The Science Behind Why Japanese Green Tea Can Make You Smarter
There are three major reasons why green tea is the ultimate brainpower booster. Green tea contains some powerful compounds, all of which will prime your brain to naturally operate at a higher level.
The 3 Reasons That Green Tea Makes You Smarter
- Hundreds of antioxidants are in green tea.
EGCG, The Penultimate Antioxidant Within Green Tea
EGCG is the abbreviation of the polyphenol called epigallocatechin-3-gallate, which is significant in green tea. Thanks to this wonderful compound in green tea, humans can benefit from its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-aging properties. Your brain could never benefit more from drinking green tea, which is replete with this bioactive compound. Since EGCG is an antioxidant, it is capable of destroying free radicals, which contribute to aging and disease within your brain.
Since the brain is a region of your body that is rich in oxygen, keeping oxidative damage to a minimum is vital to higher brain functioning. EGCG improves your memory and cognitive focus and puts you in a relaxed yet attentive state. When free radicals attack the brain, they may cause inflammation of the brain’s tissues, which is the onset of disease. EGCG has anti-inflammatory attributes that will stop destructive processes within the brain so that your brain will be healthy and perform optimally.
According to The Lancet Neurology (a monthly journal covering international issues relevant to neurologists worldwide), studies on the effects of green tea on the cognitive brain function of clients with Down syndrome showed significant improvement in patient memory recall and other cognitive functions. The major component responsible for the significant improvement in brain function was EGCG. Considering that EGCG plays a role in the protection of telomeres and chromosomes in the brain because of the nature of Down syndrome, EGCG’s effects are of importance to the study. EGCG works to protect telomeres from damage, preventing unwarranted and premature cell death and damage, which inhibits optimal brain performance.
L-Theanine Increases Performance of Your Brain
L-theanine is a unique compound that improves overall brain performance. When you consume green tea, L-theanine makes you perform better at complex tasks, boosts dopamine and serotonin, and improves your memory. Studies from the University of Shiga Prefecture and Taiyo Kagaku Co. Ltd. also shows that L-thenine also increases a person’s ability to pay attention by enhancing the activity of alpha waves in the brain.
As a protective compound for the various neurocenters of the brain, L-theanine staves off brain cell death, reduces anxiety and stress, and fends off degenerative conditions like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. When you drink green tea, the L-theanine works to protect your brain from harm and alter your brainwaves so that your brain is alert and focused, but not stressed.
A lot of poor brain functioning is due to a lack of proper sleep, poor nutrition, and being overly stressed and anxious. L-theanine in green tea helps regulate the brain so that it gets proper time to recharge upon sleeping. L-theanine also promotes restful sleep and sharply reduces stress or anxiety, creating a relaxed and peaceful state of mind. When your brain is calm yet focused, you are able to tackle more challenges and think more clearly without feeling overwhelmed.
The Incredible Amount of Antioxidants Within Green Tea Make it the Holy Grail of Intelligence Boosters
According to Psychology Today, studies on green tea have shown that the antioxidants within promote cell repair, which improves brain function. There are hundreds of antioxidants in green tea besides EGCG that raise dopamine levels in the brain and protect against neurotoxins. Studies are still being conducted worldwide to classify and conduct closer studies of individual antioxidant attributes. Polyphenols in green tea help regulate glucose levels in the brain, which ensure the proper function of cognitive activities. The tannins in green tea have been shown to assist DNA repair in addition to preventing neuron death, especially in the event of a stroke.
In order to benefit from the antioxidants in green tea, you want to choose a tea of high quality and be mindful of your brewing process. Matcha, a finely ground form of specifically processed green tea called tencha, contains significantly higher levels of certain compounds than other teas. Loose teas, such as those found online, will offer more healthful benefits than tea in a bag. Choose to brew your tea cold, and you will find significantly higher levels of antioxidants. Typically, green tea is brewed in hot water, which will still provide your brain with a healthy boost of power. According to a video posted by Dr. Greger from Nutrition Facts, studies have shown that cold-brewing your green tea will enhance the healthful benefits within. The video explains that Italian scientists compared antioxidant activities in cold vs. hot steeped tea and found that cold tea actually has more antioxidants, concluding that hot temperatures in fact destroy some of the catechins in tea.
Tips for Getting Most Out of Tea for Your Brain
The most important thing to keep in mind when drinking green tea is to select the highest-quality loose tea possible. A higher-quality tea will retain more antioxidants, provide a better taste, and be free of chemical additives or insecticides. Try to drink at least 3 servings of 6 ounces of green tea daily in order to give your brain the benefit of its prized antioxidants. Experiment with drinking your green tea hot or cold to see how your brain reacts differently. Choose to consume green tea that is brewed correctly, without sugar, and of high quality. Your brain will benefit from improved mood, focus, and health and perform at an optimal level.
If possible, you want to avoid consuming green tea with sugar, as sugar spikes blood sugar levels and overwhelms the brain. Green tea naturally contains compounds that will give you a cleaner energy boost. A properly brewed green tea will make you feel alert for a sustained amount of time and more relaxed than if you were powering your brain on a sugar rush. Take the time to enjoy some green tea, cold or hot, and enjoy the many benefits it has for your health, especially your brain.