Green tea is a popular beverage among health enthusiasts and anyone else looking to benefit its health-promoting active ingredients.
But green tea extract is the concentrated form of green tea (hence the reason why you can get a cup’s worth of green tea in a tiny capsule) and it’s a common ingredient used in many energy and health products.
Although, it still provides the same health benefits, namely due to the antioxidant properties which we know help us to fight off the disease-causing free radicals that cancers and other diseases.
And there’s also good evidence which suggests green tea extract may help with a lot more, especially where cognitive-enhancement, performance, weight loss, heart health, blood sugar, etc are concerned. (1)
So, today, we have some really top-notch green tea extract products that we think anyone can benefit from which won’t break the bank either.
Note: Green tea extract does contain some naturally-occurring caffeine as is it extracted from tea leaves. And the combination of caffeine and catechins which are contained in green tea extract can have an effect on some physiological processes.
So, to be safe we highly advise anyone with an existing medical condition/s (or who should probably avoid green tea extract for whatever reason) to seek the advice of a medical professional before considering supplementation with any of the green tea extract products in this review.
In a Hurry? Check Out The Editor’s Pick and Be On Your Way…
Nobi Nutrition Premium Green Tea Extract Fat Burner W/ EGCG and Apple Cider Vinegar 500mg
This is an interesting product because it not only contains 500mg of green tea extract standardized to 98% polyphenols and 50% EGCG. But there’s also 10mg of apple cider vinegar powder.
Apple cider vinegar is made in a similar process to alcohol but, of course, it doesn’t contain any as the alcohol is turned into acetic acid which is the main active ingredient.
Apple cider vinegar is included in this formula to help support detoxification programs, digestion and liver health but there are so many more benefits.
One article published by the American Diabetes Association found that apple cider vinegar significantly improved postprandial insulin sensitivity from a high carb meal in individuals with Type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance. (2)
This was determined after subjects consumed 20 g apple cider vinegar, 40 g water, and 1 tsp saccharine followed by a meal two minutes later, which consisted of a white bagel, butter, and orange juice which was 87 g total of carbohydrates. Or, subjects were given a placebo.
Also, no volunteers were taking any diabetes medication.
The same review also explained that acetic acid has been shown to suppress disaccharidase activity and raise glucose-6-phosphate concentrations in skeletal muscle, therefore resulting in physiological effects similar to acarbose or metformin.
However evidence is limited in humans, therefore studies would have to be conducted to show the same effects, although the current animal studies do show promise.
As far as weight loss, there is pretty good evidence to suggest apple cider vinegar can help with this too. But, this is mostly due to its effects on increasing the feeling of satiety which typically leads to fewer calories consumed overall. (6)
And the weight loss effects may also be due to the lowered blood sugar and postprandial glycemia. (7)
So, there are no significant effects where weight loss is concerned but any little benefit is a good benefit and this combination seems to offer some pretty respectable benefits.
The product is also third-party tested for purity and potency while being formulated in the USA.
Best Green Tea Picks…
The following products are among the best quality options currently available and we chose them based on ingredients, user satisfaction, and overall value.
PureTea Green Tea Extract 1,000mg
This is a top green tea extract product from PureTea which provides a gentle boost of benefits in a USA-made formula.
Each serving of this potent supplement contains 1,000mg of 98% green tea extract (which is great for inducing the weight loss and cognitive benefits), with about 45% EGCG and 75% polyphenol catechins.
There’s also a small dose (approximately 50mg) of naturally-occurring caffeine and the amino acid L-theanine (also found in green tea) which has shown in studies to improve cognitive performance while also helping to combat the effects of anxiety and stress. (23, 24)
There are no fillers or artificial ingredients contained in this green tea extract and you can choose between 60, 120, and 240 veggie capsules.
NOW Green Tea Extract 400mg
NOW Foods is a household name when it comes to natural nutritional supplements.
Their 400mg green tea extract is a top-notch option containing 32mg of caffeine and at least 40% catechins for a combination of performance and health-boosting benefits.
