Tea is the most commonly consumed beverage in the world, second after water and there are many documented health benefits of drinking the many available varieties of tea. There are many types of tea which can be consumed today including, black, white, green, red, oolong, peppermint and herbal teas. These studies have found that some teas may help with cancer (through high levels of antioxidants), heart disease, diabetes, assist in weight loss, lower cholesterol levels, lower stress hormone levels, help fight cavities and reduce plaque, keep your hydration levels up, aid in digestion, make you more alert and aware and can have antimicrobial qualities. Let’s explore the different varieties and their many health benefits.
Black tea, the most popular in the western world is either consumed with or without milk and sugar. Black tea is made with fermented tea leaves and has the highest caffeine content and high in polyphenols and flavonoids.
Green tea is very popular in the western world and increasing in popularity in the western world. It is made with steamed tea leaves, and it is thought that the antioxidants in green tea may inhibit with bladder, breast, lung, stomach, pancreatic, and colorectal cancers. Its other benefits are to improve cholesterol levels, reduce the risk of strokes and neurological diseases, detoxify your body, help stimulate the metabolism and lose weight.
White tea is similar to green tea, as it is unfermented and has a high antioxidant value. It therefore has similar properties as green tea, like helping with some cancers, heart disease, anti-aging and boosting your immune system. It is rarer and more expensive than the above 2 varieties.
Herbal teas are usually made from herbs, fruits, seeds or plant roots and generally have a lower concentration of antioxidants when compared to green, white, and black teas. There are many varieties of herbal teas which all have varying health benefits. Some of the main ones include Echinacea tea which is great for oral issues and cold and flu symptoms. Chamomile tea is best for stress relief and relaxation, also used to help alleviate digestive problems and inflammation. Ginger tea is excellent for circulation, stomach aches and nausea (suitable for pregnant women). Peppermint tea is usually recommended for nausea and vomiting, IBS, stress relief and digestion problems. Red tea (or rooibos) is derived from a South African herb and is high in antioxidant properties.
Overall, there are many benefits to this underrated drink. So next time you go to have a warm cup of tea, think about the wonderful things you are doing to your body and how many amazing benefits it offers.