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Green tea and turmeric

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#1 carruthers209

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Posted 26 July 2013 - 04:58 PM

Kathrynne-This article was just posted today in Sciencedaily.com, one of my very favorite reading sites. It is so exciting to see both green tea and turmeric in the news in such a positive light in that seemingly endless struggle with Parkinson's and now Alzheimer's, etc. diseases. Of course that age old issue of crossing the blood-brain-barrier once again rears its ugly head. So of course I am asking you now about green tea. Does the research indicate it crosses the blood-brain-barrier? I've read contradicting information-it crosses the blood-brain-barrier in mice but not humans or yes, it does. Of course I am totally crossing my fingers that the answer is-yes it does! So what do you think and what can it possibly mean for the Parkinson's community?

#2 Kathrynne Holden, MS

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Posted 26 July 2013 - 07:36 PM

Carruthers, I've long advocated use of both green tea and turmeric for folks with PD; yes, there is a lot of back-and-forth discussion about whether components cross the blood-brain-barrier, but we know relatively little about this area as yet, and I think it's best to utilize these valuable foods while scientists work to figure it out.

In any case, you'll be glad to know that one component of green tea - Theanine - does cross the blood-brain barrier, and is reported to have positive effects on the central nervous system. Curcumin is still being studied in animal models, but looks promising. I recommend frequent use of both green tea and turmeric -- both are already known to have many health benefits and I think in time will be shown beneficial in PD as well.
Best regards,

Kathrynne Holden, MS

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#3 carruthers209

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Posted 26 July 2013 - 10:20 PM

Oh, that is such great news!! I am thrilled that at least green tea, well, theanine at least, crosses the blood brain barrier and now this study cited says that it helps support keeping the neurons alive in Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, etc., that are continually damaged by whatever toxic process is causing the neuron loss. Of course I've been putting turmeric in our diet for several years along with the herbal supplements-thanks Kathrynne for the great recipe of fried red onions, olive oil, black pepper and turmeric along stock or water for making that delicious rice recipe. It's one of my favorite recipes and in fact, I am now adding barley to the brown rice to increase the "healthy" factor. It makes a great fried rice with scrambled egg in the morning-yummy.

So, now onto green tea. I remember Dr Oz recommending matcha green tea in one of his shows which is finely ground up green tea leaves. This sounds like more inclusive of ingesting the necessary micronutrients in green tea instead of the usual steeping method. I am so excited and now need more information on green tea. Do you have some great recipes and information on how to maximize the benefit to share with us? Thanks!!! I am so excited to finally have something that has scientific data on humans to be beneficial for Parkinson's-it has been such a long wait. How much tea is the person supposed to drink every day? Maybe I can add the tea (in liquid form) to other dishes to increase the amount ingested every day.

#4 Kathrynne Holden, MS

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Posted 28 July 2013 - 05:52 PM

Carruthers, the amount of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) – a powerful polyphenol found in green tea – is much greater in matcha than in the whole green tea leaves, a very good reason to use it.

Now, having said that, I personally don’t care much for the taste of green tea, so I first make a pot of black tea; then when it has cooled somewhat, I add green tea and steep several minutes. The reason being that green tea is much more delicate than black and the antioxidant properties are easily destroyed by too much heat. So, whereas black tea needs boiling water to effectively steep, green tea (also matcha) needs water at around 170 degrees F. There is some disagreement regarding icing green tea, as it is thought the ice may bind the catechins, but I don’t know that we have the final word on that.

It is also thought that the brewed tea must be drunk as is, and not used in cooking – again, because further cooking destroys the valuable constituents.

I hope this is useful to you – let us know how your tea adventures turn out!
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Kathrynne Holden, MS

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#5 carruthers209

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Posted 12 August 2013 - 11:18 PM

Well, thank you for this information about green tea. Sorry for the delay-just got back from my dad's home where he has 24/7 caregivers for his Alzheimers. It's not a journey anyone signs up for but he's happy enough with his caregivers who treat him really well. I went to Costco and found Kirkland Green Tea for sale there. It's 100 in the package with nylon bags. The tea is a combination of matcha tea (the powder) and sencha tea (leaves) which is the first plucking of the tea plants in Japan. I made the tea this noon-it's really good and really smooth tasting-not the typical bitter green tea (I bought the cheap stuff before I found Costco). I loved it-I put the tea bag into a tall cold glass of ice cubes with cold water where it dissolves the matcha and then put the remaining tea leaf bag into a cup of hot water-sort of a twofer. I know the Japanese love green tea and put it in their ice cream, various desserts including cake and small chewy things, etc. I think I even remember someone using it in a TV cooking show in their smoking-the-meat-recipe-hmm-something to follow up on. Any ideas or suggestions? Thanks for being here for all of us. It's wonderful having a "go to" place! I will share recipes as I come up with them-

#6 Kathrynne Holden, MS

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Posted 14 August 2013 - 05:53 PM

You are way ahead of me, I haven't found matcha locally at all, although I'm sure I could find it online. I think you're doing just the right thing by not overheating it. I would not cook with it, as that is believed to destroy the valuable properties. However, I do sometimes make a pot of chamomile tea (relaxing), then when the temperature drops a bit, add green tea and it's quite nice. I also do the same with mint. I keep a mint plant or two, and I also dry some mint from time to time. Either fresh or dried mint can be made into a very refreshing and energizing tea. Pour boiling water over the mint, let cool to around 170 degrees F and add the green tea. Wonderful with a touch of honey, or as is.

Please do share any recipes you find or create, I am certain they will be of interest to others, as well as me.
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Kathrynne Holden, MS

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