People often ask about what is EGCG extract? Where can I find EGCG? what are EGCG benefits? And what are side effects of EGCG – I thought I’ll do some research and write a post about it.
This post is simplified gathering of information available online and can summarize these aspects about EGCG extract.
Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is a unique plant compound that very famous for its positive impact on health.
It is known to reduce inflammation, aid weight loss, and help prevent heart and brain disease.
What is EGCG?
Formally known as epigallocatechin gallate, EGCG is a type of plant-based compound called catechin. Catechins may be further categorized into different compounds but let’s not go there yet.
EGCG and other related catechins act as potent antioxidants that may protect against cellular damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are highly reactive particles formed in your body that can damage your cells when their numbers get too high. Eating foods high in antioxidants like catechins may help limit free radical damage.
Some researches also suggest that catechins like EGCG may reduce inflammation and prevent certain chronic conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers.
Where can I find EGCG?
EGCG exists naturally in several plant-based foods but is also available as a dietary supplement usually sold in the form of an extract. Its is probably best known for its role as the major active compound in green tea.
In fact, the numerous health benefits associated with drinking green tea are typically credited to its EGCG content.
Though EGCG is predominantly found in green tea, it also exists in small amounts in other foods as well:
- Tea: green, white, oolong, and black teas
- Fruits: cranberries, strawberries, blackberries, kiwis, cherries, pears, peaches, apples, and avocados.
- Nuts: pecans, pistachios, and hazelnuts
What are EGCG health benefits?
Several studies have indicated that EGCG provides numerous health benefits, including reduced inflammation, weight loss, and improved heart and brain health.
Ultimately, more research is needed to better understand how EGCG may be used as a preventative tool or treatment for disease, though current data is promising.
- Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects
EGCG is primarily famous for its strong antioxidant capacity and potential to reduce stress and inflammation. Free radicals are highly reactive particles that can cause damage to your cells. Excessive free radical production leads to oxidative stress.
As an antioxidant, EGCG protects your cells from damage associated with oxidative stress and suppresses the activity of pro-inflammatory chemicals produced in your body.
Stress and inflammation are linked to a variety of chronic illnesses, including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.
Thus, the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects of EGCG are thought to be one of the main reasons for its broad disease-preventing applications.
- Heart health
Researches also suggests that EGCG in green tea may support heart health by reducing blood pressure, cholesterol, and the accumulation of plaque in blood vessels — all major risk factors for heart disease.
There are ongoing researches happening to better understand how EGCG in green tea may reduce heart disease risk.
- Weight loss
EGCG can also promote weight loss, especially when taken alongside the caffeine naturally found in green tea.
Although much of the study results on EGCG’s effect on weight are inconsistent, some long-term observational research noted that consuming about 2 cups (14.7 ounces or 434 ml) of green tea per day was associated with lower body fat and weight.
Additional human studies have collectively found that taking 100–460 mg of EGCG together with 80–300 mg of caffeine for at least 12 weeks is linked to significant weight loss and reduction of body fat.
Still, changes in weight or body composition are not consistently seen when EGCG is taken without caffeine.
- Brain health
Early research also suggests that EGCG in green tea may play a role in improving neurological cell function and preventing degenerative brain diseases.
In some studies, EGCG injections significantly improved inflammation, as well as recovery and regeneration of neural cells in mice with spinal cord injuries.
Additionally, multiple observational studies in humans found a link between a higher intake of green tea and a reduced risk of age-related brain decline, as well as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. However, the available data is inconsistent.
What’s more, it remains unclear whether EGCG specifically or perhaps other chemical components of green tea have these effects.
More research is needed to better understand whether EGCG may effectively prevent or treat degenerative brain diseases in humans.
Dosage and possible side effects of EGCG.
Even though EGCG has been studied for decades, its effects are quite varied and therefore recommended dosage is inconsistent.
Some experts believe that its because EGCG easily degrades in the presence of oxygen, and many people don’t absorb it efficiently in the digestive tract. It may also be related to the fact that a lot of EGCG
bypasses the small intestine too quickly and ends up being degraded by bacteria in the large intestine.
A single cup (8 ounces or 250 ml) of brewed green tea typically contains about 50–100 mg of EGCG.
One group of researchers suggested a safe intake level of 338 mg of EGCG per day when ingested in solid supplemental form.
- Possible side effects
It’s important to note that EGCG is not 100% safe or risk-free. In fact, EGCG supplements have been associated with serious side effects, such as:
- liver and kidney failure
- low blood sugar
Some experts theorize that these negative effects may be related to toxic contamination of the supplements and not the EGCG itself, but regardless, you should be very cautious if you’re considering taking this supplement.
It may still be a good idea to avoid supplement as much as you can and get the EGCG benefits from the food that contains high EGCG content. To browser some of our green tea collection, click here.Some of the Teas available on website with great health benefits are:
1. Ginger Mint Wonders - A delicious herbal blend of chamomile, peppermint and spices, great as an after-meal tea.
2. Organic Detox Sensation - Our popular Organic Detox Sensation will not only help cleanse your system, you'll also love its citrusy lemongrass punch and smooth herbal note. Enough for a reason to detox
3. Gymnema & Puerh - Gymnema Sylvestere is the key ingredient in this blend, and it has long been used in herbal medicine. It is used to lessen the cravings for sugar. It also helps to balance blood sugar levels.
4. Magical Meditation - Sit back, relax, and enjoy this amazing blend while the world’s magical nature reveals itself to you.
5. Claritea & Focus - This powerful and extremely beneficial blend combines Green Tea and Organic Herbs to create a well-balanced, potent and essential blend to increase focus and concentration.