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Can Eating Whole Green Tea Leaves Extend Your Life?

Green tea has been the object of much interest recently in the scientific and nutritional communities. This is because green tea contains very high amounts of flavonoids. This group of nutrients is thought by researchers to prevent various diseases including heart disease, and cancer.

Flavonoids are antioxidants. This means that they neutralize what are called “free radicals,” tiny particles which can damage the body or cause disease if they are present in high enough numbers. Free radicals are also thought to play a major role in the aging process. By consuming large amounts of flavonoids, the body can stop free radicals, which in turn helps to prevent major disease and slow down the aging process.

Flavonoids are present in many common foods, including fruits and vegetables such as onions and apples. However, they exist in their greatest concentrations in green tea. This leads some researchers to believe that consuming green tea on a regular basis could actually have real long term health benefits.

Brewed Tea versus Whole Leaf Consumption

There are flavonoids in both black and green tea leaves. In a study performed by the USDA, it was found that green tea has much higher flavonoid levels than black tea. However, much more significant differences were found between the flavonoid levels of whole tea leaves and that of brewed tea. According to this information, the most efficient way to increase your flavonoid intake is to eat whole green tea leaves. This is simply because they contain a greater overall dosage of flavonoids than regular brewed tea.

There are four main groups of flavonoids that are present in green tea. In the USDA study, they found that each of these groups was present in a far greater concentration in whole green tea leaves than in brewed tea. Specifically, flavonols are found in a concentration that is four-and-a-half times greater in whole leaves, catechins are found in a concentration that is ninety-four times greater, theaflavins are found in a concentration that is ninety-seven times greater, and thearubigins are found in a concentration that is 121 times greater in whole green tea leaves than in brewed tea!

The leaves may either be eaten plain, consumed separately after being brewed, or incorporated into a variety of different recipes. Since the flavanols present in green tea leaves are believed to have excellent health applications, there is no sense in wasting them when they could be used to their fullest potential.

Since the discovery that whole tea leaves contain the highest levels of nutrients, gourmands the world over have set to work on creating recipes that incorporate whole green tea leaves in order to take advantage of the full potential of the wonderful Camellia sinensis plant from which green tea leaves are harvested.

Green Tea

Green Tea

We invite you to re-post this recipe on your own web site with the following hyper-linked attribution
“Republished with permission from EatGreenTea.com, the original edible green tea.”

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/0140-6736(93)92876-U
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2572165/
http://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp/Data/Other/IFT2003_TeaFlav.pdf

About Anthony Codispoti
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