The desire for quick weight loss has grown more and more popular in America, and supposed shortcuts and accelerators like green tea have been heavily marketed to influence consumers to try this alternative method of results. While there is some evidence that proves green tea is a factor in weight loss, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has yet to support or endorse this claim.
What Is Green Tea?
Green tea is basically the steamed leaves of Camellia sinensis, a perennial evergreen shrub used to make black and oolong teas. While green tea is typically consumed as a drink, it has also been marketed in pill form for weight loss. There isn't enough evidence to support the idea that green tea has a direct link to weight loss, but the most likely reasoning behind this idea is the caffeine content of green tea.
Green tea has been historically known for its use in keeping people awake during long ceremonies in Chinese culture. As far as weight loss, the caffeine in green tea may be responsible for a brief sense of appetite suppression, and it may stimulate calorie burning and water weight loss. These effects, as noted by Dr. Katherine Zeratsky of the Mayo Clinic, are not scientifically supported enough to be determined factual. At any rate, even the potential for these effects is too minimal to recommend an increase in your caffeine intake for weight loss.
Cautions and Side Effects
Green tea pills can contain as much caffeine as seven cups of coffee. While caffeine is relatively safe in most adults, too much caffeine can have severe effects on the liver if not taken with food.
Insomnia, anxiety, irritability, upset stomach, nausea and diarrhea are all more likely side effects of the consumption of green tea pills.
Other Health Uses
Green tea has been more scientifically connected to other health benefits such as genital warts (when used as a topical ointment), protection against certain cancers, and possibly some positive effects in those who suffer from diabetes and heart disease.