep calm when confronted with stressful situations benefit from increased levels of good cholesterol. Researchers at Oregon State University and the University of Hawaii found that people who reacted to stressful situations with hostility had lower HDL levels than those who were able to control their aggression.

9. Avoid saturated fat to reduce cholestrol

Cut back on foods that are rich in saturated and trans fats, because these stimulate the liver to produce extra cholesterol. The liver usually produces about 1g of cholesterol a day, but this can be multiplied by the consumption of foods such as fatty cuts of meat, ready meals, puddings, biscuits, cakes, pies and pastries.

10. Eat lots of fibre to reduce cholestrol
The type of soluble fibre found in oats, apples, pears, peas and kidney beans among other foods can slow cholesterol and raise HDL levels. Eating foods such as these also helps to keep your gut feeling satisfied, which can help you lose weight. A bowl of wholegrain cereal or porridge with berries is a good way to start to the day.