But in addition to the green tea extract is 60mg (67%) of vitamin C which is also a very important antioxidant (also regenerates other antioxidants in the body) but it’s also required for the biosynthesis of collagen and certain neurotransmitters as well as being involved in protein metabolism.
So, you get a double-whammy of beneficial ingredients in this NOW foods green tea extract supplement.
There are 250, 500, and 750 count options in veggie capsules and the product is also GMP-certified for the highest quality.
Bulk Supplements Green Tea Extract 500mg (Powder)
Bulk Supplements products are known to be as simple as they come. So you can pretty much expect to get pure ingredients with nothing else.
This product contains 500mg of green tea extract standardized to contain 98% total polyphenols 80% catechins and 50% EGCG.
This is a powder however, Bulk Supplements also offers capsules and there are also many different sizes.
Nature’s Wellness Green Tea Extract 500mg
“SPREADING HAPPINESS THROUGH HEALTH”… that’s the motto of Nature’s Wellness and they’re an eco-friendly, family-operated manufacturer located in the US.
But they also believe in happiness through giving back, so every purchase helps to supply women and children around the world with vitamins to aid in preventing malnourishment.
Plus, their products are third-party tested so you know you’re getting nothing but quality.
Their green tea extract comes in 500mg capsules for a healthy dose of beneficial ingredients from the best sources and you can’t go wrong with it.
Jarrow Formulas Water Extracted Green Tea Extract 500mg
Jarrow Formulas is another top nutritional supplement company and their green tea veggie caps contain 500mg of green tea, 5:1 water extract (50% polyphenols and 30% catechins).
This is also a great budget option to get some of the benefits of green tea extract.
Life Extension Decaffeinated Mega Green Tea Extract 725mg
Here’s a simple but effective green tea extract… Each dose (veg capsule) supplies 725mg of green tea decaffeinated extract (98% polyphenols and 45% EGCG) so you don’t have the caffeine typical with green tea extract products which may be better for some people.
But, that’s ok because we previously provided an example of a study that shows that you can experience benefits without the caffeine even when it comes to giving a boost in performance.
This is a great option with a decent amount of the active ingredient so we give it a thumbs up!
Horbaach Super Concentrated Green Tea
Horbaach makes some premium quality products, one of which is their liquid green tea extract. And we had to include a potent liquid in our list for those who prefer this method of administration.
One serving is 1-2ml which is approximately 28-56 drops and you’ll get a good dose of the extract along with the naturally-occurring caffeine which is typical. Other ingredients include vegetable glycerin and purified water.
The product is also lab-tested for purity and potency which is always good for peace of mind that you’re getting what you think you are.
Pure Encapsulations Green Tea Extract (Decaffeinated) 100mg
Pure Encapsulation is a brand typically recommended by practitioners for its supreme quality and every dose of this formula contains 100mg green tea extract (90% tea catechins and 70% EGCG) which may not be as much as many of the other options on our list.
But not everyone needs 500mg of green tea extract to get the benefits and quality is often just as important.
Plus, this is another decaffeinated green tea extract product and there are 60 and 120 count options in their vegan-friendly capsules.
Zhou Nutrition Green Tea Extract 500mg
Each serving of this carefully-crafted, lab-verified, USA-made product contains 500mg of potent green tea extract (95% polyphenols, 80% catechins, and 50% EGCG) all in a veggie capsule.
Zhou Nutrition is committed to creating the best quality products and each batch is tested in their Utah facility to make sure consumers get exactly that.
Nature’s Bounty Green Tea 315mg
Nature’s Bounty is a popular brand that has been around for 40+ years and their products are sold pretty much everywhere and for good reason. They make simple, affordable products that are lab-tested in effective doses.
A serving size is two caps although you can take one and still get a nice dose of green tea extract (315mg), and to who it matters, the caps are not vegan or vegetarian-friendly.
Flamingo Supplements Matcha Green Tea Gummies
We know there are lots of health fanatics out there who also like their gummies which is why we had to include at least one.
