BENEFITS OF DRINKING TEA
Tea is a daily drink consumed in green, black, white, or herbal forms nearly everywhere around the world. Yet tea is often underrated compared to other nutritional products, pills, and supplements. Here are a few of the tried and tested health benefits of drinking tea
Many of tea’s health properties come from its high antioxidant content
. The particular form found in tea, called flavonoids, may help prevent free-radical formation in our bodies that can contribute to cardiovascular disease and certain forms of cancer.
However, the more processed the tea leaves, the fewer antioxidants they contain. Thus, green tea frequently has a higher flavonoid concentration than black or oolong teas, whose leaves have been fermented or oxidized.
Teas act as natural immune-boosters because of their anti-microbial properties
. In particular, green tea has been shown to kill bacteria that cause infections
and dental plaque
formation in addition to reducing bad breath
. However, the down-side of tea’s anti-microbial effects means that certain teas
, such as rosehip and pomegranate, may interact with certain antibiotic medications. To be safe, if you are on anti-biotics, consult your physician before beginning a tea-drinking regime.
Certain types of tea have been consumed for centuries as a way to support digestive health. For example, ginger tea
is a common natural treatment to soothe nausea or an upset stomach. Additionally, peppermint tea
has been shown to soothe symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Green tea, which has similar anti-inflammatory properties, has also been shown to aid in digestion
and relief from IBS.
PRODUCTIVITY WITH LESS CAFFEINE
Teas contain a different blend of stimulants
compared to coffee, which often has a higher dose of caffeine. This caffeine in coffee can produce jitters, heart palpitations, digestive unrest, and a sense of being “wired” that can interfere with productivity for some. On the other hand, green tea been shown to improve concentration, memory, and overall brain function
while producing fewer of the negative side effects associated with caffeine. Thus, for those who are sensitive to caffeine, tea can be an important alternative to coffee in improving work productivity.
PHYSICAL PERFORMANCE WITH FEWER CALORIES
When tea is consumed on its own, it generally contains fewer than 10 calories. Rather than add to the waistline, certain teas are thought to improve fat-burning. For example, research
has shown that green tea may enhance metabolism while improving physical performance in endurance activities. However, the caveat
to this information is that sugar-sweetened teas counteract these effects. Sugar-sweetened beverages
are associated with obesity, type 2 diabetes, and other noncommunicable diseases. Thus, for optimal health consume tea sugar free, either on its own or with a splash of lemon or non-dairy milk.