Green Tea vs. Black Coffee - The Greatist Debate
With two of the world’s favorite caffeine-packing beverages in the ring, this battle might seem like anybody’s call. But when it comes to choosing the better early morning brew, does coffee or green tea deserve the Greatist crown?
Meet The Competitors
Hailing from the camellia sinesis plant indigenous to mainland China, green tea is packed with powerful antioxidants called catechins, which have been shown to potentially inhibit the growth of some cancers . Research also suggests long-term consumption of green tea might help prevent obesity, type 2 diabetes, and coronary disease . This mellower brew (with approximately 1/3 the caffeine of coffee) has also been linked to stress relief and clearer thinking  . Guess they don’t call it “zen” for nothing.
Competition is just as fierce in the other corner. Coffee packs three times the caffeine of green tea and also boasts its own batch of beneficial antioxidants. Drinking java has even been linked to protecting against age-related mental decline . And as with green tea, antioxidants consumed when downing a Cup o’ Joe might also help reduce the risk of type II diabetes .
While coffee may win a few more popularity points over its leafy green competitor — at least in the West — current research points to no clear-cut healthier choice. Since a significant body of research comes from population surveys as well as animal and in vitro studies, experts are hesitant to steer caffeine lovers in any one direction without more clinical trials .
Studies do, however, deem both beverages 100 percent safe, as long as they’re consumed in moderation. Too much caffeine can lead to side effects including insomnia and upset stomach, so those with sleep or anxiety disorders and digestive problems might consider steering clear. For everyone else, three Venti Frappuchinos may be overdoing it, so catch up on safe caffeine intake (around 400mg per day for men, 300mg for women, and just 45mg for kids under 6) before pulling that all-nighter . Green tea, specifically, also contains small amounts of vitamin K, which can make anticoagulant drugs less effective. Among coffee's potential cons are decreased iron and calcium absorption and possible blood pressure spikes among infrequent drinkers.
And while the latest bottled and canned varieties of both drinks are enticing on-the-go, be sure to check the nutrition facts for added sugar, corn syrup, and fat.
Which buzz-worthy beverage gets your vote? Let us know in the comments below!
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