Does Green Tea Boost Your Immune System?
Does green tea provide protection against certain viruses? This is a question we get asked a lot lately. Well, the answer is complicated. We found this article particularly helpful in answering that question. For your convenience we’ve added some excerpts for below. The article was written by Amber Charles Alexis, MSPH, RDN on 4/6/2022 and Medically reviewed by Katherine Marengo LDN, RDN.
Green tea (Camellia sinensis) is one of the most popular health beverages around the world.
It’s recently been investigated for a possible role in managing the Sars Covid-2 , virus which causes illness. You may have heard that drinking green tea prevents or cures the disease.”
The article further explains whether green tea effects corona virus and offers some tips to improve your immune system.
Does green tea prevent or cure Corona Virus?
Green tea is rich in health-promoting polyphenols, such as epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), which has anti-viral effects against single-stranded RNA (ssRNA) viruses like Zika, hepatitis C, influenza (flu), dengue, and others (1Trusted Source, 3Trusted Source, 4Trusted Source, 5Trusted Source).
These lke the corona virus is an ssRNA virus. Thus, green tea extracts continue to be investigated for their potential role in treating this virus and managing the pandemic (1Trusted Source, 2Trusted Source).”
Test-tube research shows that green tea extracts may combat the Sars Covid-2 virus by damaging the spike protein, preventing its entry into human cells and reducing the overall volume of the virus (3Trusted Source, 4Trusted Source, 5Trusted Source, 6Trusted Source).
Treatment of the test tube cells with EGCG was most effective during early stages of infection (3Trusted Source).
However, it’s important to understand that drinking green tea itself can’t prevent or cure any virus. Most studies showing an effect used single green tea extracts like EGCG in concentrated amounts much higher than what’s found in the natural tea.
Nonetheless, green tea extracts may have potential to be used for natural treatment of viruses after further human research and testing.
Remember, the best way to prevent serious illness from any virus is by getting vaccinated, maintaining physical distancing, and washing your hands often.
Are there benefits to drinking green tea if you have a viral infection?
The EGCG found in green tea may also shorten infection periods by suppressing viral activity, although this effect has only been observed in test-tube studies. We need human research before we can draw conclusions (9Trusted Source).
Regardless, you may find that sipping on a warm cup of green tea during your… infection is simply soothing.
Green tea and immune health
Green tea contains small amounts of the following immune-boosting micronutrients (10Trusted Source):
- Zinc: may reduce harmful reactive oxygen species caused by infections
- Selenium: stimulates the immune system to combat infections
- Copper: enhances activity of the body’s natural killer cells
- Vitamin B2: enhances antibody function against viral infections
- Vitamin B12: increases the production of immune cells
Nutrient deficiencies impair immune health. For instance, research suggests that selenium deficiency may contribute to more severe illness (11Trusted Source).”
Green tea infusions made by steeping dried green tea leaves or a tea bag in hot water contain varying levels of these micronutrients, depending on the quality of soil it was grown in (10Trusted Source).
Overall, concentrations of micronutrients in green tea appear low.
Green tea contains small amounts of the micronutrients zinc, copper, selenium, and vitamins B2 and B12, all of which are shown to boost immune health.”
Green tea contains only small amounts of immune-boosting micronutrients. Enjoy infused green tea along with these tips to better support your overall immune health:
- Increase your intake of anti-inflammatory foods, especially fruits and vegetables (12Trusted Source, 13Trusted Source)
- Exercise regularly (unless you’re currently sick) (12Trusted Source)
- Avoid smoking, since it compromises immune health (13Trusted Source, 14Trusted Source)
- Practice hand-washing and hand hygiene with sanitizers to limit viral spread (15Trusted Source)
- Aim for 7–9 hours of quality sleep each night, as poor sleep may impair immune health (16Trusted Source)”
Increase fruit and vegetable intake, exercise regularly, avoid smoking, practice handwashing and hand hygiene, and aim for 7-9 hours per night to boost your immune health.
The bottom line
Green tea is a popular drink often touted as a health beverage. Some claims may hold true: it has proven antiviral effects against single-stranded RNA (ssRNA) viruses like Zika, hepatitis C, influenza, and dengue.
Its potential role in combating viruses continues to be investigated, but drinking green tea is not yet proven to prevent or cure [any virus].”
Vaccination in conjunction with physical distancing and masking when appropriate, remains the best way to protect yourself and others from severe illness.
There are many studies that suggests that green tea can help to boost your immune system, and in this post, we explore why and how green tea may help to prevent and/or recover from viral infections
As the green tea with the highest antioxidant content on the market today (including Morning Matcha) it stands to reason that with the highest EGCG content too and retaining more vitamins and minerals from the camelia sensis plant (tea plant), then if any green tea can help to boost your immune system, then the best green tea to put to the test is our high antioxidant organic green tea.
Green Tea Packets Keep Our Tea Field Fresh.
Our green tea is concentrated green tea that is ready to drink, it is brewed with natural spring water and then sealed in our instant green tea packets keeping our tea as fresh as the day it was picked.
I.E Green Tea contains the equivalent antioxidants and EGCG’s of 14 cups of the most popular green tea bags and even contains more of these immune system boosting antioxidants than Morning Matcha Green Tea.