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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Tea and Coffee, please

More and more information is coming out about the health benefits of tea...and now, coffee. Both have been shown to help prevent cardiovascular disease as well as other diseases. I wanted to understand more about how such daily drinks can help us.

Green and Black Teas contain polyphenols which are powerful antioxidants. As Drs. Flanigan and Sawyer point out in their book, Longevity Made Simple, antioxidants neutralize damaging effects of free radicals in our bodies. Free radicals damage our cells which can lead to cancer and cardiovascular disease.

Herbal Teas do not have the same benefits. The best is Green Tea because it has been processed the least and therefore has the highest amount of antioxidants. Black Tea is still beneficial, it just contains about 10% less of antioxidants.

Coffee also has high levels of antioxidants. In one study of postmenopausal women it was shown to reduce inflammation which then reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases and other inflammatory diseases. Additionally, coffee has been shown to lower the risk of diabetes in both men and women.

So, as it turns out, we receive health benefits from drinking tea and coffee. Drs. Flanigan and Sawyer recommend two cups of Green or Black Tea each day. And for coffee, they recommend no more than four 8 ounce cups per day. I can live with that!

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