So when I finally settled into my first apartment in Jiangxi Province I came to the horrible realization that Chinese drink tea! The only thing I could find that resembled my favorite morning beverage was…. Nescafe! OMG! It wasn’t until a couple of months later, during a visit to Nanchang (the provincial capital) that Audraie (another foreign teacher) and I discovered real coffee beans.
Then, on a return trip, we found a coffee pot and a grinder. That seemed like enough inventory to start my own coffee bar. What’s that saying about “location, location, location?” Anyway, I had a lot of fun and didn’t manage to lose too much money…
By the end of my first year in China I’d lost 40 pounds. I drank a lot of green tea, but tea alone didn’t get the job done. Here are a few suggestions for using green tea to put you on the path to a healthier, slimmer you.
Start each day with a freshly brewed pot of green tea and a notebook. Old habits die hard, so keep a journal. What went wrong yesterday? How will today be better? Make lists; write yourself notes of encouragement. Your morning quiet time with green tea should end with a healthy breakfast. Don’t skip it!
Exercise is vital to your health. My first apartment in China was on the sixth floor and there was no elevator. I also had no car. There is strong evidence that green tea helps boost your metabolism. Put the added fat-burning potential to good use by walking more and sitting less.
Start each meal with a pot of green tea and a sense of adventure. Try foods that are weird, but good for you. Eat small bites and chew slowly. Chopsticks are great for this!
Every Chinese neighborhood has a farmers market full of produce picked that very morning. Small bits of meat are purchased to complement the vegetables, not the other way around. Avoid highly processed foods as much as possible. That includes those sugary green tea drinks in a can.
Every time I go somewhere in China, I am handed a small cup of water as soon as I sit down. It’s not a good idea to drink the tap water, so every home and office has a water dispenser. Drink plenty of water daily.
It took some time to get used to rice with every meal. You don’t have to go overboard, but try rice as a frequent substitute for your usual carbohydrates. It’s excellent for your digestion.
Most people can’t just up and move to China, so bring a little bit of China to you. Green tea has benefits beyond fat-burning potential. Use it to calm your mind and focus on your goals. The longest journey starts with a single step.