10 Benefits of Drinking Green Tea For Your Skin & Health
Green tea is one of the few ingredients in the world that has the ability to span industries due to its abundance of benefits. Whether it’s the beauty industry or the health and wellness industry – green tea is there to bring unique benefits to the table that are hard to find anywhere else. While there are plenty of green tea skincare products out on the market today that prove just how beloved green tea is for skin-related benefits, there are just as many benefits of drinking green tea for your overall health.
- Green tea is packed with antioxidants, anti-inflammatory properties, anti-microbial properties, vitamin B, vitamin E, caffeine, L-theanine, and tannins, which all work together for maximum health and skincare benefits.
- Some benefits of drinking green tea include improving brain function, protecting the skin from free radical damage, reducing inflammation, and promoting collagen production.
- When mixed with ingredients like lemon, honey, and matcha, the benefits of green tea increase to provide extra benefits and strengthen the benefits it already has, including boosting metabolism and immunity, improving gut and heart health, and improving skin appearance.
Green Tea Basics
Green tea is absolutely no stranger to the health and wellness world. Spanning across centuries, green tea has been used as a powerful antioxidant in countries like China due to its benefits on both internal and external health (1). But, what makes green tea so great?
The active components of green tea are polyphenols, otherwise known as catechins. These components have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that make green tea ideal for treating certain skin concerns. Other than catechins, green tea contains caffeine and tannins, which are two other beloved ingredients for topical skin care products. Tannins, for example, are naturally astringent compounds that act as a form of toner to even out the skin’s tone and texture. Other ingredients in green tea include:
- Epigallocatechin-3-gallate, or EGCG for short: The main polyphenolic compound in green tea that has also shown to have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties (2).
- Vitamin B
- Vitamin E
The Benefits of Drinking Green Tea
Now that you know some of the main ingredients inside of green tea that make it so beneficial for the skin, it’s time to dive deep into the specific benefits of drinking green tea that can help you address and alleviate countless skin and overall health concerns.
1. Improving brain function
Green tea contains enough caffeine to stimulate the brain without producing negative effects caused by drinking too much coffee or soda, such as jitters. While research has shown caffeine can improve various aspects of brain function including reaction time and memory, green tea has an added bonus since it contains L-theanine.
L-theanine can increase dopamine while maintaining anti-anxiety benefits. Together, caffeine and L-theanine work together to positively affect brain function in areas such as mood, stress, and energy to keep you feeling refreshed (3).
2. Keeping the heart healthy
Green tea is high in flavonoids that can boost heart health by lowering cholesterol, reducing blood clotting, and lowering blood pressure (4).
3. Anti-aging properties
Plant extracts have been used for centuries to help prevent signs of aging, and green tea is no different. Due to the catechins in green tea, the drink is packed with antioxidants that help prevent premature signs of aging and delay signs of wrinkles, dull and sagging skin, or age spots (5,6).
4. Protecting skin from free radical damage
Green tea has incredible antioxidant properties that help neutralize free radical damage. Free radicals can come from anywhere, including excess sun exposure, alcohol, smoke, dust, and other toxins in the air.
5. Brightening the skin/dark spots
While green tea can reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation, it also can help by brightening and evening skin tone. With caffeine as the main ingredient, getting a golden hour glow any time of day is one of the most popular and beloved benefits of drinking green tea.
6. Acting as a natural astringent
Due to the tannins, green tea can act as a natural astringent to shrink blood vessels, reduce the appearance of pores, and decrease puffiness.
7. Reducing signs of sun damage
Some of the benefits of drinking green tea include reducing the appearance of hyperpigmentation, rough textured skin, and fine lines.
8. Reducing inflammation
By reducing inflammation, the benefits of drinking tea include reducing redness, swelling, infection, and injury.
9. Reducing excess sebum production
Helping slow or stop sebum production on the skin can help prevent clogged pores and acne breakouts. While most products remove excess sebum on the skin’s surface, drinking green tea and using green tea products can target oil production directly in the skin cells.
10. Promoting collagen production
Since green tea is packed with vitamin B and vitamin E, it can promote collagen production to firm the skin, maintain elasticity, promote cell regeneration, and hydrate the skin (7).
Mixing Green Tea with Other Ingredients for Maximum Benefits
One of the cool things about green tea is that it’s completely safe to consume and use in your skincare ritual daily. In fact, it’s said to be optimal to drink three to five cups of green tea per day to reap the most health benefits (8).
Sure, the benefits of drinking green tea seem plentiful – and let’s face it, almost too good to be true. But it can get even better. When combined with other antioxidant-packed ingredients, green tea is even more beneficial.
Matcha is often referred to as the antioxidant powerhouse and, according to recent research, is packed with way more antioxidants than any other superfood out there. Including green tea. In fact, research has shown that one cup of matcha tea contains antioxidants enough for 10 cups of brewed green tea (9).
Besides antioxidants, matcha and green tea together provide the body with fiber, vitamin C, selenium, zinc, magnesium, and improved gut health.
Green tea and honey go together like peanut butter and jelly. Honey is a natural sweetener that, like green tea, has been used for centuries for its incredible antioxidant and antibacterial properties. When mixed with green tea, the benefits are bountiful. Green tea with honey has benefits for the heart, managing cholesterol, improving brain function, easing the common cold, aiding in hair growth, and improving skin appearance.
Lemons and green tea have a lot in common. Both are a great source of antioxidants, able to boost metabolism, and are ideal for increasing immunity, increasing energy, and keeping you hydrated – just to name a few similarities (10).
Written by Selena Ponton