As a country struggling with soaring numbers of obesity and poor nutrition, we often look for other cultures to provide us with better ways of doing things, cultures that seem to be doing a much better job at curbing obesity than our own. One super food that we have adopted from places like China, Japan and countries in the Middle East is green tea and green tea weight loss is an idea that is in full flight. When I was growing up, the only tea I knew of was regular old Lipton Tea.
However, in today’s world it seems that every brand, store and vending machine offers some sort of green tea beverage. And it does not stop there. The vitamins and supplement industry have created tons of ways to incorporate green tea into your diet by simply popping a pill or even chewing a piece of green tea gum. So what is it about green tea that has made it such a buzzword for marketers? Does this tea really have the credibility to support an entire weight loss movement or is this just another marketing ploy to mask a product as a healthy choice?
There does seem to be some indication that green tea may help increase metabolic rate and regulation of total body weight, but the evidence is not overwhelming and it’s not known whether increasing metabolic rate with stimulants is healthy. One thing for sure is that clean green tea cannot hurt your weight loss journey.
Clean Green Tea?
Here is what I mean… A small green tea latte may pack in 150 calories, with a whopping 29 grams of sugar. Does that sound like green tea will promote weight loss to you? How about Lipton’s Green Tea Iced Tea. It taste good and if it can help you lose weight, it sounds like a healthy choice. Wrong! By looking at the ingredient list we can see that “green tea” is fourth in line to water, high fructose corn syrup and citric acid. Unfortunately, it appears that the value of this tea has been lost in translation.
The healthy benefits of these leaves have been converted to a weight loss fad. Unfortunately, we as consumers cannot mindlessly pick up a drink that says “green tea” and assume that we are reaping all of its benefits.
For many products, claiming to contain green tea for weight loss is meant to mask the massive amounts of calories, carbs, sugar and unhealthy ingredients these products actually contain.
A cup of green tea is something that is meant to be nurtured and enjoyed. Since we borrowed green tea from the Middle East and Asia, we should treat it and consume it like the people who know it best. In China, “tea-drinking” is an art form that encompasses much more than just the drinking of tea. It includes the physical act of its brewing and even what type of pot or cups it is served in.
Whether green tea weight loss is a legit form of weight loss or not, green tea without the added sugar is beneficial to everyone’s diet. Its health benefits were known in China as early as the prehistoric period. Green tea is particularly rich in health-promoting flavonoids, which account for 30% of the dry weight of a leaf. The magic behind green teas healthy punch is epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), right alongside the better-known antioxidants like vitamins E and C.
Although you may be familiar with what these nutrients actually do, all you really need to know is that these green tea leaves fight for you. They fight against cancer, stroke, heart disease, osteoporosis and viral infections and the list goes on.
For the best effects, drink one to three cups of green tea a day, steeped or brewed. You can either use loose tea or tea bags, but hold the sugar. Every cell of your body will be infused with green tea’s fighting powers. Green tea does contain caffeine, which you should be aware of.
I use my green tea fix as an afternoon boost when I can’t recuperate my energy from rest. When I am on the go, I’ll stop at Starbucks and get an unsweetened, iced green Tazo tea. The only ingredient they add is the ice. Try it out! And start a new relationship with green tea. Nix the fad marketing claims associated with green tea weight loss and appreciate it as a treat for your body and health which results in natural weight loss anyway.