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How healthy is your cup of Tea?

How healthy is your cup of Tea?
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Want to cool down in a hot summer month or warm yourself up in winters – Tea is an enticing brew.

Personally I love tea and that’s how I begin my day.

From centuries, people all over the world have been using various types and mixtures of tea not only for its essence and taste but also for remedial purposes. So you all must know that whenever you have a cold or a bad throat – what you need is just a cup of hot tea.

People in the East consider tea as a fundamental aspect to their good health. It has now come to the notice of researchers in West who are now trying to discover the health benefits associated with various types of teas.

Some studies reveal that tea reduces the risk of heart diseases and cancer. It also plays a vital role in reducing weight and maintaining the cholesterol levels. Katherine Tallmadge, MA, RD, LD, the spokeswoman of American Dietetic Association says, “There doesn’t seem to be a downside to tea. I think it’s a great alternative to coffee drinking. First, tea has less caffeine. It’s pretty well established that the compounds in tea – their flavonoids – are good for the heart and may reduce cancer.”

How are different types of Tea made?

There are different varieties of tea such as green tea, black tea, oolong tea, pu-erh tea, white tea and many more. But do you know that all these kinds of tea are produced from the same plant called Camellia sinensis.

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Sounds strange?

But it’s true.

The difference lies in the way the leaves of this plant are processed. It is the way of processing that gives the leaves of same plant, a distinctive flavor and color.

Camellia sinensis tea leaves

For instance, green tea is prepared when the plant leaves are partly withered. These party withered leaves are plucked and then heated to almost 200 degree Celsius. They are then rolled up to give them a proper shape and heated again. On the other hand, in preparing black tea, the leaves after being withered are not heated. They are heated only once after being rolled up.

So a different process gives a different flavor!

Now let’s have a look at how these different kinds of tea not only quench our thirst but also improve our health.

Healthy Teas you should drink

1. Green Tea

Green tea is the most popular and the healthiest brew on the planet. The withered leaves are dried and heated to prepare this tea. It contains around 25 milligrams of caffeine per cup.

green-tea healthy

Popular types: Sencha, dragon well, and gunpowder

Benefits:

  • It is rich in polyphenols like flavonoids and catechins, which are powerful antioxidants and prevent cancer and heart diseases.
  • If you consume a cup of green tea daily, it can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease by almost 10 percent.
  • The presence of L-theanine and the small amount of caffeine improves the functioning of brain and makes you smarter.
  • Boosts metabolism and burns extra fat in the body thus helping in weight-loss.
  • It has a defending effect on neurons and thus reduces the risk of both Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s( common neurodegenerative disorders).
  • Lowers risk of Type II diabetes

2. Oolong Tea

Sometimes referred to as “Black Dragon” tea, it was greatly admired by Buddhist monks. It is quite similar to black tea but is fermented for a short time. One cup of oolong tea contains 30 milligrams of caffeine.

Oolong tea healthy

Popular types: Wu-Yi, Red Robe, and cassia

Benefits:

  • It boosts metabolism and help in losing weight. “Oolong activates an enzyme responsible for dissolving triglycerides, the form of dietary fat that’s stored in fat cells,” says Baer.
  • It is slightly antiseptic and aids in digestion.
  • The high amounts of antioxidants present in it can prevent hair loss.
  • It contains niacin, which helps in detoxifying the body.
  • Stabilizes the blood sugar and prevents tooth decay.
  • Prevents cellular damage and increase immunity.

 3. White Tea

 It is the nature’s greatest gift.  It has a mild flavor because the young leaves are used to prepare it. The amount of caffeine present in a cup is about 15 milligrams.

white tea healthy

Popular types: Silver needle and white peony

Benefits:

  • It contains the highest antioxidant properties and its ultimate power lies in preventing disease and disorder.
  • The antioxidants present in it give a healthy and a youthful skin. It also protects your skin from harmful UV rays.
  • The presence of polyphenols prevents the growth of bacteria which causes plaque.
  • Just like green tea, it also helps in preventing cancer like lung cancer.

 4. Black Tea

It is the most common variety and accounts for about 75 percent of world-wide tea consumption. It is also processed from the leaves of Camellia sinensis plant which after fermenting are dried and crushed. It has the highest amount of caffeine. A cup of black tea contains about 40 milligrams.

Black Tea healthy

Popular types: Keemun, Darjeeling, and chai

Benefits:

  • It contains high amounts of antioxidants such as theaflavins and thearubigins, which lowers cholesterol level. According to the studies, three or more cups of black tea in a day reduce the risk of stroke by 21%.
  • It contains polyphenols which block DNA damage caused by tobacco or other toxic chemicals.
  • A research revealed that consumption of black tea on a regular basis reduces around 70% chance of developing type 2 diabetes.
  • It improves the immunity levels and also acts as a stress buster.

