5 Ways Drinking Tea Improves Your Health
Who doesn’t enjoy a good cuppa now and again? I’m not a coffee drinker, so I get my daily caffeine fix from drinking tea. Fewer things make my heart happier than a big mug of chai tea, a good book, and a fluffy cat napping on my lap.
I often share my love of tea with others. An assortment of teas makes a fun holiday gift for the tea lover in your family (or the person who has everything).
Gifting with purpose is a priority for me, so I did some research and discovered teas that offer more than a tickle to the taste buds. Some teas offer incredible health benefits. If you’re keen to learn more, here are five creative ideas for people on your holiday shopping list.
#1 – Tea can improve concentration
Do you ever have difficulty focusing on the task at hand? Believe it or not, becoming more easily distracted isn’t just a problem for children. The older we get, the harder it can be to concentrate on anything – even preferred activities.
Our cognitive abilities may diminish naturally with age, but that doesn’t mean we’re powerless to regain some of our brain power. One of the ways you can fight cognitive decline is by drinking a cup of tea daily. But not just any tea will do. The best tea for boosting brain power is matcha.
Matcha tea is chock full of flavonoids and L-theanine, which are known to boost the brain’s alpha frequency band. Healthy alpha frequency bands produce between 8 and 12(Hz), which helps with mental coordination.
So, why not combine a tin of matcha teabags with a paperback book of crossword puzzles? It could be a perfect gift for people who like a good challenge.
Best tea for boosting brain power: Matcha
#2 – Tea can lower your risk for diabetes
If you like to drink tea – at least 4 cups a day – then you’re getting the benefit of lowering your risk for developing Type 2 diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes interferes with the way your body regulates and processes sugar as fuel. You end up with too much sugar circulating through your bloodstream, which can damage your circulatory, immune, and nervous systems.
A group of Chinese researchers at the European Association for the Study of Diabetes linked a 17% decrease in risk for developing type 2 diabetes among people who drank at least 4 cups of tea daily. Talk about a clever gift for anyone with pre-diabetes or just a commitment to their own good health!
Best teas for regulating insulin: Black tea, green tea, oolong tea
#3 – Tea can reduce inflammation
Nearly 2.1 million of Americans suffer from chronic inflammation that can make daily life more difficult. Inflammation can manifest as arthritis and joint conditions that limit mobility and cause constant, dull pain. Some autoimmune diseases – irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), lupus, and multiple sclerosis – also cause systemic inflammation.
Drinking tea daily can help control inflammation in your body. Some teas work better than others for addressing inflammation and the pain it causes because they have the most anti-inflammatory properties.
Turmeric tea is a top choice. The active ingredient in turmeric – curcumin – provides proven relief from inflammation and pain. It’s a favorite choice among people suffering from osteoarthritis because it reduces pain and increases mobility. Anyone like that on your gift list?
Best tea for combatting inflammation: turmeric
#4 – Tea can decrease your risk for heart disease
Some studies have supported the notion that tea protects heart health. According to research published in the European Journal of Preventative Cardiology, even just one cup of tea a day can keep heart disease at bay.
Researchers followed two cohorts for 7.3 years: a group of people who drank tea at least 3 times weekly, and another group that didn’t drink tea. Regular tea drinkers were:
- 20% less likely to develop heart disease and stroke.
- 22% less likely to die from heart disease and stroke.
- 15% less likely to die of other causes.
The antioxidant power of the polyphenols found in black and green tea is believed to be the reason for these astonishing results. Help encourage heart health with a gift assortment of cardio-protective teas.
Best teas for protecting your heart: black tea, green tea, white tea
#5 – Tea can help control your waistline
I don’t need a delicious way to control my waistline, said no one, ever. Americans can be obsessed with keeping their waistlines trim, trying any fad diet or program. What if you didn’t have to go to such extremes to control your weight? Drinking just 2 cups of green tea daily can reduce cravings and encourage your metabolism to work more efficiently.
Sounds pretty good, eh? Here’s the catch: you only get the benefits if you don’t add sugar or milk to your green tea. If the trademark bitterness of green tea makes you turn your nose up at the very idea, you can find green teas that are naturally flavored to take that edge off.
Another option is to make a pot of hot green tea or a pitcher of cold green tea—and add 1 peppermint tea bag. The peppermint lends extra health benefits and evens out the bitter taste of green tea. Of course, every body shape is uniquely beautiful, so simply consider this a Body Beautiful Brew.
Best tea for slimming down: Green tea
Shari Berg is a researcher, frequent blogger, feature writer, and author of Wars End with Me.
- Aging Brains and Distractions. cbc.ca. Accessed November 4, 2022.
- Brain Wave Frequencies: DELTA (0.1 to 3.5Hz).com. Accessed November 4, 2022.
- Chronic inflammation. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Accessed November 4, 2022.
- Consumption of Green Tea Causes Rapid Increase in Plasma Antioxidant Power in Humans. tandfonline.com. Accessed November 4, 2022.
- Curcumin: A Review of Its Effects on Human Health. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov. Accessed November 4, 2022.
- L-theanine, a natural constituent in tea, and its effect on mental state. apjcn.nhri.org. Accessed November 4, 2022.
- National Health Interview Survey. cdc.gov. Accessed November 4, 2022.
- Polyphenol. en.wikipedia.org. Accessed November 4, 2022.
- Tea consumption and the risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality: The China-PAR project. journals.sagepub.com. Accessed November 4, 2022.
- Type 2 diabetes. mayoclinic.org. Accessed November 4, 2022.