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Tea Health Benefits

Why You Should Start Drinking Tea Now

May 22, 2017

The ceremony of tea evokes a grey-haired British grandmother with Victorian fine silver teapots; porcelain cups hand-painted with violets; Emily Post place settings on rustic William and Mary style antique chestnut dining tables; doilies on every available surface; dusty heirlooms and curio cabinets – you get the picture. And, certainly, the British have owned the domain of tea—originally discovered by China—since the 1600s and the advent of the East India Company.

And yet tea is not just for elderly grandmothers or the British. The beverage appeals to all generations and cultures. What’s more, the beverage provides certain health benefits as we age. These can only be fully taken advantage of by creating your tea drinking habit sooner rather than later. Here’s our guide to getting the most from your tea. The fountain of youth may very well be flowing with tea.

Detoxification

In the article, “Anti-Aging Research Brief” published by the Academy of Anti-Aging, tea is brimming with antioxidant polyphenols called catechins, flavonols, theaflavins and thearubigins. Antioxidants ultimately help prevent cancerous cells from forming, repair damage to cells and to protect blood vessel walls from free radicals. The article cites a study from King’s College in London that compared a group of black tea drinkers with a group of coffee drinkers. Scientists studied the health of both groups after one year, and found “that the tea drinkers’ risk of a heart attack approached half of the non-tea drinkers.” The scientists speculated “that tea’s beneficial cardio effects are due to the beverage’s large amounts of flavonoids.”

So what teas contain the highest levels of antioxidants? Many brands you can purchase at large chain grocery stores contain high levels of antioxidants, including Celestial Seasonings Green Tea, with 217 milligrams (mg) of antioxidants, Lipton Green Tea (201 mg), Bigelow Darjeeling Blend (164 mg). Surprisingly, a few brands of popular teas have absolutely no antioxidant content, including Lipton Lemon Iced Tea and Snapple Peach Iced Tea.

Prevent Cancer

Studies have shown that caffeine and consuming two cups of coffee can “harden a person’s arteries for several hours afterwards. This puts extra pressure on the heart, thus increasing the risk of heart attack or stroke.” Further, “it is evident today that many of our cancers are related to a dominance of estrogen. In a world flooded with estrogen and estrogen-like compounds, it is important for our bodies to have as low of an estrogen load as possible.” So drinking more than two cups of coffee can increase estrogen and lead to breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men. Reducing caffeine is integral to cancer prevention, and replacing coffee with tea can easily half caffeine consumption and decrease the risk of cancer.

Blood Sugar Regulation

Teas, especially the variety of green tea known as matcha, can help regulate blood sugar. Matcha is actually powdered green tea leaves prepared with boiled water and a bamboo whisk, and is known to stabilize metabolism for those with hypo- or hyperglycemic maladies. Taking an active role in regulating blood sugar at a younger age can help prevent complications down the road.

Weight Loss

An ingredient in matcha tea, EGCG, boosts metabolism. While matcha has a high level of caffeine and may contribute to higher estrogen levels, which will help you burn fat and lose weight.

Tea Culture

How Tea Will Fulfill Your New Year’s Resolutions

December 27, 2016

As the New Year approaches, it’s time to set goals for 2017. There are a number of prevalent resolutions made by people from coast to coast and farm to city, like “lose weight” and “save money.” Who doesn’t want to get healthier and pad her wallet? We’re here to let you in on a secret weapon to meet your resolutions: tea. That’s right, our favorite beverage is often a gateway to fulfilling your deepest desires. Here’s how choosing tea will help you achieve five resolutions you’ve probably made:

1) Lose Weight

weight loss

Whether you want to shed those pesky last few pounds or half your body weight, tea is a smart beverage choice. Calorie-free and tasty, it’s a great alternative to soda and juice that doesn’t sacrifice flavor. Plus, there are certain tees that promote weight loss. Kelly Choi explores how certain teas can help you slim down in her book The 7-Day Flat-Belly Tea Cleanse, co-authored by the editors of Eat This, Not That. The book explains that green tea burns off fat cells, oolong tea boosts your metabolism, white tea prevents fat calls from forming in the first place, rooibos tea reduces stress hormones that cause hunger and fat storage, and mint tea can suppress your appetite. After a healthy dinner, try ending your day with a cup of mint tea. It tastes great and may ward off your desire for the midnight snack you really don’t need. The verdict is in: if the pounds need to go, tea should be coming right up.

2) Be Healthy

living healthy

Beyond its ability to support weight loss, tea delivers a host of exciting health benefits, some of which we wrote about already. But here’s a few more per Today: Drinking tea may promote strong bones and reduce your risk for heart attack or stroke, it doesn’t erode your tooth enamel like other beverages do, and it can nix those annoying IBS symptoms. The New York Times also linked drinking tea with lower rates of depression, reporting that a 2015 study found that “for every three cups of tea consumed per day, the relative risk of depression decreased 37 percent.” The National Cancer Institute also reports that green tea may fight cancer, as its properties have been shown to “inhibit tumor cell proliferation and induce apoptosis in laboratory and animal studies.”

3) Spend more time with friends and family

tea party

Looking to nurture your relationships this year? There’s no simpler way to do so than by sharing a cup of tea. Invite a friend over for a one-on-one tea party, check out a cool tea parlor with your mom, surprise your bestie with a tea-infused baked good, or throw a party and serve a signature tea-based cocktail or mocktail. No matter who you want to get closer to, tea is a great way to start.

4) Save Moneypiggy bank

Small, everyday purchases can really add up. That 4-dollar cappuccino you order every morning? By the end of the year, you’ve spent almost $1500 to start your day. If you like getting your morning beverage on the go but you’re trying to save dough, opt for a simple tea bag in hot water. Your bank account will thank you!

5) Try New Things

adventurous

It’s an exciting time in the culinary world. Never have we seen more global mashups and ethnic flavors available everywhere from fast food restaurants to upscale eateries. And tea is a great place to try something new. Not sure if you’ll like a new flavor? Don’t gamble an entire entre seasoned with it; order a cup of tea infused with the new taste instead and go from there. From teas that taste like dessert to teas that will introduce you to new parts of the world, the flavors abound. Say yes to adventure in 2017, and start by brewing something new.