A dose (2 gummies) has 20 calories, 5g of carbs, 5g added sugars and 200mg match green tea.
Keep in mind, taste is a subjective thing but these aren’t likely going to taste like your typical gummy candies. Each gummy has 5g of sugar from cane and glucose syrup for sweetness but you’ll still have the green tea taste.
But you’ll never know if you like it until you try and most users seem to be satisfied with the taste for the most part. But the ingredients in these gummies are, as you can see, are a little different from the other products we’ve gathered.
However, this should not affect the benefits associated with the active ingredient. The gummies are also vegan-friendly while being gluten and gelatin-free.
What Is Green Tea Extract?
As mentioned previously, green tea extract is a concentrated form of green tea. According to research the therapeutic properties and benefits of green tea extract are mostly due to the polyphenol (-)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG).
Although there are other polyphenols contained in green tea such as catechins, theaflavins, flavonoids, and tannins.
Benefits of Green Tea Extract
There are supposedly several benefits of consuming green tea extract due to the catechins and caffeine.
Perhaps one of the more attractive benefits of green tea extract is the fact that it has been shown to help with the weight loss process. Caffeine may be the more prominent ingredient that contributes to improvements in body composition but EGCG may also have something to do with it according to research.
One review of several studies on the antiobesity effects of green tea catechins found that these polyphenolic compounds alone may have a positive effect on body weight and composition. (8)
Now, from the few different mechanisms which are thought to possibly have this weight loss effect, the predominating hypothesis points to sympathetic nervous system influence which increases energy expenditure and promotes fat oxidation. (8)
The same review also suggests that since caffeine also acts on the nervous system, it may have a synergistic effect with the catechins to promote weight loss due to energy expenditure and fat oxidation.
Also, one study took 100+ obese women and administered green tea extract at a daily dosage of 856.8 mg for 12 weeks. Well, at the conclusion of the study, significant weight loss, a smaller waist circumference, and improved cholesterol levels were observed, and the women experienced no side effects. (9)
The weight loss results in this study were believed to be somewhat associated with the inhibition of the hunger hormone ghrelin.
But to give the simplest explanation of the how this weight loss is achieved with green tea extract consumption, most studies on green tea extract are supportive of catechins (mainly EGCG) and caffeine being mostly responsible for the thermogenic (a process of calories burned for digestion and the production of heat) effects. (10, 11, 12)
Contains a Good Amount of Antioxidants
Antioxidants are vital for helping to combat oxidative stress by fighting cell damage. (13)
Well, the catechins contained in green tea extract are most responsible for the antioxidant effects, and as explained earlier, EGCG is believed to provide the most benefits. (14)
In one study, 60 patients who were at risk for developing prostate cancer, were given either 600 mg/d of green tea catechins each day or a placebo for one year. By the end, the individuals who actually took green tea catechins showed only a 3% cancer-development whereas the placebo group showed a 30% increase.
The green tea catechin groups also showed reduced lower urinary tract symptoms. (15)
This research suggests that the catechins in green tea extract may help to reduce the development of cancer. Although, more research needs to be conducted to come to a more consistent conclusion.
Heart Health and Blood Sugar
Oxidative stress is highly responsible for hypertension and inflammation of the arteries which are both highly responsible for morbidity and mortality. But green tea extract can combat these issues due to its all-around health-promoting effects. (16)
And the catechins in green tea extract have also been shown to have lipid-lowering effects as well.
In one study where 56 obese, hypertensive individuals were given either a capsule containing 379 mg of green tea extract (GTE) or a placebo for 3 months; systolic and diastolic blood pressure significantly improved along with fasting serum glucose, insulin levels, and insulin resistance in the GTE group. (17)
lipid profile also improved significantly.
So, what this trial proved was that green tea extract can not only improve heart health but it can also improve blood sugar issues.
This is good news for those looking to supplement with the intention of preventing cardiovascular risk factors.
