Green Tea Nutrition and Calories
Better Than a Vitamin Supplement?

Learn about the secrets of green tea nutrition. Be surprised at how many vitamins and minerals it contains.



Do you know why green tea is often referred to as the elixir of life?

In addition to the incredible health benefits provided by EGCG and other green tea antioxidants, you will be surprised to learn that it is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals.

Let's take a closer look, shall we?

Green Tea Nutrition #1:
Vitamins

Vitamins are essential nutrients that your body needs to survive but cannot produce on its own. Vitamin deficiencies can cause a variety of disorders, so it is important to make sure you get enough.

Green tea is known for having more vitamins in higher concentrations than other foods.

Many types of oolong and black tea contain few vitamins, with Vitamin C and other vitamins mostly lost during the production process.

Vitamin C

Also known as ascorbic acid, Vitamin C is an antioxidant that assists in the formation of collagen, helping the body build, repair and maintain blood vessels, scar tissue and cartilage.

Have you ever wondered why pirates always call each other "scurvy"?

Scurvy is actually a disease caused by severe vitamin C deficiency. It was common among old-time sailors on long sea voyages.

Green tea would have helped!

Green tea can contain 1.5 times more Vitamin C than red peppers, which have one of the highest concentration among vegetables.

Not bad at all!

Vitamin B2

Also known as riboflavin, Vitamin B2 is important for metabolizing energy and for the formation of red blood cells.

100 grams of sencha green tea contains 1.4 milligrams of Vitamin B2, more than 4 times that of parsley, spinach and Jew's marrow, which have some of the highest concentrations among foods.

Vitamin B3

Also called niacin, vitamin B3 is necessary for turning food into energy, and helps improve cholesterol levels.

Folic Acid

Folic acid is an important component for prenatal vitamins, and helps prevent birth defects.

In adults, folic acid is crucial for developing red blood cells. Deficiency can cause anemia.

However, if you are pregnant, please discuss drinking green tea with your doctor as there are known side effects.

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Green tea contains more than 5 times the folic acid of spinach or parsley, and around the same amount as dried seaweed, which has one of the highest concentrations of any food.

Beta Carotene

My grandmother always used to say, "Eat your carrots, they will help you see better at night".

As it turns out, beta carotene, the nutrient that makes carrots orange, is a potent antioxidant that actually does help you see in the dark.

Beta carotene is found in particularly high quantities in matcha, which contains 5 times more than carrots!

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is an important antioxidant that works to protect your cells, especially fat cells, from free radicals.

Sencha contains around 32 times the Vitamin E found in spinach and around 2 times that found in chili peppers.

Hardly any foods have it in higher concentration.

Although it is present in all green tea, it does not dissolve in water, so matcha powder is the only type of tea that provides Vitamin E you can actually use.

Green Tea Nutrition #2:
Minerals

Trace minerals are only needed in small amounts, but that does not mean you should overlook them. They are vital for many different bodily functions.

Tea contains around 5-7% minerals, mainly potassium, calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium, as well as small quantities of manganese, zinc and copper.

Manganese

This mineral is important for metabolism, healthy joints, and maintaining normal blood sugar.

Green tea is one of the best sources of manganese around!

Potassium

Important for maintaining a regular heartbeat.

Fluoride

Promotes a healthy smile by preventing cavities.

Magnesium

This mineral is necessary for life and is found in every cell in your body.

Calcium

Calcium helps build strong bones.

Green Tea Nutrition #3:
Other Nutritions

Saponins

Saponins are found in all teas, and result in the frothing seen in teas like matcha. Tea leaves contain around 0.1% saponins, which give it its strong bitterness and astringency.

There currently is a lot of dubious promotion of saponins as a dietary supplement.

These substances are found in traditional medicine preparations. They have anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, and anti-allergy properties and have been shown to lower blood pressure and prevent obesity and increase immunity.

GABA

GABA is also known as Gamma-aminobutyric acid. It is an amino acid produced by the human body.

Its main function is to block the firing of neurons in the brain. When you are feeling stressed, it tells the brain and other body parts to slow down. This means it is a natural relaxant.

It has been used clinically for depressed sex drive, prostate problems, and as a non-addictive tranquilizer substitute.

Tea is a natural source of GABA, but special production techniques can increase the levels of natural GABA.

The Japanese discovered that if tea is fermented in a nitrogen-rich atmosphere the levels of GABA increase 5 to 10 times.

As far as I am aware, GABA tea is currently produced in Japan and Taiwan.

Green Tea Nutrition #4:
How Many Calories?

Green tea contains almost zero calories.

In fact, some will even argue green tea contains negative calories, because it contains antioxidants and caffeine that will help you increase metabolism, burn fat and lose weight.

Green Tea Nutrition #5:
Which Type of Tea?

While oolong tea and black tea have higher levels of aromatic oils, they have less nutrients than green tea.

Vitamins and minerals are very fragile, and in black tea most of them are lost as the tea is processed.

Among of the different types of tea, green tea is the best source of vitamins and minerals.

Green Tea Nutrition #6:
Number of Infusions

When you brew high-quality tea, you will maximize the nutrition if you infuse multiple times.

The first steeping extracts 13-15% of the nutrients in tea.

The second steeping extracts another 9%-12% , the third extracts 6-8%, and so on.

Of course, you will want to stop resteeping when the tea runs out of flavor.

Green Tea Nutrition #7:
Can You Drink Your Vitamins?

Green tea offers two advantages over vitamin supplements.

First, nutrients from whole foods are easier to absorb into your body than nutrients from pills.

Second, green tea contains much more than just vitamins. It also has lots of antioxidants like EGCG.

Of course, if you are taking supplements because your doctor prescribes them , you should continue doing so.

So, go ahead, pour yourself a delicious cup of a tea, and drink your vitamins!

References

Ito-en website. "All About Green Tea." http://www.itoen.co.jp/eng/index.html.

GABA Tea. http://www.allgabatea.com.

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