Have you ever wondered what the health benefits of tea are? Well, you have come to the right place!
Tea is a fantastic drink which anyone can enjoy. Especially during the winter, a nice hot cup of tea can do wonders. But even in summer, a nice cup of tea is perfect to wake you up in the mornings, especially if you are not a big fan of coffee. And remember that tea is a beverage which you can enjoy both hot and cold!
Tea is also a very broad word, as there are hundreds of different types of tea. Some will boost your energy, some will help you fall asleep and others will make sure you get a great start in the morning! Some taste better hot and others cold.
This article will tell you everything you need to know about tea. We will start off with a brief history of tea, and then get into the most common teas and their health benefits. You will read about the health benefits of black tea, as well as of green tea. The last part of the article will discuss the benefits of tea for your sleep, since we regard sleep as one of the most important aspects of living a healthy life.
A brief history of tea
The history of tea is a long and complicated one. This is because this unique beverage has crossed multiple cultures over hundreds and thousands of years. However, we will make sure to give you all the most important information about how this marvelous drink has come about.
The most likely place where it is originated is in southwest China. During the Shang dynasty, tea was considered a medical drink. In fact, one of the earliest records of tea drinking goes all the way back to 3rd century AD. This was found in a medical text written by a Chinese doctor named Hua Tuo.
There is also a Chinese legend, where the legendary Emperor of China named Shennong played the main role. He is also credited to be the inventor of Chinese medicine, as well as agriculture. It was custom to drink boiled water at the time since they already understood that water needed to be purified before drinking. While he was drinking a cup of boiled water, a couple of leaves fell into his cup from a nearby tree. This, in turn, changed the color of the water. After drinking the first sip, the Emperor was very surprised to find the new flavor and healthy properties.
Many centuries later, Portuguese priests were introduced to tea. This occurred in China during the 16th century from then on, tea began to spread across the globe. As we all know, the British are huge fans of tea. However, tea had only become popular there during the 17th century. What the British can be credited for, however, is the introduction of the production of tea. At the time, it was both due to their love for tea, but also in order to be able to compete with the Chinese monopoly of tea. This was highly important during the time where the British were occupying India!
General health benefits of tea
Let's have a look at some general health benefits of tea before getting into the most popular types. This is because some benefits are unique to different sorts of tea. However, there are some which near to every single type of tea share!
Antioxidants basically make sure that your body doesn’t “rust”. They help you stay young and protect you from external damage. A great example of this would be pollution. The best types of tea to drink if you are looking for antioxidants is white, black and green tea!
2. Less caffeine
Although many of us love caffeine in the mornings, it is unfortunately still not as healthy as many may think. This is especially true if you drink a lot of it! In fact, herbal blends of tea have no caffeine at all. Traditional teas, however, have significantly less than 50% of caffeine. In comparison, coffee has at least 50%. In turn, you are able to drink tea without the unwanted negative effects on the nervous system.
Are you trying to switch from coffee to tea? No problem! We recommend trying chicory root tea. It has a similar taste like coffee and is known to decrease stress levels. In addition, it is even a prebiotic, which means that it is healthy for you as well! Can it get any better?
3. Lower risk of heart disease
This is the health effect which has the strongest evidence, according to a clinical nutrition manager at Magee-Women’s Hospital. In fact, the study found that there is nearly a 20% decrease in the risk of a heart attack. In addition, there is also a 35% decrease in risk of a stroke for those who drink between one and three cups of green tea per day.
Don't feel like going to the bathroom as much? Drinking lots of tea may have that effect. However, if you simply drink 1 cup of matcha tea a day you will have a similar effect as a couple of cups of green tea.
4. Weight loss
Although research here is not as strong, there were some studies which indicate weight loss for those who drink lots of tea. Many weight loss pills even contain tea for this reason. Either way, it can't hurt to drink tea daily, can it?
Very recent studies have shown that tea is linked to the prevention of bone loss. In fact, the tea type called Moringa is known for its medical properties. The plant which originates from South East Asia is now becoming a very popular superfood. It has iron, Vitamin K, and Vitamin A. Furthermore, it even has more calcium than milk!
6. Keep smiling!
Well, yes, tea may add to your happiness if you are a huge fan. However, what we mean here is slightly different. Japanese researchers have found that tea has an effect on tooth loss. This is because it changes the pH in your mouth, which also helps to prevent cavities. Keep smiling then!