5. Herbal Tea

Theoretically, herbal teas are not teas. They are actually a combination of dried fruits, flowers, and herbs. They do not contain caffeine.

herbal-tea healthy

Popular types: Chamomile, echinacea, cinnamon

Benefits:

  • Laden with many health benefits, chamomile tea decreases the growth of cancer cells. It eases pain and gives a sound sleep.
  • Cinnamon tea is simple to make and helps fighting viruses and maintaining blood sugar. It also helps in reducing weight and gives relief from menstrual cramps. Blended with other, this tea is a powerhouse.
  • Ginger tea is perfect when you have a cold. It also stops nausea, reduces the pain of arthritis and rheumatism and lowers cholesterol.
  • Feeling stressed? A cup of peppermint tea can give you peace at mind. It provides relief from severe cold and a stuffy nose.

A word of advice

Just like any other natural substance, there are certain components I the tea that can have harmful effects. The FDA, therefore has warned people to avoid the consumption of teas that contain ingredients like comfrey, ephedra, lobelia, willow bark, chaparral and germander.

To sum up:

People often criticized my choice of caffeinated drink such as tea. No doubt over-indulging can have a bad effect but having an extra cup of tea is not as bad as it seemed to be.

So ditch your soda and enjoy healthy teas!

 

Comments (25)

  • Hi Sonal,

    A great explanation of the different styles of tea. I am not supposed to drink black tea because of a problem with the enzyme that breaks down histamine but I was told that I could drink a couple of mugs of green tea a day. I have tried a lot of green teas over the years and found a lot of the ones you get in supermarkets are quite tasteless. No wonder so there are so many green teas with fruit flavors! I don’t like those though as the fruit cuts the flavor of the the tea which I like if it’s a good one. My favorite green tea at the moment is an organic loose leaf Dragon Well. I find I can manage a few mugs of that over a day without a histamine problem.

    • Author

      Hi Sandy

      Am glad that you liked the post. There are different styles of tea. One can choose according to one’s taste and preferences.

      There are different qualities of tea available in supermarkets. Just go for the best quality and taste!

      I personally like both black and green tea. Well am a tea addict and all my friends know about it 🙂

      Keep writing in

      Have a nice day!

  • Hi Sonal,

    Enjoyed this informative post. I used to start my day with a big cuppa green & black tea. A habit I’ve given over to coffee since I moved to another state in May of this year.

    Your post detailing the healthy properties of tea has reminded me why I need to get back to a daily cup of tea.
    Thanks,
    Edward
    Edward Thorpe recently posted…10 Important Health Care Breakthroughs For 2015My Profile

    • Author

      Hi Edward

      Thanks for your feedback. my day always begins with a cup of tea.

      True, drinking tea has many health benefits.

      Keep writing in

      Have a nice day!

  • Hi Sonal Talwar, I begin my day with tea. whenever I feel stress or tension it works for me. There are different types of flavour and all are good. Thanks for sharing
    sazia kazias recently posted…Diabetes Diet-Avoid White sugar to control DiabetesMy Profile

    • Author

      Hi Sazia

      Bingo! Even I begin my day with a cup of tea. It works fro me very well when I have a headache.

      Keep writing in

      Have a nice day!

  • Hi Sonal,
    Wonderful write up on the different types of tea.
    I will start with Oolong or Black Dragon tea first
    I liked that it boost metabolism and helps in losing weight
    and aids digestion and stabilizes blood sugar.

    Thanks very much for this very informative post.
    Kathryn Maclean recently posted…Make 2016 Your Best Year Ever with a Membership siteMy Profile

    • Author

      Hi Kathryn

      Glad that you liked the post. I love green tea and the herbal tea.

      In winters I prefer the masala tea.

      Keep writing in

      Have a nice day!

  • Hi Sonal ,
    tea is something healthy,
    especially the green tea I think does not harm at all.
    Some may not be able to drink a lot of black tea, but
    in moderation I think it is good. Herbal tea is used in
    traditional medicine since ancient times and it really
    helps, dependent on the conditions. There is for every
    disease a herb and it works, maybe not right away like
    a pill which may stop the pain or conditions, but has side
    effects. But Herbs help. I alway collect herbs to make my own tea for
    treatment and use them also for food and spices.
    Unfortunately, not many know how to use them anymore.
    You did a good job
    Thank you
    Erika
    Erika Mohssen-Beyk recently posted…67 Timeless Positive Affirmations to Ignite Your PowerMy Profile

  • Hi Sonal,

    I landed up here from the comment you left in my blog and the interesting thing is I just finished drinking a cup of tea before I start reading this post. I am a tea lover right from my college days and used to drink at least three to four in a day.

