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10 Health Benefits Of Japanese Green Tea
Though all tea comes from the same plant, Camellia Sinensis, including black, white, and green tea, there are different varieties of tea within each of these categories. Japanese green tea is differentiated from other kinds of green tea by its growing location and cultivation. Japanese green tea is part of traditional cultural traditions which take place across Japan as part of their tea drinking heritage.
Japanese green tea diverges from its Chinese counterpart during the cultivation process. Though both kinds of tea are grown from the same plant, Chinese green tea is pan-fried, whereas Japanese green tea is steamed. Steaming the tea gives it a sweeter, seaweed-like flavour.
Well-known types of Japanese green tea include, Sencha dubbed the everyday tea in Japan, and Matcha which has taken root in coffee shops across the world, offering a variety of matcha lattes to customers.
With all this variety you may be wondering what Japanese green tea can do for you. We’ve gathered some research and found ten health benefits linked to Japanese green tea. Read on to find out how green tea can benefit you and why you should go out and buy Japanese tea today!
List of Benefits1. Rich In Bioactive Compounds
Japanese green tea is rich in bioactive compounds which are chemicals found in some foods that can promote good health. The bioactive compounds found in green tea are:
- Polyphenols - These are natural compounds which reduce inflammation and can help fight some cancers.
- Catechins - Green tea contains EGCG which is an antioxidant compound that prevents cell damage and protects against free radicals in the body.
2. Improves Brain Function
Japanese green teas, such as Zen green tea, can improve brain function and alertness, and you may be wanting to ask does Japanese green tea have caffeine in it? Well, it does. Though not as much caffeine as is present in coffee, green tea has enough caffeine to improve alertness without the jittery side effects sometimes suffered by coffee drinkers. Caffeine can improve mood, reaction time and memory too.
Caffeine isn’t the only brain boosting compound in Japanese green tea though, green tea also contains L-theanine. This is an amino acid which can cross the blood brain barrier and increase dopamine and the production of alpha waves in the brain.
Green tea is said to produce a much stabler focus than with coffee because it only contains relatively small levels of caffeine along with L-theanine.
3. Increases The Body’s Ability to Burn Fat
Japanese green tea has been proven to boost the body’s ability to burn fat and to increase metabolic rate. A number of studies agree that green tea has this effect on the body which is why you usually find green tea extracts in fat burning supplements.
4. Rich In Antioxidants
All teas are full of antioxidants and Japanese green tea is no different. Oxidative damage leads to chronic inflammation, which is linked to several diseases, including many cancers. Antioxidants fight oxidative stress in cells, prevent inflammation and protect the body against a range of diseases. A number of studies have confirmed that tea drinkers are less likely to develop certain cancers.
5. May Protect Against Neurodegenerative Diseases
The catechin compounds in green tea have been proven to have protective effects on neurons in the brain, preventing brain degeneration. This means tea drinkers may be more protected against degenerative diseases such as, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.
6. Contributes To Heart Health
Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death worldwide. These diseases include heart disease and stroke. Tea drinkers may be more protected against these diseases, indeed, according to one study, tea drinkers have a 31% lower risk of dying from a cardiovascular disease.
A major risk factor for these diseases is high cholesterol level. Green tea is known to improve overall cholesterol levels, as well as LDL (bad) cholesterol levels.
7. Green Tea Drinkers May Live Longer
In a recent study, researchers found that those who drank the most tea were least likely to die during the study period. With all the health benefits of green tea, it’s no wonder that this is the case. Green tea drinkers have less chance of dying from a variety of diseases, including from heart disease and stroke.
8. Its Packed Full Of Vitamins And Minerals
Japanese green tea contains a whole range of vital vitamins and nutrients, such as:
- Vitamin C, which protects cells, maintains healthy skin, blood vessels, bones and cartilage and helps with wound healing.
- Vitamins B1, which helps the body to break food down to release energy and keeps the nervous system healthy.
- Vitamin B2, a vitamin that helps keep skin, eyes, and the nervous system healthy and in good condition, and also helps release energy from food.
- Vitamin A, which supports your body’s natural defences against illnesses and infections, helps vision and keeps skin healthy.
- Vitamin E, a vitamin with vital anti-aging effects.
- Potassium, which controls fluid balance and helps heart muscles function properly.
- Calcium, a mineral which helps build bones and keep teeth healthy, regulates muscle contractions and helps blood to clot normally.
- Magnesium, which converts food to energy.
- Phosphorous, which supports strong bones and teeth.
9. May Help With Anxiety
L-theanine, as discussed before, can contribute to alertness and good brain function, but it also helps other issues including anxiety. L-theanine increases the activity of the inhibitor GABA, which leads to anti-anxiety effects.
10. Can Help To Protect The Liver
Recent studies have shown that green tea, and particularly matcha teas like Zen matcha, can decrease the risk of liver disease. It’s also been shown to reduce levels of liver enzymes which are markers of liver damage.
Japanese green tea is full of nutrients and compounds that contribute to a healthier life, packed full of vitamins and minerals, it’s no wonder this is the drink of choice for an entire nation. We think everyone should be drinking Japanese green tea.
If you’ve read our post and been converted too, why not shop our site and reap the benefits of organic Japanese matcha green tea, or maybe browse our loose leaf green teas and find a sencha to tickle your tastebuds.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do Japanese drink green tea every day?
Green tea is the drink of choice for people in Japan in the mornings. They also drink it in the afternoons and offer it to guests. Tea is served in restaurants free of charge. Green tea is drunk daily by many Japanese people.
What happens if I drink green tea everyday?
Drinking green tea everyday means you will reap the myriad of health benefits offered by green tea. With less caffeine, green tea offers a stabler boost of energy and comes packed with a number of vital nutrients. Experts recommend drinking 3 – 4 cups a day to truly reap the benefits.
Does Japanese green tea help lose weight?
Japanese green tea is usually found in fat burning supplements as it contains compounds which increase the body’s ability to burn fat. The caffeine in green tea also makes activity easier and so green tea can help people to lose weight.
When should I drink Japanese green tea?
You can replace your morning coffee with a green tea to experience the same buzz but with added health benefits. You can also drink green tea in between meals to maximise nutrient absorption.