Spilling the tea on tea; what are the benefits?
Drinking tea is a great way to get more water in without getting bored. There are so many different flavours and health benefits! Here is a little guide to see which tea has which benefits and which one you can drink at what time due to the caffeine.
Tea is in general a very healthy option, since it contains almost no calories and hydrates well, just like water. In addition, it provides many more important health benefits compared to water, like the vitamin C, K and E. All these health aspects are the reason I would really recommend incorporating it into your current or planned diet, like The Happy Brain diet. However, keep in mind that these studies are often done by comparing 10 cups versus none. Therefore, you would have to drink at least 5 cups to really reap the health benefits. An important thing is that tea can inhibit your body from processing iron in the body. That is why you should only drink tea in-between meals instead of during meals.
1. Black tea
Black tea is the biggest category, since most mixes have black as a base. One cup contains about 40 mg (to compare, coffee has more than 100 mg per cup), meaning it is relatively high in caffeine. This makes it a great swap for coffee, because it won’t make your caffeine levels spike as much, whilst still giving you energy and improving concentration. It is therefore also still addictive. Just like green and white tea, black tea also has antioxidants. That is great for damaged cells to get repaired again. In addition, it has been connected with lower blood sugar levels, lower cholesterol levels and lower blood pressure, which is very good for the heart. Black tea is also great for the bacteria in your intestines, keeping your gut health good. The same substances that cause these perks have also been shown to be important in the fight against cancer (although it is obviously not a cure, just a nudge in the good direction). Some studies also said that it could help preventing smoke from damaging lungs.
2. Green tea
Green tea is one of the least processed teas, which means that it still contains a lot of health benefits that otherwise got lost in the process. Therefore, it is slightly better than black in that regard, although most benefits are similar. Green tea has the same benefits as the black, but just a little stronger. On top of that, it also has been connected to less cavities, better brain health, less skin problems, less stress and it seems a great help in losing weight. The argument against green is however, that it goes bad relatively quickly. Therefore, you have to be careful in how to store it (temperature, packaging, etc.). The amount of caffeine is about 20 mg per cup. That makes it great for starting up in the morning or to keep your caffeine levels up during the day. Another downside of green tea (and white) is that it does work as a mild laxative, which, in large quantities, can damage the walls of your stomach.
3. White tea
White tea is the purest form there is and has therefore the strongest effects (negative and positive). The effect are about the same once as mentioned for the green version. It contains way less caffeine, only roughly 15 mg per cup. Because of this, I tend to drink it between 4 and 6 in the afternoon. I need less caffeine at that time, but I still want to be active. It’s perfect for that!
White tea is however very delicate and therefore a little more difficult to store and to make. Storage is best in complete darkness and dryness. I should not coming in contact with too much air. A mason jar in a dry, dark cabinet is therefore a great place. You also need to first let the water cool off to about 75 degrees, otherwise you’ll burn the leaves.
4. Herbal tea
Then we come to a special category, since herbal teas are actually not made out of tea leaves. Therefore, I can’t really name one thing that is healthy in this category, since many have special health benefits. For instance, camomile and rooibos tea have no caffeine. They have a soothing effect, making them perfect options when you want to relax or sleep. However, peppermint tea is known to be good when you feel nauseous or when you’re having a migraine. Both those effects are also known for ginger tea, which is also great when you have the flu. When you have an allergic reaction, dandelion tea is your best friend. Chai tea is a popular one lately. That’s actually not that crazy when you look at all the benefits it is said to offer in terms of the skin, cells, creativity, gut health and productivity to name a few. People often put milk in it as well, making it sort of the tea version of a cappuccino.
So you can already guess: there is a tea for almost everything! I can’t name them all unfortunately. However, when you have certain conditions, searching for a matching tea can give you just that little nudge towards health. I personally drink black with lemon in the morning, then continue with green tea and later in the afternoon I’ll switch to white. Because I have learned to physically react to rooibos tea in the evening, as you can read in my article on how to sleep better, I always finish my day with rooibos tea. I should also mention that although the taste can be very nice, I would not recommend using sweeteners. When you drink as much tea as I do, that sugar adds up quickly. Also, honey is better to put in tea when it has cooled down, since studies found that honey that gets warmed up might have toxins in them. This is obviously something to avoid. Colder honey is however a great option, especially when you’re feeling a little sick, due to the antioxidants.
Furthermore, also please keep in mind that although I really try to look for the best information, I am not a doctor. In addition, I only describe general findings of studies. Every body works differently, so please don’t just start drinking 20 cups a day. Too much is never good. You might have the hope of getting extraordinary results, but that won’t happen. It can actually be damaging, especially not when you are under special circumstances like allergies or a pregnancy. Tea is not a magic trick that will solve all your problems. Therefore, I urge you to please ask a doctor if you want to lose weight, have troubles with cholesterol or blood pressure what can help.
So what is your favorite tea (routine) and why? Did I miss anything or do you have any questions? Please leave it in the comments below! And if you liked this, please subscribe to my blog or follow me on Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter, so you’ll never have to miss a new post!
Lots of love,
LisaHome » Body » Food & recipes »
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