7. Your immune system will thank you for it
Feel like you need a boost to your immune system? Have a cup of tea! The herbal drink has shown to help your body reach the immune cell targets much faster. If you are looking to do so, have a cup of tulsi of holy basil tea. They have both been used for centuries by natural healers. This is because they have antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties.
8. It helps soothe the digestive system
Having trouble with your stomach? Herbal teas are great here if your tummy is grumbling more than it should. Especially chamomile tea is great here (and it has many other benefits, but we will get to that later!). Ginger teas have also proven to calm down nausea. If you are having bad stomach issues, only make sure to not drink too strong tea!
9. Ready for the best part?
Get ready ladies and gentlemen. Tea, if unadulterated, is completely free of calories. Yes, that means you can drink as much as you want, when you want it! That will have no effect whatsoever on your weight (unless you mean possibly losing weight).
In fact, it has been proven to be the number one no-calorie alternative to water. The only difference here is that you capture additional health benefits, along with some great flavors! Hot or cold, tea is truly a fantastic drink!
Now that we have had a look at the general health benefits of tea, let’s have a look at some of the most popular teas. After that, we will have a look at different teas which can help you sleep!
Health benefits of green tea
There are many health benefits of green tea. In fact, too many to get into detail with everyone. Let’s have a look at the best health benefits of green tea!
1. Bioactive compounds
This is one of the greatest health benefits of green tea. Green tea is full of antioxidants which are beneficial to your overall health and wellbeing. Although we have mentioned this before, we wanted to highlight it here once more. This is because green tea has the most antioxidants of all teas!
2. Brain function
Because green tea contains less caffeine than coffee, it has a positive effect on your brain function. This is because it has enough caffeine for you to feel more awake. In addition, it also contains an amino acid called L-theanine, which has proven to improve brain function when combined with caffeine.
Green tea is great for your metabolism as it functions as a booster. It also increases your fat burning (at least for a short period of time). However, the latter is something which has been shown to be inconclusive.
4. Lower risk of old age diseases
The herbal brew has also shown to have protective bioactive compounds. They will reduce the risk of Parkinson’s disease, as well as Alzheimer’s. They are the two most common brain disorders that come with age.
Here is another one of the great health benefits of green tea. Green tea has also shown to cause mild reductions in your blood sugar level. In addition, it also lowers the risk of you ever getting type 2 diabetes in the first place!
Health benefits of black tea
Similar situation here: we won’t get to all of the health benefits of black tea, but we will highlight the most important health benefits of black tea!
1. Oral health
Studies have shown that drinking a lot of black tea has a positive effect on plaque formation. Black tea restricts the growth of bacteria as well, which in turn stops cavities and tooth decays! One of the best health benefits of black tea!
2. Stress relief
Black tea has shown to have relaxing benefits. It helps you slow down after a long day, and also helps you to concentrate better. In fact, drinking black tea has shown to decrease the amount of cortisol on your system. Cortisol is the stress hormone!
Tea for sleep
A great benefit for your health is that some teas can help you with your sleep. Great examples are both banana and chamomile tea for sleep. But what do they do exactly and why do they help you with your sleep?
Well, banana tea for sleep is great as bananas themselves are a great way to get healthy sleep. The high amounts of potassium and magnesium found in the banana help prevent sleep disturbances and help relax the muscles.
Talking about banana - we have a great article talking about why the banana is great for your sleep. If you are interested, we highly recommend giving this article of ours a read.
If you want to make a banana tea, you have two different options! You can either purchase some from the supermarket or simply boil them yourself. We recommend boiling them yourself, as the peal most of the good stuff in it!
Chamomile tea for sleep is also great! If you have a cup about 30 minutes before going to bed, you will definitely feel the difference! This is because chamomile tea has proven to decrease your stress and anxiety levels. Chamomile tea is especially great for those of you who have had a hard day. Give it a try and we assure you will not regret it!
Vita Talalay and tea for sleep
Apart from having a cup of nice chamomile or banana tea in the evening, you should also make sure that you are sleeping on the right mattress. This is where Vita Talalay latex comes in.
Vita Talalay latex mattresses are the healthy choice. This is because they are made of pure natural ingredients and offer many health benefits. Sleeping on a Vita Talalay latex mattress, latex topper or latex pillow will make sure that you always wake up refreshed. This way you will be ready for life’s daily challenges.
If you are interested in finding out more about the health benefits of Vita Talalay latex, simply click here.
At Vita Talalay, we don’t say “sleep well” anymore. We say, “sleep healthy”.