Does Green Tea Help with Weight Loss?


Various healthy diets, light to vigorous exercise, and even surgery are just some of the ways to lose weight. In many diets, green tea has been included as part of the regimen. Known to be highly beneficial with several health conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, asthma, dental concerns, stress, hypertension, and high cholesterol levels, green tea also is popular as an aid to weight loss. But how does green tea help with weight loss?

Excess fat, little physical activity, and high triglyceride levels are just some of the problems related to weight gain. These are also problems with which green tea is able to assist, thus making it a good support tool in the weight-loss process. As with anything, however, it is important to speak with a health professional to learn of any contraindications to a dietary supplement before a regimen begins.

Healthier diets and exercise play a major role in losing weight. When green tea is part of the regimen, the body is able to endure vigorous exercise for a longer period of time, thus burning more fat and increasing weight loss. One study published in the 2005 issue of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition examined the effect of catechins on fat reduction. The subjects were healthy people with a similar basal metabolic rate, body mass index (BMI), and waist circumference. The results showed that the BMI, waist circumference, and body fat mass were significantly lower in those subjects given green tea extract.

During vigorous exercise the catechins in green tea help to decrease the utilization of carbohydrates. Because of this, the use up of stored carbohydrates (glycogen) necessary for muscle use is decreased, and there is an increase in the use of fatty acids. In addition, there is a prevention of lactic acid buildup, therefore less muscle pain. Catechins allow more body fats to be burned, thus increasing the capacity to lose weight.

Green tea also helps to bring down triglyceride levels. Triglycerides are chains of fatty acids that circulate in our bloodstream and provide energy for tissues in our body. However, an excessive amount of triglyceride becomes a threat to health. A high triglyceride count also leads to high blood pressure and heart disease. Studies have shown that there are compounds in green tea that help to decrease body fats. These compounds are caffeine and theanine, together with catechin. The former two affect an enzyme that is involved in dissolving excessive triglycerides, while the latter affects an enzyme that synthesizes fatty acid into a form that can be transformed to fat cells.

Green tea also increases in the energy output of the body, or the heat production in the body, in a process called thermogenesis. This occurs when the catechin and caffeine in green tea stimulate the body’s central nervous system and the metabolism, raising the core temperature of the body. Fats freed into the bloodstream then may be used as additional fuel or energy. Increased energy burns more calories and releases more stored fats, increasing weight loss.

Green tea has been proven to help with weight loss. It is a very good support tool in a healthy regimen of diet and exercise, and it offers many other health benefits.