Green tea is one of our favorite morning and mid-day pick me up drinks. Today, it’s the most widely consumed beverage aside from water. It’s been highly valued and treasured as a precious herbal medicine for health and longevity since it was introduced to Japan in 805 by Buddhist monks. Drinking green tea was popularized for good health in Japan around the 12th century and from that, matcha, grinding green tea into powder, was developed around the 14th century.
What is green tea made of:
Green tea has a complex chemical made up. Let’s break it down by it’s composition in % of dry weight.
- Polyphenol (flavanols, flavandiols, flavonoids, and phenolic acids) account for up to 30% of the dry weight.
- Fiber accounts for 26% of dry weight.
- Proteins account for 15-20% of dry weight.
- Amino acids (theanine, glutamic acid, tryptophan, glycine, serine, aspartic acid, tyrosine, valine, leucine, threonine, arginine, and lysine) account for 4% of dry weight.
- Carbohydrates (cellulose, pectins, glucose, fructose, and sucrose) account for 5-7% of dry weight.
- Minerals and trace elements (calcium, magnesium, chromium, manganese, iron, copper, zinc, molybdenum, selenium, sodium, phosphorus, cobalt, strontium, nickel, potassium, fluorine, and aluminum) account for 5% of dry weight.
- Lipids (linoleic and α-linolenic acids), sterols (stigmasterol), vitamins (B, C, E), xanthic bases (caffeine, theophylline), pigments (chlorophyll, carotenoids), and volatile compounds (aldehydes, alcohols, esters, lactones, hydrocarbons) account for 7% of dry weight.
What are the health benefits of Green tea:
There has been numerous peer review studies done on the benefits of green tea for health purposes. Green tea consumption has been linked to the prevention of many types of cancer, including lung, colon, esophagus, stomach, and pancreas, protection against degenerative diseases, antifungal activities, and many more. It’s also been known to improve brain function, help with weight loss, and lowers the risk of heart disease. In addition to health benefits, green tea also serves many skin benefits as well.
What are the skin benefits of green tea:
Our skin is frequently exposed to environmental factors such as UV rays, pollution, and chemicals that contribute to skin damage. Without proper protection and treatment and with continuous exposure over time to these external stressors, it can lead to early signs of aging, hyperpigmentations, and skin cancer. So where does green tea come in? Green tea provides both protection and correction to the skin.
Green tea is an abundant source of polyphenols, which include flavanols, flavandiols, flavonoids, catechins, and phenolic acids. Polyphenols are super beneficial to the skin because it has properties that include UV protection, antioxidants, anti-inflammation, and anticarcinogenic.
You probably have heard of green tea as being an effective antioxidant and it really is. Catechins are natural antioxidants that help prevent cell damages, reduce formation of free radicals, and can enhance penetration of skin benefiting ingredients. The best studied catechin is epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) and works synergistically with other antioxidants like Vitamin C and E. In addition, green tea also contains vitamin C, B2, and E (helps maintain healthy skin, mucous membrane, and collagen) and caffeine (decrease puffiness by shrinking blood vessels).
Here's a few reason why we love green tea in our skincare routine:
How to add green tea to your skincare routine:
There's no right or wrong way to add green tea infused products into your routine. If you're looking to add green tea products in your skincare routine, here's a few suggestions: