Yesterday I was interviewed by a journalist from a popular woman's magazine. They are doing a story on green tea and somehow found a paper I recently published (in a biochemistry journal, no less) on green tea and weight loss. The journalist was very nice on the phone and asked me a lot of good questions, but I'm pretty confident that this will be the headline in her magazine:
Drinking green tea helps shed extra pounds, especially around the middle.
In reality, here's what the research says:
1. Drinking the equivalent of 6-12 cups of green tea a day may lead to weight loss over several months, especially if you are:
- Asian and don't drink a lot of caffeine on a regular basis (~3 lb weight loss in Asians vs. about 1.5 lbs in Caucasians).
- An exerciser that consistently works out on a weekly basis (~5 lb weight loss).
2. Green tea may have this effect because of the combination of green tea antioxidants (called catechins) and caffeine naturally present in green tea. They appear to work together to stimulate the nervous system to burn more calories. The combination may also cause the body to burn more energy as fat, which may be why some studies show more fat loss from the belly region.
3. Black tea and other varieties have much less of the catechins, and therefore would likely be less effective.
Doesn't seem like a lot of weight loss, does it? Especially if you have to drink 6 to 12 cups of tea a day. But here's the thing...these numbers are from research studies that are 3 months long and because the studies are so short, the Dr. Dorks give high amounts of green tea to produce an effect. It is entirely possible that just a few cups of a green tea a day has a similar effect over a longer period of time...say a year. And even if it doesn't, green tea is a zero calorie beverage and has been linked to other good stuff, like lower risk for cancer and heart disease.
As such, I think green tea is definitely a "do" for summer....completely on trend with other fashion statements like feathers in the hair and maxi-dresses....hmmmmm....I wonder how it tastes over ice with a little vodka???
Wait, check this out:
I guess someone else thinks it tastes good! Cheers!