Is tea beneficial for your health? If so, what are its benefits?
Tea is almost the world’s most consumed beverage, and all its kinds (white, black, oolong and green) originate from the same plant, nevertheless they differ in harvesting and processing. For the green tea, the freshly- picked leaves need to be immediately steamed or pan- fried to halt fermentation and oxidation.
White tea is made similarly but using the youngest and newest buds. Oolong and black tea leaves wither and then are crushed; black tea is fully fermented while oolong is partially fermented. Matcha tea is finely ground green tea, and when drinking it, the whole tea leaf is consumed not just the infusion; that is why it is considered nutritionally higher than green tea.
Actually, one cup of black tea contains about 25% of your daily manganese needs in addition to small amounts of folate, copper, magnesium and potassium, and generally tea is a good source of antioxidants. Green tea in particular is rich in antioxidants, which have beneficial anti- carcinogenic and anti- inflammatory properties. A recent study suggests that white and green tea have a lowering effect on stress levels, but white tea has a greater effect.
Tea is also believed to be beneficial in enhancing our brain’s cognitive functions and reducing the risk of dementia. A study published in 2006 revealed that green tea consumption is associated with reduced mortality especially from cardiovascular disease.
Furthermore, it is known that cancer rates tend to be lower in countries which have higher green tea consumption; a large- scale clinical study concluded that green tea drinkers are less likely to develop cancer. As a matter of fact, brewed tea is more useful than bottled tea because it has higher amounts of beneficial polyphenols.
However, some people should drink tea with caution like those who are sensitive to caffeine, as they are exposed to anxiety and insomnia when consuming tea.