Green Tea and Weight Loss – What is the Connection?
Recently, there have been many news articles discussing the connection between green tea and weight loss. More people are jumping on the green tea band wagon in order to take advantage of its weight loss benefits. Is it really effective at helping us to drop those excess pounds?
Experts seem to agree that drinking 3-5 cups or more each day of green tea is needed in order to enjoy its benefits. It is said that one can lose up to 7 pounds per year simply by consuming the optimal amounts. When this figure is broken down, daily green tea consumption actually can help us burn an extra 70 calories each day.
Green tea contains polyphenols and catechins that can boost metabolism as they synergistically work to oxidize fat and burn calories. These substances are also said to be effective cancer fighters and should be considered a part of one’s cancer prevention regime.
Research has shown that green tea extract ups our metabolic rate by 4% over a 24-hour period. The catechins in green tea will inhibit glucose from moving into fat cells. This assists with the regulation of glucose inhibiting fat absorption. By regulating glucose, blood sugar will not rise as quickly after we eat preventing spikes in insulin levels. Fat storage slows when insulin is decreased.
At the University of Chicago, researchers studied the effects of green tea on the appetites of rats. When injected with green tea extract, rats lost up to 21% of their body weight. After seven days of receiving these injections, they consumed 60% less food.
I happen to enjoy green tea very much and find it easy to fit in the recommended 3-5 cups daily. But for some people, a green tea weight loss supplement may be the answer. There are many formulas available in health food stores containing high concentrations of the beneficial components of green tea. When considering over the counter supplementation, always be sure to read the labels and know exactly what you are getting. Avoid products containing additives, chemicals or elements that you cannot pronounce or identify.
While the range of benefits touted for green tea keep broadening, it is not a magic bullet. It can be an effective addition to your weight loss regime but should not be the only lifestyle change you make.
Consuming a diet that is rich in organic fruits, vegetables and whole grains is optimal for health. While green tea and weight loss may indeed be linked, diet and exercise need to play a role if you are serious about losing weight and keeping it off.