Why Tea is Good for You!
Researchers say drinking three or more cups of tea a day is as good for you as drinking plenty of water and may even have extra health benefits!
Fall has arrived and winter is right on its heels so what better time to curl up with a steaming mug of fresh hot tea? The health benefits of tea are documented and are too good to ignore! Our guide to the health benefits of tea will enlighten you on this delicious tasting, health packed beverage.
White tea comes from the camellias sinensis plant. Its buds are harvested before they are fully open and undergo minimal processing. White tea is deemed such because of the small white hairs on the buds of the plant that turn white when the tea is dried. This tea has a light sweet flavor naturally thus no sweeteners need be added to make it palatable. A revelation noted in recent scientific studies indicates that white tea contains even more polyphenols, which are the antioxidants that fight and kill cancer cells, than green tea. Other health benefits of white tea include how it helps prevent growth of plaque on teeth.
With half the caffeine of coffee and boasting vitamins C, A, B and K, the health benefits of black tea include the ingredient theophylline to improve cholesterol. A new study from University College London shows black tea has an effect on stress hormone levels in the body. Study participants who drank black tea were found to have lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol in their blood after a stressful event. Black tea accounts for over ninety percent of all tea sold in the West. It is fully fermented and keeps its flavor for several years.
"Better to be deprived of food for three days, than tea for one." (Ancient Chinese Proverb)
Interestingly enough, Rooibos (pronounced ROY-boss) is part of the legume family of plants and is used in making this sweet and slightly nutty tasting tea. Free of caffine and packed with antioxidants, the health benefits of this tea are numerous. Rooibos tea has a deep amber color and is sometimes called ‘red bush tea.’ Can you believe that the longer it is brewed the better it tastes? It is said to soothe stomach pains, stabilize blood sugar in diabetics and can aid in weight loss. Pregnant women report this tea is great for easing morning sickness!
You would have to live in cave to avoid hearing about the health benefits of green tea. Green tea is not fermented, that is one of the reasons it is so full of powerful antioxidants and such a healthful drink. Green tea leaves are steamed, preventing the EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate, a powerful antioxidant) compound from being oxidized. In additon to boosting your immune system, the Chinese have long used green tea to treat medical issues from headaches to depression. Recent research has found that green tea may help with a rise in metabolic rate, curb your appetitie and aid in digestion.
As you can see the health benefits of tea are worth investing the time to find out which is your favorite! With caffeinated and caffeine free tea choices you are sure to find the right recipe for your needs and taste buds. (Recent data shows that after drinking the caffeine contained in tea your energy rises slowly, plateaus and then gradually decreases, so you don’t get the ‘crash’ sometimes associated with coffee products.) Tea is tasty any time or the day or evening and the added health benefits make it all the more appealing. For fabulous flavor and optimum health, try tea!
A list of sources for tea:
Laura Miller writes on beauty, fashion, and health related topics from the glamorous Southern city of Atlanta, Ga. Her portfolio and her cosmetic collection grow daily.