Did you know that tea is the most widely consumed drink in the world after water?
And for good reason! Depending on what kind of tea you’re drinking, there are many tea nutrients that are thought to help protect against various diseases and provide other health benefits.
So what are the different kinds of teas, and what are the healthiest teas?
Follow me and we’ll explore the nutrients you’ll gain from drinking a cup of tea!
What Is Tea?
While many people call any drink made from infusing plant matter in water tea, others are sticklers for the word tea only referring to drinks including the leaves of a specific evergreen shrub that originated in East Asia. This plant, called Camellia sinensis, has been grown for around 5000 years and is where you find the leaves to make green, black, white, oolong, and pu-erh teas.
Herbal teas, on the other hand, refer to drinks made from by steeping the fruit, leaves, roots, seeds, or fresh or dried flowers from a countless number of plants.
While some may prefer that we refer to herbal teas as tisanes or herbal infusions, it is more than common to refer to these drinks simply as herbal teas.
Tea Nutrients in Various Teas and Tisanes
Is drinking tea bad for you?
While some types of teas have been subject to more scientific studies than others, many types of teas and herbal infusions have been used for centuries in folk medicine around the world.
Whether you simply like to occasionally sip a cup of warm tea, or you’re looking to include drinking tea as a part of your daily routine, let’s take a look at the tea nutrients in different tea drinks.
#1 Green, Black, White, Oolong, and Pu-erh Teas
The difference between these types of teas is the amount of time the leaves are processed.
Polyphenols are the most abundant compound in tea, making up 30-40% of the leave’s composition.
It is thought that the polyphenols in tea, including epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), flavonoids, and other catechins, may protect against various diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, and obesity.
Teas made from Camellia sinensis also contains theophylline and theobromine in small amounts, both of which are stimulants.
Relatively high amounts of vitamins C, D, and K are found in Camellia sinensis tea, as well as B2 (also known as riboflavin.) Other tea nutrients you can find in a cup of hot tea are the minerals magnesium, calcium, zinc, iron, sodium, and nickel.
Some studies have shown that regularly drinking green tea can help reduce your risk of stroke or heart disease by lowering LDL cholesterol and triglycerides.
#2 Cascara Tea
Have you heard of this brewed beverage that is gaining popularity in this US?
Made from the dried skins of the fruit of the coffee plant, this drink doesn’t taste like coffee. Rather, it’s somewhat sweet, pleasant and tastes a little like cherries. This is why it’s also known as coffee cherry herbal tea.
While coffee is made from the seeds of the fruit, in modern coffee production the fruit and dried berries are often discarded as waste byproducts.
But for thousands of years, cultures existing where the coffee plant grows have brewed and enjoyed teas made from the fruit and berries.
With a quarter the caffeine of coffee, and higher in antioxidants than strawberries, blueberries, and pomegranate, the potential health effects of cascara are notable.
Cascara is also high in polyphenol compounds which are phytochemicals that are believed to play a role in preventing degenerative diseases and maintaining health and wellness.
If you’re trying to avoid sugary drinks that are detrimental to your health, learn more about the benefits of delicious cascara teas today!
#3 Chamomile Tea
Looking for something to promote relaxation and calm your nerves? Chamomile tea has long been used in folk medicine as a sleep aid. A study has shown that the sleep quality of elderly participants was significantly improved by the use of chamomile extract.
It’s also believed to have anti-inflammatory properties and ease the pain of menstrual cramps.
#4 Ginger Tea
Ginger tea, made from the rhizome of a flowering plant that originated in Southeast Asia, is believed to be anti-inflammatory and alleviates a variety of stomach ailments such as morning sickness, motion sickness, and nausea.
Used by many to improve food digestion and known for its warming effect due to its ability to increase blood circulation, ginger is referred to as a universal medicine in the Ayurvedic tradition.
Containing high levels of amino acids and vitamin C, as well as trace minerals like zinc, phosphorus, and calcium, drinking a cup of tea made with ginger provides many health benefits.
#5 Rooibos Tea
The leaves of a shrub originating from southern Africa have been used to make tea in South Africa for centuries. In recent years it’s gained popularity around the world.
Filled with antioxidants, which are believed to protect cells against damage from free radicals, some believe drinking rooibos tea can increase antioxidant levels in your body. However, some studies show that the antioxidants present in rooibos may not be efficiently absorbed in the body, so it’s unclear how beneficial this truly is.
Teas For Every Occasion
There are many different types of teas or herbal infusions to choose from depending on what benefits you’re looking for. If you’re looking for energy, heart health, digestive help, or stress relief, there’s a tea for you!
This is in no way an exhaustive list of all the types of teas you can brew, but rather a place to learn about some of the incredibly beneficial tea nutrients.
Did you like this article? Make sure to check out the rest of our blog for more informative articles!