A number of studies are reporting on the health benefits of green tea extract
. In particular studies had pointed to the potential of green tea extract to enhance fat oxidation. Japanese researchers have further contributed to this line of research by assessing the metabolic effects of green tea extract
during exercise. The studies were carried out in mice so that detailed metabolic measurements could be made in skeletal muscle. Mice were divided into one of four groups: controls, exercise, green tea extract, or exercise plus green tea extract
. After 8-10 weeks, exercise time to exhaustion was improved in the combination green tea + exercise animals compared to the exercise only animals. There were several other favorable metabolic adaptations in the green tea
+ exercise group including decreased glycogen utilization and increased fat oxidation. The study also showed a decrease in muscle malonyl coA, a potent inhibitor of fat oxidation, providing a mechanism to explain the fat burning effects of green tea. The study shows direct beneficial effects of green tea
on exercise performance by increasing the burning of fat over carbohydrate.
Murase T, Haramizu S, Shimotoyodome A, Tokimitsu I, Hase T. Green tea extract improves running endurance in mice by stimulating lipid utilization during exercise. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2006 Jun;290(6):R1550-6. Epub 2006 Jan 12.