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Brown Rice and Green Tea Benefits

By Joseph Pritchard

A healthful diet has been widely recommended to reduce the risks of heart disease and other debilitating disorders. Two foods included in this category are brown rice and green tea. Supporters of brown rice and green tea believe that consuming them can reap significant health benefits. Understanding their possible benefits will help you decide whether brown rice and green tea are right for you.

Brown Rice

Brown rice, a whole grain, is what white rice starts out as, before it goes through the refinement process. Whole grains are a rich source of fiber and other nutrients. During the refinement process, brown rice has its bran covering removed, which reduces its fiber content and nutritional value. Moreover, brown rice has a lower glycemic index, meaning that it does not cause an unhealthy rapid increase in blood sugar levels. Choosing brown rice over white rice, or other refined grains, improves your overall health.

Benefits of Brown Rice

Brown rice is an excellent source of fiber, B vitamins, magnesium, iron and selenium. These vitamins and nutrients are essential in many functions in the body, such as red blood cell formation, normal nerve function and muscle contraction. Whole grains, like brown rice, reduce the risk of heart disease, prevent constipation, aid in weight loss and prevent some congenital defects in newborns.

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Green Tea

Green tea is made from the unfermented leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant. The purported benefits of green tea are most probably due to compounds called polyphenols, the University of Maryland Medical center explains. Polyphenols are powerful antioxidants that protect your cells from dangerous and damaging free radicals. Green tea also contains alkaloids, such as caffeine and theophylline, which provide a stimulant effect. Green tea can be obtained from liquid extracts made from the plant's leaves. Dietary green tea supplements are also sold in many health stores.

Benefits of Green Tea

Green tea has numerous benefits and can be used to treat or prevent certain pathologic conditions. According to MedlinePlus, a service of the National Institutes of Health, green tea has proved effective in treating genital warts and increasing mental acuity and concentration. Green tea may also be used to lower blood pressure, delay the onset of Parkinson's disease, prevent certain types of cancer and control cholesterol levels. Consult a physician prior to increasing the amount of green tea, or green tea supplements, in your diet.

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