It's quite possible that around one billion Chinese people are right on track when they partake in the traditional drinking of green tea for their well being.
The Chinese have been drinking green tea for as long as records go back. For possibly around four thousand years as far as we know and maybe even longer.
They've known for millennia that green tea is an important aspect of daily life.
How strange then that it is only recently that the West has cottoned on to the importance of this incredible health giving beverage.
The health benefits gained from regularly drinking green tea are numerous thanks to its high proportion of some of the most powerful antioxidants currently known.
For those of you who have been holidaying on Mars for the last few years, antioxidants are special properties contained in certain foods that mop up substances known as free radicals. Free radicals are known to cause damage to cell structure and can lead to many debilitating illnesses, including cancer.
But it is not only the powerful cancer fighting properties of green tea that make it such an important addition to our daily diet.
Green tea also contains anti-bacterial agents that can help fight against the often dangerous bacteria that cause everything from food poisoning to tooth decay caused by the build-up of dental plaque.
Not so many people know this, but green tea can also be used as an aid to slimming when included in a healthy, low sugar/carbohydrate diet!
It contains caffeine just like coffee and black tea, but although the levels are similar to theses popular beverages, the combination of caffeine and other unique properties work together to boost the body's metabolism and aid digestion.
This causes the food we eat to be more efficiently digested and less fat to be stored in the body as a result. This, of course leads to slow, safe and natural weight loss making green tea an excellent part of a calorie controlled diet.
What's more, green tea has also been found to balance cholesterol levels in the bloodstream. That means reducing levels of LDL (low density lipids), or what is commonly labelled ″bad cholesterol″ and boosting healthy levels of HDL (high density lipids), or ″good cholesterol.″
There is something I need to point out at this stage of the article, which is something that a lot of people are getting wrong. LDL and HDL are not actually cholesterol, but are actually carriers.
LDL delivers cholesterol to the cells that need it (and all cells do) while HDL returns the excess cholesterol to the liver to be broken down into proteins and rebuild into new cholesterol. No cholesterol is ever ″bad″ because the body literally runs on the stuff.
When we hear about arteries becoming narrowed, it is generally caused by excess calcium getting into soft tissue including the blood vessels where it accumulates (this is due to a lack of vitamin K2).
The body's immune system recognises this calcium build-up as damage to the blood vessel and instructs LDL to deposit cholesterol at the site to repair the damage.
Anyway, this can get very involved and needs a lot of explaining, which I don't have space for in this article. Check with your doctor or read a medical journal for a detailed explanation!
The constituents of this tea has the additional benefit of reducing the potential for abnormal blood clots to form.
Blood clots forming in narrowed blood vessels can be the cause of a number of problems from thrombosis to strokes and even heart attacks, so this drink can actually help you to look after your heart!
Finally, as if all the above weren't enough, green tea is also a great stress reducer.
A calming cup of green tea relaxes you after a hard day's work, whether it be physical or mental or a combination of both, helping you to wind down and bring all of your body's functions back to a restful state, helping you to enjoy a more peaceful and relaxed sleep at the end of the day.
So all in all, a daily cup or two of healthy, refreshing green tea could go a long way to ensuring you enjoy good health, longer life and a better quality of life overall.
So cheers! Mine's a cup of green tea!