Some say, that next to water, tea is the most widely consumed drink in the WORLD! And believe me, I’m definitely on that bandwagon! As you may already know from some of my previous posts, I’m OBSESSED with tea! So, I did some research and found some promising benefits related to drinking tea.
Flavonoids are polyphenolic compounds that can be found in tea, cocoa, fruits, vegetables, and wine. Flavonoids contribute to the taste and color of these products and are HIGHLY responsible for upholding some normal, healthy body functions.
Many flavonoids are shown to have antioxidative activity (see An Antioxidant a day, Keeps the Free Radical Away for more information on antioxidants), free-radical scavenging capability, coronary heart disease prevention, and anticancer activity. Some flavonoids even exhibit potential for anti-human immunodeficiency virus functions. Furthermore, other studies show that teas may also encourage weight loss, lower bad (LDL) cholesterol, and bring about mental alertness (alertness is however due to the caffeine and theanine in tea).
Black, green, white, oolong, and pu-erh tea are all full of natural sources of flavonoids, providing 100 – 300 milligrams of total flavonoids per 240 milliliter serving. In addition, the majority of flavonoids are infused from the tealeaves to the brewed tea after about 4 minutes of brewing.
Now, remember the more processed the tealeaf the less flavonoid concentration. Oolong and black teas are oxidized or fermented so they tend to have lower concentrations of flavonoids than green tea, which are steamed. However, oolong and black teas still have great antioxidizing potential.
The following list of teas and benefits were found on WebMD:
Green Tea: is made with steamed tealeaves and has a high concentration of flavonoids. Antioxidants interfere with many cancers; prevent clogging of the arteries, burn fat, reduce risk of stroke, and improve LDL cholesterol levels.
Black Tea: is made with fermented tealeaves and has the highest caffeine concentration compared to other teas. Black tea can protect lungs from cigarette smoke and reduce risk of stroke.
White Tea: is uncured and unfermented and studies show white tea has anticancer properties.
Oolong Tea: animals given antioxidants from oolong tea were said to have lower LDL cholesterol levels.
Pu-erh Tea: (considered a black tea) is made from fermented and aged leaves that are pressed into cakes.
In conclusion, my mantra for this blog is not only “know what you’re putting in your mouth,” it’s also … “too much of one thing is never good for you!” Something I personally need to work on! Remember the quote from Paracelsus; “All substances are poisons; there is none which is not a poison. The right dose differentiates a poison and a remedy.” It is important to keep your diet balanced because where there is a benefit there is also may also be a cost…. For example, teas also have oxalates… more on this next time, see you tomorrow!
- You’re Invited to the Tea Party! (toxicfoodie.org)
- Tea: Differences between White, Green and Black [Ketan JOSHI] (ecademy.com)