Effects associated with caffeine
A cup of green tea contains between 15 and 50 mg of caffeine. Certain cognitive benefits are associated with caffeine consumption, such as a reduction in the likelihood of Parkinson’s disease and a temporary increase in short term memory. Further, caffeine consumption has been linked with greater athletic performance, healthy weight loss, reduction in duration and severity of headaches and is effective in treating the symptoms of asthma.
Effects on obstructive sleep apnoea-related brain deficits
University of Louisville researchers report that green tea phenolics may stave off the cognitive deficits that occur with obstructive sleep apnea, in the second issue for May, 2008 of the American Thoracic Society’s American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine. Researchers examined the effects of green tea phenolics administered through drinking water, on rats that were intermittently deprived of oxygen during 12-hour “night” cycles, mimicking the intermittent hypoxia that humans with OSA experience.
Effects on bacterial and fungal infections
A study at Pace University reported in American Society For Microbiology found white tea extracts effective at treating bacterial infections, such as Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, pneumonia and dental caries. White tea was also found to be effective in treating fungal infections from Penicillium chrysogenum and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Researchers also reported that white tea extracts showed a greater effect than green tea extracts.
Antivenin activity of melanin extracted from black tea (MEBT) was reported for the first time in 2004. Low toxicity of MEBT in combination with its antagonistic activity against different venoms may allow effective life-saving treatment against snakebites. Such application of MEBT is important when identification of the snake is impossible or if specific treatment is unavailable.
Research conducted at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and presented at the International Stroke Conference in February 2009 found that drinking three or more cups of either green or black tea per day can reduce the risk of suffering a stroke by as much as 21%.
Research published in April 2009 by the University of L’Aquila and funded by the Unilever-owned Lipton Institute of Tea suggests that drinking just one cup of regular, black tea per day may help to protect against cardiovascular disease. The research showed that black tea consumption does—depending on dose—improve blood vessel reactivity, reduce both blood pressure and arterial stiffness, indicating a notably better cardiovascular health profile.
Sinecatechin, an extract from green tea, was shown to be effective in treating anogenital warts in a double-blinded, randomized controlled trial of greater than 500 subjects. The subjects applied a topical ointment containing either sinecatechin or placebo to the affected area for up to 4 months, and were followed for 3 months after treatment.
More than half of the subjects in the treatment group (57%) experienced a complete resolution of their warts, compared with a third (34%) in the control group. 78% of the patients in the treatment group experienced at least 50% improvement in their warts. The number needed to treat was 4-5 patients. The green tea extract treatment was well-tolerated, with relatively few side-effects.
In a Japanese study, green tea consumption was inversely associated with psychological distress even after adjustment for possible confounding factors.
A more frequent consumption of green tea was associated with a lower prevalence of depressive symptoms in another Japanese study. Researchers conducted a cross-sectional study in 1,058 community-dwelling elderly Japanese individuals 70 years of age. The prevalence of mild and severe depressive symptoms was 34.1 percent and 20.2 percent, respectively. After adjustment for confounding factors, the odds ratios for mild and severe depressive symptoms when higher green tea consumption was compared with green tea consumption of 1 cup/d were: 2 to 3 cups green tea/d and 4 cups green tea/d. Similar relations were also observed in the case of severe depressive symptoms.
One study shows that green tea reduced the severity of rheumatoid arthritis in rats; however another study shows that tea increases the risk for rheumatoid arthritis by 78% for heavy drinkers and by 40% for occasional drinkers.
Weight loss and cholesterol
Green tea and its extract have been shown to fight obesity and lower LDL “bad” cholesterol — two risk factors for heart disease and diabetes. One study in the Netherlands and a study in Japan showed that green tea did both. In the Dutch study, participants who drank caffeinated green tea lost more weight, but even those who typically drank the decaf variety saw a decrease in their waistlines and body weight. Researchers speculated that the caffeine helps with fat oxidation. In the Japanese study, 240 men and women were given varying amounts of green tea extract for three months. Those who got the highest amount lost fat and weight and had lower blood pressure and lower LDL “bad” cholesterol.
References available from source website.