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All the Benefits of Catechins
Medicine and technology have grown by leaps and bounds in the last century. While new medications are being developed every day to fight disease, we can also look to ingredients in nature to help.
What are Catechins?
Catechins are naturally occurring compounds found in different types of plants, called flavonoids. Flavonoids are powerful antioxidants that may help protect the body from free radicals. There are different types of catechins found in plants. These different types of the compound all have effects on the human body.
What are the Benefits of Catechins?
Catechins have been shown to be good for the skin. They help promote the skinís natural defenses and healing properties. Catechins work to neutralize free radicals that directly contribute to aging. Studies show people suffering from diabetes may benefit from a diet rich in catechins. Catechins may boost the bodyís ability to produce insulin. People with diabetes have trouble producing enough insulin to counteract blood sugars. When certain catechins are consumed along with starchy foods, like bagels, the blood sugar spike that is normally produced is inhibited.
What Foods Contain Catechins?
With the health boost catechins can produce, it is beneficial to know what foods they are found in. Green tea is a major source of catechins. It contains 120 milligrams per 100 grams or about 3.5 ounces of tea. Green tea extracts also contain powerful catechins without the added caffeine. Black tea also contains catechins, but a bit less per gram than green tea. Black tea contains 25 milligrams per 100 grams of liquid.
Cocoa, and cocoa-derived products like chocolate, contain catechins. The darker the chocolate, the more catechins it contains. 100 grams of dark chocolate contains about 50 milligrams of catechins.
Certain fruits and vegetables contain catechins. Some fruits include blackberries, raspberries, cherries, apples, and pears. Blackberries contain the most catechins, weighing in at 40 milligrams per 100 grams of the berry. Other fruits contain about four to eight milligrams per 100 grams. Vegetables that contain catechins include fava beans. Red wine is also a source of catechins, containing about 10 milligrams per 3.5 ounces.
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