Thursday, August 12, 2010

Food 108: The Magic of Green Tea

According to Google, Cable TV, and every health nut out there, antioxidants are the new "it" things. More specifically, green tea has taken the stage as the everyday alternative to unhealthy sodas and juices loaded with sugar. Most of the time these health fads are pushed by large companies just trying to make some money out of our hypochondriac society, but green tea honestly does have some good qualities.First of course the obvious fact that it contains a very powerful antioxidant called epigallocatechin-gallate (EGCG) which to put things into perspective, is stronger than Vitamin E and C. Recent studies have shown that EGCG can slow the growth of cancer cells!

Green tea is also known to boost your metabolism and help you loose weight, as well as calm you down after a stressful day. And believe it or not green tea can help protect your teeth!

While green tea is great to drink it's wise to watch where you're getting your tea, and what all you put in it. Some companies load their teas with so much sugar that it's almost as bad as drinking lots of soda.

If you drink pre-sweetend bottled tea take a good look at the nutrition label on the back. The calorie count can range anywhere between 80 - 160 calories per serving. It's best to brew tea at home that way you won't have to deal with preservatives and excess sugar. Sweetening your tea with regular granulated sugar is ok, but be cautious of how much sugar you add to it. Personally I find it to be tastier if I add a spoonful of honey and a bit of lemon to my tea.

Also if you brew it at home you can save you're tea bags or left over tea to make facial masks or exfoliants. It's a very cheap and eco-friendly way for you to have smooth and healthy skin. Here are some super simple recipes that I usually use when making masks and exfoliants:

For the mask you will need:

Leftover tea bags
Any leftover tea liquid
Powdered milk, or Oat meal

All you have to do is open the tea bags and mix them with either the powdered milk, or oat meal that you turn into a powder using a food processor. To get your desired consistency you can add any leftover tea or even some warm water to the mix and just apply it like you would any other facial mask. It'll make your skin feel reaaaallly smooth and soft.

For the exfoliant you will need:

Leftover tea liquid
Around 3 or 4 tbs of sugar

The beauty of this is just mixing the two together. It really doesn't matter what type of sugar you use, and you can add even more sugar depending on what type of texture you want. It's best to use lukewarm tea so it won't melt the sugar, and you can even mix the leaves from the bag in, but I prefer just using sugar and the liquid. After you make your mix gently massage it into your skin in order to get rid of any dead skin cells and clear your pores. After that you can just rinse all the exfoliant off.

Anyways, I hope you guys will keep enjoying the awesomeness that is green tea, and if you haven't tried it yet, I hope you do!


  1. My dad is obsessed with green tea... he drinks it 24/7 and always tries to get me to have some, but I just don't really like it for some reason :/ I'm more of a raspberry iced tea kind of drinker I suppose. I wish though, since it is so good for you and all!

  2. from personal experience, i've found that drinking green tea can delay hunger as well. weeeird.