As you probably know, there are tons of creams and ointments that claim to reverse and/or eliminate the aging of skin. Most of them are costly, and their effectiveness is questionable at best. But here’s some good news: a new study from the Mohave Skin and Cancer clinic corroborates past evidence that the use of green tea in skin treatments (sometimes called “cosmeceuticals”) may be a great way to limit the signs of aging skin!
Your Skin’s Best Friends: Antioxidants, Polyphenols and EGCG
While all teas contain a fair amount of antioxidants, researchers consistently agree that green tea has the highest concentrations. The principle benefit of antioxidants is that they remove free radicals and inhibit inflammation. Free radicals are agents in the body that start harmful reactions that damage your cells. The more antioxidants active in the body, the less damage is caused by free radicals.
Between 30% and 35% of the weight of dry green tea leaves are composed of polyphenols – a potent subset of antioxidants composed of complex molecules that are present in most plants. And green tea has the largest concentration of one particular polyphenol, epigallocatechin-3-gallate (or EGCC), which is the most active antioxidant in any tea. The presence of EGCG in green tea has received much fanfare in recent years.
Fighting Your Skin’s Foes: Free Radicals and UV Light
According to the study, the strong combination of green tea’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory factors may help keep your skin looking younger as you age. Skin ages through two major mechanisms: collagen breakdown due to free radicals and harmful UV light exposure. Lab results have shown that the polyphenols in green tea have the ability to decrease collagen breakdown by eliminating the free radicals that are responsible. The end result? Less wrinkles! Researchers also suggest that the anti-inflammatory effect associated with polyphenols can reduce damage caused by UV radiation, such as intense sunlight.
While the full effects of green tea are still being understood, more and more positive research arises each day about this amazing product! So go ahead, grab some green tea skin cream – your skin will thank you. And of course, we’ve got all the green tea you need!
November 05 2010 09:00 am | Tea and Health