Trying to lose weight? Reach for a cup of green tea
instead of a diet beverage.
According to a new study published in the November
issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, green tea appears to accelerate
calorie burning -- including fat calories. Researchers at the University of Geneva, in
Switzerland, came to this conclusion by studying 10 healthy young men who ranged from lean
to mildly overweight. For six weeks, they either took two capsules of green-tea extract
and 50 milligrams of caffeine daily, just 50 mg. of caffeine
or a placebo. All men were placed on a typical "Western" diet that consisted of
40 percent fat.
The men taking the green-tea extract burned more
calories during the day than the other men. There was no difference in calorie expenditure
between the caffeine group and the placebo group. Researchers suggest compounds in green
tea called flavonoids may change how the body uses a hormone called norepinephrine, which
then speeds the rate calories are burned.
Green tea, a staple in Asian diets, has gained popularity
in the West lately. Research has shown compounds in green tea may help to reduce the risk
of heart disease, cancer and even ulcers.
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