Green tea may help support cognition, maintenance of moderate weight, and offer some protection against cancer.
Green tea is touted to be one of the healthiest beverages on the planet that could have many potential health benefits.
1. Contains plant-based antioxidant compounds :
Green tea contains a type of polyphenol called a catechin. Catechins are antioxidants that help prevent cell damage and provideTrusted Source other health benefits.
The most well-known and abundant catechin in green tea is epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), which researchTrusted Source has found may be involved in improving various health conditions or markers of disease.
2. May improve cognitive function :
A 2017 research paperTrusted Source found that drinking green tea may benefit cognition, mood, and brain function, possibly due to compounds in green tea like caffeine and L-theanine.
A 2020 study also suggested that green tea is linked with a 64%Trusted Source lower chance of cognitive impairment in middle-aged and older adults. More human studies are needed to further explore this effect.
3. Could help with fat burning :
A 2022 review found that the ability of green tea to positively influence your metabolism is enhanced with aerobic or resistance exercise.
That said, the National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary SupplementsTrusted Source suggests that while some studies do show an ability for green tea to improve how your body breaks down fat, its overall effect on weight loss is likely to be small.
4. Might lower the risk of some cancers :
While the evidence is mixed and inconsistent, researchTrusted Source has linked drinking green tea with a reduced chance of developing some types of cancer, such as lung cancer or ovarian cancer.
A 2020 reviewTrusted Source found that while experimental research shows a modest beneficial effect, scientists could not conclude any consistent effects of green tea on overall cancer likelihood. Additional high quality research is needed.
5. May protect the brain from aging :
A 2020 studyTrusted Source showed that green tea was linked with lower levels of certain markers related to Alzheimer’s disease in people without current, known cognitive issues. Compounds such as EGCG and L-theanine may be responsible.
However, a 2023 study reported that drinking too much, 13 cups or more per day (all types of tea), could increase the chance of Alzheimer’s disease. Clinical evidence on how exactly green tea affects the human brain is lacking.
6. Could help with oral health :
A 2021 reviewTrusted Source of studies has found that drinking green tea, or using green tea extract, could be linked to better oral health.
However, most of the research on this subject did not examine human subjects. While results are promising, more clinical research in humans is needed.
7. May help with the managing blood sugar :
A 2020 reviewTrusted Source found that green tea may help reduce blood sugar while fasting in the short term but does not seem to have an effect on blood sugar or insulin in the long term.
A 2021 study on Chinese adults also suggested a 10% lower chanceTrusted Source of death from type 2 diabetes for those who drink it daily.
Other reviews found no effects on any markers of blood sugar management in people with type 2 diabetes, so the findings are inconclusive. Read more about green tea and diabetes.
8. Might help prevent heart disease :
A recent review of studies suggests that regularly drinking green tea could lower many risk factors of heart disease, such as blood pressure or lipids.
That said, there is still a lack of consistent, long-term evidence in human clinical trials able to show cause and effect.
9. May help you lose weight :
Several studies show that green tea may help with weight loss.
A 2022 study found drinking four or more cups of green tea daily was linked with a 44%Trusted Source lower chance of abdominal obesity, but the effect was only significant for women.
But, green tea does not seem to make any changesTrusted Source to your levels of hunger and fullness hormones, which help regulate your appetite. There’s also mixedTrusted Source evidence on weight loss with green tea in general.
10. Might help you live longer :
Green tea may have protective compounds against cancer and heart disease, which may help you live longer. ResearchTrusted Source from Japan found that those who drank five cups or more per day had a lower chance of death from all causes than those drinking one cup or less.
A 2021 study found that drinking seven cups of green tea daily decreased the risk of death from all causes by 62%Trusted Source, even among people who have had heart attacks.
Frequently asked questions :
What happens if I drink green tea every day?
Generally speaking, most people can enjoy green tea daily as part of an otherwise balanced eating plan. While the evidence is mixed, studies seem to show health benefits with three to five cups consumed daily.
What are the side effects of green tea?
The active ingredients in green tea are caffeine and catechins. For some people, caffeine can cause headaches and stomach problems or even influence their sleep. Catechins can reduceTrusted Source iron absorption from foods and supplements.
What is the best time to drink green tea?
There is no “best” or “worst” time to drink green tea for most people. It mostly comes down to personal preference. But, if you are a person who is sensitive to caffeine, you might consider drinking your green tea earlier in the day to avoid potential interruptions with sleep.