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By Brandi Koskie for DietsInReview.com
You finally caught the bug and you’re making some healthier choices for yourself. Maybe you’re tired of your pants being too tight, or maybe tired of being winded playing with your kids. Whatever the reason, you’ve started making some changes. To be healthier, your go-to beverage is a little healthier, or so you think.
So many women grab a bottle of Diet Coke or Snapple because of the health halo attached to them. The what? The health halo, as Kati Mora, RD describes at DietsInReview.com, “is actually a clever way to identify foods that claim to be more than what they really are.”
Food manufacturers slap the words “diet” or “low-fat”, or even a picture of fresh fruit, on the front of a package and no one thinks twice about eating it because it appears healthy. It has a health halo.
That’s the case with Diet Coke and Snapple Tea. They appear to be a healthy choice. Heck, the marketing says so, the packaging is believable. While the right answer is that neither of them is great for you, in this food fight, something has to win.
Which product will “win” this fight? (We promise not to just tell you “Water wins!” Keep reading to find out.) Read more
If you drink tea because you enjoy the taste, great. But with all the news, studies–and, sometimes lack of research–we wanted to break down the truth about green tea.
1. While green tea is rich in antioxidants, studies have shown that the bottled varieties of tea don’t even come close to the antioxidant levels you’ll find in home-brewed green tea. Researchers found as few as 3 milligrams of flavonoids in premade (bottled) teas, compared with up to 150 milligrams in the kind that is brewed at home. To get the most of your tea, steep it at home for 6-10 minutes, then enjoy it either hot or iced. (This will save you money, too!)
2. It should be noted that green tea extracts and green tea supplements have not been as widely studied as the fresh-brewed beverage itself has been. Most research on the health benefits of tea applies to tea drinking alone. Whether any of these benefits can be achieved by taking a pill or extract, drinking an energy drink with EGCG added, or eating a packaged food product that contains extracts of green tea is questionable. Many of these products contain so little green tea that they’d offer no benefit at all. Others may contain high levels that can be unhealthy (see warnings below). Your best bet is to stick with a fresh-brewed cup of tea and not spend extra on costly functional foods or supplements.
3. Green tea may decrease the absorption of iron and folic acid. Therefore it is best to be drink tea between meals rather than using it as your mealtime beverage. Wait 1-2 hours between eating foods rich in iron and folic acid and drinking tea to maximize your absorption of these nutrients.
4. Research indicates green tea MIGHT be effective for: Improving cholesterol levels, preventing low blood pressure, reducing the risk or preventing the onset of Parkinson’s disease, and preventing cancers of the bladder, esophagus, ovaries and pancreas. However, more research is needed before anyone can say it’s likely to help.
5. Currently, there is not enough evidence or research to say that green tea for sure aids in: Weight loss, Type 2 diabetes prevention, prostate cancer prevention, breast cancer prevention, lung cancer prevention, or gingivitis. Many times, when you read or hear about the potential benefits of something, it’s because a study’s research is news.
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