Green tea is well known for all the wonderful benefits it carries, full of nutrients and antioxidants that can help drinkers lead a life of wellness. One of those benefits is theanine, an amino acid found primarily in teas of the Camellia sinesis family. It’s known to have a positive impact on both the body and mind, from protecting your brain to improving other bodily functions. Below are five top reasons to get more of this important building block in your diet.
- It may reduce stress and anxiety. Studies have shown that it can lead to fewer signs of stress in people who drink it, which includes slower heart rates and decreased blood pressure. This alone makes it a great choice for those seeking to reduce anxiety, but it’s also been shown to promote relaxation in the body. It helps to keep calm without making you sleepy, so you won’t have to worry about “crashing” after a good cup. If what you’d like is a little aid in going to bed for the night, you can also find it here.
- It can help protect your cardiovascular system. Studies on drinking tea regularly have shown that the drink alone can help reduce the risk of several heart-affecting diseases, including heart attack, strokes, and heart disease. Theanine in particular helps by promoting nitric oxide production in the body, which helps blood vessels control pressure. The amino acid also inhibits LDL breakdown, which contributes to diseases like atherosclerosis emerging in your body. Your heart, veins, and arteries can benefit the rest of your systems with a regular cup.
- It’s an antioxidant and may help fight cancer. Depending on how much tea you drink, you’ll get a healthy dose of antioxidants from the amino acid to protect yourself from the problems free radicals cause in your systems. What’s more is that it works well in conjunction with some cancer medications, protecting you from harmful side effects the drugs may cause. Lung cancer especially does not seem to fare well with the amino acid. Green tea has the highest count of radical-fighting contents, so it is likely the better choice against black tea for cancer prevention in healthy adults.
- It supports the immune system, from boosting T cells to weakening allergic reactions to warding off the flu. The amino acid boosts the parts of this system fighting disease and complications, meaning you could be more resistant to sickness over time. It also calms the symptoms you might experience when down with certain bacterial and viral issues, such as inflammations; you may subsequently find your symptoms don’t last as long. The next time you’re feeling a little under the weather, a good cup of tea can help get you on the right track.
- It can ease the symptoms of some mental illnesses. The amino acid has shown promising results in studies regarding ADHD as well as MDD. For the former, it helped male test subjects sleep longer after a controlled amount of doses for six weeks. They also slept better compared to those taking a placebo. This benefit extends to depression, as well, since some MDD sufferers have trouble sleeping. Subjects also reported other positive effects on brain functions, such as less anxiety and better cognitive ability. Since the amino acid has an effect on stress and anxiety, it may be helpful in reducing these symptoms in other mental disorders.
From improving brain and heart heath to protecting every system in your body, this amino acid packs a big punch in promoting health and wellness. It can’t be found in many other foods, so it’s important to get in tea. When you next seek out a great cup, go green and reap the benefits theanine has to offer.