Superfoods part 9
In it we post health commentary & reviews of books, eBooks, & other things that improve or protect your health or which enable you to live longer, to be more prosperous, & to be more effective.
Today’s post: Wednesday, 4-26-2006 Superfoods & Honor Roll Foods, part 9
Green & black tea.
Green tea has some health benefits that are greater or at least more written about than black tea. But it usually has less caffeine.
Black tea shares many of the health benefits of green tea; & it is usually higher in caffeine. In addition, black tea, besides being readily available as straight black tea, has flavored versions like Earl Grey & Chai tea that you either may like better or enjoy as a change of pace.
Both green & black tea are high in a flavonoid that one large study showed reduced the incidence of breast cancer. (Broccoli was also high in it.)
Green tea also directly caused prostate cancer cells to self-destruct in a test outside the body according to one study I saw reported.
And, both green & black tea are high in other antioxidants. Green tea is thought to have somewhat more.
(Green tea extract is available as a supplement also. So you can get many of its health benefits without drinking green tea.)
And, strangely enough, the fact that both green & black tea have less caffeine than coffee is an advantage in several ways.:
Both green & black tea help wake you up & keep you mentally sharp. But both do so without causing many of the problems coffee can often cause.
One of the most important was reported by Dr Dean Edell on his TV show. Since many people work by the theory if one is good, five or more is better & your body tends to acclimate to coffee over time, many people drink far more than one to three cups a day.
This produces side effects like feeling jittery or seriously overanxious in many people.
But even worse, Dr Edell said that more than two cups a day tends to be counterproductive & keep this over-consumption going.
What happens is that three or more cups of coffee a day, two or more for some people, keeps working after you go to sleep & keeps you from getting the full value from your sleep.
This makes it harder than it should be to get up the next day. And, you now need extra cups of coffee to compensate for this effect.
There are two ways to use green or black tea to avoid this effect.
1. You can simply switch to tea from coffee. (You can drink ten cups a day of tea at first to break in if you need to.)
This is the one to choose for the most health benefits or it is if you need or the caffeine; but get bad side effects from the much larger amounts in coffee.
For example, I drink 5 cups of tea a day on weekdays & only two on weekends with no problem.
If I did that with coffee, I’d be groggy & get a headache.
2. But if you like coffee & have no problems with it, the second way to use tea is to have your first cup of coffee of the day or that one & a cup in the early afternoon; & then drink tea when you want more of a pick up after that or something to drink on a break -- instead of coffee or soft drinks.
Either way, you then get health benefits from tea & can avoid the side effects of too much coffee like sleeping badly from too much caffeine.
In addition to helping you stay mentally sharp without overdoing it & possibly making you feel anxious, green tea is high in a substance called theanine which has a calming effect that does not slow you down or sedate you.
So if coffee makes you overanxious, green tea may be a great choice for you.
(Theanine is available as a supplement also. It’s one I’ve not tried personally, so I can’t recommend it from testing it. But you might find it helpful.)
In addition, green tea has a slight metabolism boosting effect that may help you lose &/or keep off a few pounds of bodyfat.
So, for all these reasons, green & black tea are definitely superfoods.