Physical Performance and Recovery
This is a benefit of green tea extract a lot of you were likely hoping for … but right off the bat, we can tell you that since caffeine is a nervous system stimulant, it’ll give a cognitive-performance and energy boost.
That’s why it’s the most beneficial ingredient in pre-workout supplements and also the reason why people drink coffee because it does give you a noticeable boost to keep you alert and going.
But even decaffeinated green tea extract has shown to be beneficial for performance. In fact, one study involving 14 men showed that it increased running distance by 10.9% when they were given 571 mg/d for 4 weeks. (18)
In addition, total fat oxidation rates increased by 24.9% while body fat significantly decreased compared to a placebo group over the intervention period.
As far as recovery from exercise-induced skeletal muscle stress, a few studies have shown that because of the oxidative stress-reducing properties of catechins in green tea extract, the active individual can benefit from improved performance, a delay in muscular fatigue, and protection against cell injury. (19, 20)
Research supports the potential protective effects of green tea extract against cognitive deficits especially in older individuals which again, is related to the positive effects on oxidative stress.
This supports the therapeutic use of green tea polyphenols as a neuroprotective agent and current studies are examining its effects on Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s which it may be very effective for. (21)
But green tea extract has also shown to have a positive effect on memory as well.
One study had 12 volunteers consume either a milk whey-based soft drink containing 27.5 g of green tea extract or a similar drink without green tea. (22)
And there was a notable improvement in working memory but an improvement in task performance was also observed. This is also promising evidence for the improvement of dementia (memory loss and general cognitive decline) as well.
So, as you can see from all of the scientific literature on the potential benefits of the active ingredients in green tea extract, it does show promising results for overall health.
How To Take Green Tea Extract
Make sure to read the product label for recommended dosages as ingredients/ amounts may vary. Companies provide this information for safety and efficacy so it’s a good idea to adhere to the recommendations.
Some products are caps which you’d just simply take with some water or any beverage. Other products come in powder form which you can mix in your liquid of choice while liquid drops can be taken the same way.
How Much Is Considered Safe and Effective?
The general recommendation is 250-500mg per day which is equal to about 3-5 cups of green tea. And for the beneficial effects, it’s a good idea to make sure the product contains a good dose of catechins and EGCG.
But based on many clinical studies reviewed, evidence shows no proof of hepatotoxicity below 800 mg EGCG/day for up to 12 months, therefore this can be a safe and effective dose as well depending on the individual. (25)
Although each individual should always do their due diligence when it comes to dosing.
It’s also best to take green tea extract with food as this can reduce the potential negative effects associated with green tea extract and never exceed the overall recommended dosages as there evidence which suggests it can cause liver damage. (26)
What Are The Potential Side Effects of Green Tea Extract?
Any side effects are associated mostly with the caffeine content in green tea/extract which includes, nausea, dizziness, rapid heartbeat, diarrhea, nervousness, sleep disturbance, etc.
But when taken in recommended doses, most green tea extract products should be safe for most adults, especially when excessive caffeine is not consumed in combination.
Consuming excessive amounts of caffeine even contained in green tea can be fatal.
Who Should Not Take Green Tea Extract
While green tea extract is safe in most cases, there are some instances where it should be avoided as well, for health purposes.
Here are a few instances where green tea extract intake may want to be avoided, although, as was noted in the beginning, anyone with an existing medical condition/ or similar circumstance should consult with a doctor prior to consideration of supplementation with green tea.
You may want to avoid green tea extract supplementation if you’re…
- Living with a heart condition/high blood pressure
- An adolescent
- Suffering from anxiety
- Having trouble sleeping
- Already consuming a lot of caffeine
There may be exceptions in certain instances but consumption would likely need to be much lower than the typical dosage to ensure optimal health.
Green tea extract has many benefits, although, to which extent each individual will experience the effects, varies. But it’s an effective and safe substance when taken in recommended doses and most people who are relatively healthy can benefit from it whether you have it in tea, or opt for a supplement like the ones we’ve picked.