DIY After-Sun Antioxidant Spray

After reading about the benefits of applying green tea and antioxidant vitamins to the skin after exposure to UV rays, I decided to devise my own aftersun (or anytime) antioxidant spray. I’ve been using my custom green tea/vitamin c/vitamin e blend for several months now and it works great!  Even though I rarely get burned, every once in a while I overdo it a bit and get pink.  When this happens, I always spray on liberal amounts of my antioxidant solution, and it provides quick recovery from my burn!  Of course, I spray it on whether I get sunburned or not, because I want to give my skin all the nutrition I can.

The reason I chose to use green tea and vitamins e and c in my solution is that they all provide researched benefits. Several studies, looking at both rat and human skin, found that after exposure to the sun or artificial UV rays, topically applied green tea reduces inflammation and can even reduce the incidence of skin cancer.  Green tea contains powerful polyphenols that protect green tea plants from UV damage and provide a number of benefits to humans as well.

Other plants use vitamin C and Vitamin E to protect their cells from UV damage.  One study using a vitamin C and Vitamin E solution found that when applied to the skin daily, it provided progressive protection from sunburn and UV damage.

With all these benefits, it’s surprising that there aren’t many antioxidant sprays out there.  Thankfully, it’s easy to make an antioxidant solution at home.

Here’s what you’ll need: an 8 oz spray bottle, vitamin C powder, green tea, water, and liquid vitamin E.

Directions:

  • blendinggreenteaFirst brew an extra potent cup of green tea (with about 7 oz of water).  Use 4 tea bags of green tea or 8 grams of loose green tea. Steep in hot water for about four minutes, then drain.  You can also grind the green tea extremely finely with a coffee grinder, shake it with 7 oz of warm water and then filter the water with a french press.
  • Pour the green tea solution into your spray bottle.
  • Grind 4 grams of vitamin C into very fine powder using a coffee grinder (i’ve used both tablets and powder – powder works best), then add to the spray bottle.
  • Add a teaspoon of Liquid vitamin E to your spray bottle.
  • After all the ingredients are added, shake the spray bottle vigorously to mix
  • Use liberally every day, especially after exposure to the sunshine!

Recommended products:

Sources: Vitamin C and Vitamin E Solution, Topical Application of Green Tea

Originally posted 2013-06-02 02:57:29.

Green Tea Recipes

Green tea recipes don’t just come in a cup! You need a fork, spoon and straw to savor all the ways green tea can spice up, and “health-up”, some of your favorite foods. In fact, green tea has been shown in numerous studies to help reduce high cholesterol, boost energy, and lower the risk of heart disease, liver disease and diabetes. Try these green tea recipes to find out how this superfood can add amazing health benefits and flavor to your favorite meals, snacks, sides and drinks.

Green Tea Dressing Recipe: Mix in a quarter cup of prepared green tea with your favorite vinaigrette, and then drizzle the antioxidant-boosted dressing over your favorite mix of greens for a salad topped with richer flavor and a lot of health.

Green tea recipes with chicken:

  • Steamed Green Tea Chicken: Toss chicken pieces in a steamer filled with green tea, already brewed! Steam the chicken as you would normally, for a meal infused with flavor and antioxidants.
  • Green Tea Glaze: Mixing brewed green tea with a little honey (to thicken) and your favorite spices makes a sweet, health-filled marinade for chicken when you barbecue, broil or bake it.

Green tea drink recipes:

  • Green Tea Infused Milk: Mix equal parts brewed green tea with milk for a light and healthy drink. Try this drink hot with extra strongly brewed green tea for what would basically be a green tea latte. 
  • Green Yogurt Smoothie: Add in a cup of brewed green tea (instead of plain water) when you toss your fruit, yogurt and milk in the blender for a smoothie with a tint of green color and a boost of flavor and health.

Green tea recipes with grains:

  • Green and Great Oatmeal: Oatmeal gets even healthier with a dash of green tea! Just steep a green tea bag in a pot of boiling water, then remove the tea bag and add your oats to the tea-infused water and mix together. Add a little honey and you’ve got sweetness, a burst of antioxidants and a good dose of fiber, vitamins and minerals.
  • French Toast with Tea! Green tea French toast may sound a bit far-fetched, but once you dip your toast (use whole, sprouted grain bread for a healthier recipe) in a bowl of brewed green tea mixed with an egg and a dash of milk, you’ll never go back to your old recipe again. The rich flavor and green goodness will make this breakfast treat welcome at any time of day.

Green tea recipes go great with many breakfast, lunch and dinner staples. So perk up your energy, boost your health and add a bit of green goodness to your diet with these flavorful recipes.

Sources for “Green Tea Recipes”:

  • http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/green-tea

Originally posted 2013-12-17 07:49:09.

How 'bout green tea?

Green Tea health benefits

Green tea is showing up everywhere these days from face wash and shampoo, to energy drinks. Though green tea’s health benefits have been known in the Eastern hemisphere for thousands of years, recent research is confirming these benefits and revealing what makes green tea so effective.

History of Green Tea

Green tea, black tea, white tea and oolong tea all come from the same species of plant camellia sinesis. These are actually the only teas that can officially be called tea. Each tea has a unique flavor, color and properties depending on the way it is processed.

Green tea is very minimally processed and has been used as a medicine in China for over 4000 years. Green tea has been used to treat depression, digestive issues and nervous conditions. Due to the findings of modern research, green tea has become popular in the Western Hemisphere as well. 

Health Benefits of Green Tea

Green tea can boost metabolism. Green tea’s catechins, in combination with its moderate caffeine content, can help you burn fat more quickly.

Green tea helps prevent heart disease. A Harvard Health study found that those who drank the most green tea had a 28% lower risk of coronary artery disease.  The antioxidants in green tea help lower Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and boost High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol.

Green tea improves exercise endurance. Since the catechins in green tea boost the body’s ability to use fat as fuel, this helps improve your body’s muscular endurance. The antioxidants in green tea also help the body’s muscles recover more quickly.

Green tea helps prevent diabetes. Green tea can help regulate glucose levels by slowing the rise of blood sugar after eating a meal, in turn preventing insulin spikes.

Green tea reduces the risk of cancer. The antioxidants are thought to fight free radicals that may cause cancer.

Green tea reduces acne. Green tea’s catechins have also been found to fight the bacteria that grow in the skin’s pores and cause acne. 

Green tea helps fight wrinkles and the signs of aging. Due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, green tea reduces sun damage to the skin when applied topically.

Nutrition Highlights

  • 0 calories
  • 0g fat
  • 0mg sodium
  • 0g carbohydrates

Considerations

As with most things in life, moderation is key. According to a Harvard Health study, the catechins found in green tea have been reported to raise liver enzymes in animals. Green tea is also a source of oxalates which can cause kidney stones. If you have a history of kidney stones, it would probably be a good idea to stick with less than five cups of green tea per day.

Drink up

I enjoy hot, decaffeinated green tea in the evening with some honey, but it’s also delicious cold.  To make iced green tea, simply brew your tea as usual, then refrigerate  for 30 minutes (make sure to remove the tea bag before refrigerating, as the bitter qualities increase with time). After refrigerating, add some ice cubes, a straw, and a drizzle of honey (if  desired).

ReferencesThe Green Tea Revolution on Random HistoryThe Miracle of Green Tea on About.comBenefit of drinking green tea.. on Harvard Health PublicationGreen tea may lower heart disease risk on Harvard Health Publication13 Reasons Tea is Good for You on Time Health & Family

Originally posted 2013-10-07 15:37:14.