    Regarding the choices, I don’t have much preference for any particular type of tea, but I like the taste of green tea better than others. Also, I used to take the herbal tea at times and that is also one of my favourites.

    Thanks for sharing this informative post.

    Have a great day.

    Reji Stephenson
    Reji Stephenson recently posted…Train yourself to be a better writer with Writers Bureau coursesMy Profile

    • Author

      Hi Reji

      I also love tea, infact am a tea addict. I developed the habit of drinking tea in my college days.

      Even today I drink 5 cups in a day. I like green tea and the herbal tea. Green tea tastes good and has many health benefits.

      Keep writing in.

      Have a nice day!

  • Hi Sonal Mam
    I never knew about these kind of TEA.
    Thanks but I know only black tea which is made daily by my mom. 🙂
    I would like to try healthy one’s you’ve mentioned here. 😛
    thanks
    have a nice day mam
    Vashishtha Kapoor recently posted…How to improve a PC’s performance in Different WaysMy Profile

    • Author

      Hi Vashishtha

      Yes do try these varieties. You will definitely like them.

      Thanks for writing in.

      Have a nice day!

  • Hi Sonal,

    How interesting that all the different teas come from the same plant. I’m amazed.

    I must admit though, my favorite morning beverage is coffee. In fact, I do it several times during the day. I know it’s supposed to be bad for lots of things, but I’m really hooked on my coffee.

    I drink tea especially if I’m sick, like a cold or sore throat or something. Then I go to the health food store and they point out which teas are good for what. Of course, many of those herbal teas now are named for the symptom or remedy they’re targeting, so for sore throats, there’s a tea called “Throat Coat” etc. That’s kind of like “medicinal teas for dummies” I guess.. hehe

    -Donna
    Donna Merrill recently posted…Have You Reached Your 2015 Goals?My Profile

    • Author

      Hi Donna

      Well it was a surprise to me as well. Earlier I also did not know that all teas are made from the same plant. The only difference is in the preparation.

      I like coffee but I live tea. Without it I cannot imagine my day.

      Different types of teas serve different purposes. No doubt it gives a great relief when having cold or sore throat.

      Keep writing in.

      Have a nice day!

  • Hello Sonal,
    Thank you for and informative post. I love my tea especially green tea. I did come across Oolong tea last week but didn’t buy it. But looking at the benefits mentioned I’ll have to try it.

    Here in Australia, most are coffee lovers. I’ve tried coffee a few times but it hardly does anything for me. Whereas tea makes me feel relaxed 🙂

    Wish you a great week.
    Hema
    Hema Unnoop recently posted…25 Ways to Make Positive Thinking Work For YouMy Profile

    • Author

      Hi Hema

      Great to see you!

      I also love green tea. Infact am so much addicted to tea that I cannot imagine my day without it. My day not only begins with tea but also ends with tea.

      Tea makes me feel relaxed and works as a stress buster.

      Keep writing in.

      Have a nice day!

  • Hi, Sonal,
    I am a tea drinker all my life because the only thing we drank when we grew up in Hong Kong.

    The benefit of tea is well documented for relaxation and health. I am glad you also pointed out some of the components are very harmful.

    I agree with you, the herbal tea can’t be treated as ordinary tea. In fact , they are better put into a section of medicine.
    Thanks for your post!

    Happy Holidays!
    stellachiu recently posted…What Kind of Giving can delete your Scarcity Mentality around Money?My Profile

    • Author

      Hi Stella

      Even I am a tea drinker.

      Yes apart from the health benefits, the tea has certain chemicals which are harmful. One should take care to avoid such teas.

      Herbal teas are really helpful. They have many medicinal properties.

      Keep writing in.

      Have a nice day!

  • Hi Sonal. Thanks for this great post. btw I absolutely adore cinnamon, as a tea and as a spice. I even add some cinnamon spice to cup of tea to make it taste better…

    • Author

      Hi Helen

      Thanks for visiting my blog and sharing your feedback. Cinnamon is my favorite as well.

      Have a nice day!

  • Hi,
    Sonal
    Very informative post, I never knew about these types of tea. I know only milk and lemon tea. I begin my day with milk tea it is not healthy but tastes great in taste.
    I would like to try these healthy tea mentioned here.
    Hibiscus Flower Tea is also good for health. Hibiscus tea made from dried hibiscus flower. It helps to decrease cholesterol, hypertension and blood pressure.

    Thanks for your useful post.
    Praveen Verma recently posted…Health Benefits of AsparagusMy Profile

    • Author

      Hi Praveen

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your feedback. Glad that you liked the post.

      Keep writing in

      Have a nice day!

Comments are closed.