You may have heard that green tea lowers blood sugar levels, but that’s not exactly what the researchers have said. Several research groups have concluded that the catechins, a kind of plant antioxidant, found in green tea may be useful in treating type II diabetes, but not because of its effect on blood sugar levels. It has other unique effects. Let's see what this means.
Green Tea Study
In one study, participants were given 582.8 mg of green tea catechins per day for twelve weeks. The participants lost inches of their waste and the ability of the pancreas to secrete insulin was produced. These were participants that did not yet require insulin therapy. So, the researchers suggested that a catechin-rich beverage could have benefit for preventing obesity and improving pancreatic function in people with type II diabetes.
Diabetes Type II
Most people with type II diabetes are said to be suffering from metabolic syndrome. The symptoms of which are higher than normal blood sugar levels, obesity and a slow resting metabolic rate. These symptoms are usually accompanied by unhealthy cholesterol levels. In another study, researchers concluded that tea catechins reduce serum cholesterol and triglyceride levels, while preventing dietary fat from being deposited in the stomach or abdomen. These finding suggest that the catechins could help prevent the metabolic syndrome.
There have been many animal and observational studies over the years, but one more bears mention. Although the trial was small and consisted of healthy men, researchers found that insulin sensitivity and fat oxidation increased significantly after the men received 366 mg of green tea catechins over a 24 hour period. The results were measured after exercising. Other studies have shown that the catechins promote fat oxidation when the body is at rest.
Green Tea Supplement
There is a health concern for drinking large amounts of green tea, because the beverages are caffeinated. It is a better choice than coffee, because the caffeine-content is lower. To get the benefits, without the caffeine, a supplement is a good choice. For healthy adults, experts recommend 100 mg per day, which would provide 80 mg of catechins.
In those with diabetes, the recommended dosage is 500 mg per day, which is equivalent to 400 mg of catechins, but one should keep a close watch on their blood sugar and should let their doctors know about any supplements that they are taking. In some cases, medications need to be adjusted. There is a good specialty supplement for diabetes that also contains bitter melon, which has been used and is still being used in some developing countries to lower blood sugar levels.
For healthy adults who simply want to avoid type II diabetes and other chronic diseases, the best choice is a multi-nutrient supplement containing a variety of plant extracts and other antioxidants, as well as the standard vitamins and minerals. Green tea extract may help reduce your risk of heart disease and cancer, as do other antioxidants that we don’t ordinarily get from the foods that we eat.