Why green tea is an important supplement for athletes
Unfortunately, a lot of Americans run on caffeine: A survey by the National Coffee Association found that at least six out of 10 adults over the age of 18 had a cup of coffee the day before they were asked in 2018. However, it’s worth noting that green tea has also shown major growth in recent years, according to the survey. An earlier study ranked the U.S. 13th in global tea consumption, with a person drinking just under half a pound in a year.
It’s now time to look at the benefits of tea when it comes to sports. Athletes looking to boost their performance, in particular, could benefit from the stimulating effect of green tea.
Tea and caffeine
A cup of green tea has between 40-120 mg of caffeine, which is less than coffee’s 95-200 mg. This makes green tea a healthier choice. Experts recommend consuming as little caffeine a day as possible, since drinking or eating too much of it can lead to side effects, including:
• Feeling restless;
• Difficulty sleeping;
• Abnormal heart rhythm;
When consumed in small amounts in the form of green tea, it can greatly improve athletic performance. In a study by Victoria University in Australia, it was found that consuming green tea can positively affect single-sprint performance. It can also reduce fatigue while boosting adrenaline release – explaining its performance-enhancing effects.
Green tea and athletic performance
Green tea is well-known for its fat-burning properties. A study by researchers in New Zealand found that cyclists who drink green tea before a race exhibited a possible relationship between green tea and athletic performance. An earlier study in Japan also found that green tea extract can improve endurance. Using a mouse model, the researchers found that green tea can help with the ability of muscle cells to convert fat into energy.
In a review published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, researchers concluded that green tea can positively impact sport-specific endurance. More precisely, they noted that in moderate quantities, green tea can be effective for boosting endurance.
Red blood cells and the benefits of tea
When athletes compete, the blood – particularly red blood cells – performs a crucial function in providing oxygen to ensure energy is produced. In a study led by Jagiellonian University in Poland, the research team found that drinking green tea has a protective effect on red blood cells and cell membranes. This effect might explain why drinking green tea can help with physical activity through its stimulation and cell-protective functions.
Drink green tea before working out to go longer
It’s not just athletes who benefit from green tea. Researchers from Pennsylvania State University revealed that green tea, when combined with exercise, can boost fat burning, making it a great energy booster for better and longer workouts. Published in the journal Molecular Nutrition Food Research, the team noted that the combination worked better than exercise alone.
According to a review in the American Journal of Physiology, green tea increases thermogenesis (heat production) to improve the oxidation of fat cells, thanks to the catechins present in green tea.
Going for decaffeinated green tea works as well. Researchers from Penn State said that it offers similar benefits, without getting the jitters afterward.
March 6, 2020
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