What is Green Tea?
Green tea is a type of tea made from the leaves of Camellia sinensis. It is not
fermented like black and oolong teas. Instead, it is steamed at high
temperatures, which prevents oxidation by inactivating certain oxidizing
enzymes. As a result, green tea is high in polyphenols, such as flavanols (which
include catechins), flavandiols, flavonoids and phenolic acids. Catechins seem to
be responsible for many of the benefits of green tea.
Where is it found?
Green tea can be found in any grocery store tea section. Both caffeinated and
decaffeinated varieties are available. It is also sold as an oral supplement and
topical extract ointment.
What are the benefits of green tea?
Intake of green tea is used to improve cognitive performance and mental
alertness. It is also used to treat prevent/treat certain cancers, hyperlipidemia,
Parkinson’s disease, and hypotension. It may be effective as an aid in weight
loss, osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease, and hypertension. When used
topically, green tea is used to treat genital warts. Additionally, the bags can be
used to wash and soothe sunburn and as a compress for a headache or tired
Are there interactions with medications and green tea?
Because of the caffeine in green tea, one should be cautious and consult a
doctor when taking amphetamines, cocaine, ephedrine, mexiletine, terbinafine
(lamisil), adenosine, anticoagulant drugs, beta-andrenergic agonists, boronic
acid-based proteaseome inhibititors, bortezomib (velcade), cimetidine (tagamet),
clozapine (clozaril), dipyridamole (persantine), lithium, hepatotoxic drugs,
fluvoxamine (luvox), fluconazole (diflucan), and estrogens.
Green tea appears to reduce the absorption of iron from foods. Also, milk added
to green tea has been shown to enhance some of the cardiovascular benefits of
Are there side effects from green tea?
Some possible (but rare) side effects may be nausea, vomiting, abdominal
bloating and pain, flatulence, diarrhea, dizziness, insomnia, fatigue, and