You held my hand when I was sad and stood by me when I was happy. You perked my moods on cold mornings and sat with me through my long hours of hard work. Never has a day gone by when you did not greet me good morning, nor a single moment when you did not bring a punch to my day. But now I am breaking up with you. It will be hard and I will miss you. But yet, I am leaving you for Green Tea.
Well,I had to start somewhere. I need to work on my resolution and as a result it is bye to my darling coffee. Today my post will be on a simple basic know how. Lets talk Green Tea..!!
The Chinese were the first to discover this wonderful herb back 4000 years ago; it was used to cure everything from controlling bleeding and helping heal wounds to regulating body temperature, blood sugar and promoting digestion. But how helpful is green tea in weight loss. A study in the International Journal of Obesity concluded that green tea extract increases the burning of calories and fat needed to lose weight. The authors showed that consumption of green tea increased thermogenesis as well as energy expenditure and fat loss ( fat metabolism), meaning it increases the body’s capacity to burn the fat faster. Among the green tea nutrients EGCG is believed to be the most important factor for green tea weight loss. Epigallocatechine (EGCG) works well by boosting the body’s metabolism and lowering the appetite. Moreover it maintains LDL cholesterol levels, bood pressure and sugar levels in the body so after people reach their desired weight it helps them to keep it, therby reducing the chances of any cardiovascular disease. However this does not mean that you would lose a bundle of fat by just drinking green tea alone. Weight loss is a combination of various factors. Green tea is just an aiding mechanism, not the main reason for weight loss.
The first time I had green tea was at a Chinese restaurant off Koromangala road, Bangalore 10 years ago. I had eaten a full meal, and their elegant menu card had a small selection of drinks. I was curious.. green tea.. Hmm.. I ordered a pot and waited till the kind waiter placed before me an exquisite porcelain teapot which I imagined was filled with all the wonderful tastes of the world. Well, curiosity killed the cat..!! I hated it then and I hated it ever since.
But now, many moons have passed and the lady is wiser and many pounds heavier than before. Green Tea has attained a cult status amongst all serious health freaks. The benefits of including green tea in my diet made me go back and try it again. Green Tea when brewed for long, or left in the open for a considerable amount of time makes it develop a bitter, grassy and yucky taste. Hence care be taken that green tea (loose form) be stored in an airtight container. Below is given a simple method for brewing green tea. Hope it helps.
MAKING GREEN TEA
- 1 Green Tea teabag / 5 gm Loose tea leaves
- 1 cup Hot water
- Sugar to taste (optional)
- Lemon slices, Mint leaves (optional)
- Green tea is best made of hot water and not boiling water. Start by placing your tea bag in a cup. In case you are using loose tea leaves, place the necessary amount of leaves in a strainer and then place the strainer on the cup.
- Bring the water to a boil in a kettle or on the stove top. Once the water comes to a rolling boil, switch off the flame and keep aside 5 minutes.
- Pour the hot water onto the tea bags or the leaves and let it seep for a maximum of 3 minutes and not more. If you seep it longer, it will start tasting bitter and grassy.
- Remove the tea leaves or tea bag and serve .
- You can flavor it with a slice of lemon or a sprig of mint leaves. Now a days flavored green tea is readily available. However I feel that it tastes artificial. Hence I prefer to flavor it to my taste with fresh ingredients.
- I do not add sugar to my tea. However for those who need sweetened tea, add sugar to taste. My advice is to do without the sugar to get the real flavor of the tea.