Are Green Tea Diets Effective?
Recent studies have revealed that green tea can actually assist in the process of weight loss. The catechin epigalllocatechin gallate (ECGC) is the culprit.
ECGC is touted for many health benefits including effective results against high blood pressure and the prevention of cancer. For centuries, Asians have used green tea regularly.
Green tea is made by steaming fresh tea leaves. Black tea leaves are fermented leaves. Because green tea is not fermented, it has a higher concentration of polyphenols and flavonols like ECGC.
To compare, black tea only contains about 3-10% polyphenols. The content in green tea is much higher, 30-40%.
It is advisable to include green tea as part of a healthy diet plan. A green tea diet plan should include fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds and fresh, wild caught fish rich in omega 3 fatty acids (such as salmon). By including green tea into a healthy diet, it may help you to lose weight. A green tea diet alone will not melt off excess weight overnight. As part of a smart diet plan, green tea will boost the metabolism which will help to accelerate weight loss.
It is thought that the ability of ECGC to increase heat production in the body (or thermogenesis) is what creates calorie-burning properties. The ECGC will actually increase the number of calories that are burned during the course of the day.
In one study, men were compared for their expenditure of energy when they were given caffeine, plain water or green tea. The research showed that metabolism was actually increased by 4% in the green tea group. A green tea diet should consist of healthy foods with the addition of green tea as a complement for enhanced weight loss.
Green tea alone or as part of an unhealthy diet high in processed foods will not have the same effect. If you use green tea wisely, it can have a positive effect. Adding green tea to an unhealthy diet may benefit you to some extent, but it will not induce weight loss.
Keep in mind that even though there is less caffeine than in coffee, green tea does contain caffeine. If you are sensitive to caffeine, chose a decaffeinated version.
Check with a medical professional prior to embarking on any diet or weight loss program. If you are taking medications, be sure to check for any potential interactions that may occur with the polyphenols contained in green tea.