Tea

GUEST POST: Why you should drink tea over coffee… a few benefits.

Ever since tea was discovered by the Chinese back in 2000 BC, it has been considered to be the most widely consumed beverage next to water.

To some, drinking coffee is more an addiction than simply a drink, and this is perhaps one of the reasons why tea is considered a better alternative over coffee.

That said, in the U.S., coffee is the king of beverages. Various research reveals that coffee is the number one resource of antioxidants in the American diet, partly because of the volume consumed.

Despite the antioxidants contained in coffee, sipping it excessively can cause a lot of negative impacts to your health.

Let’s take a look at a head to head comparison between tea and coffee and learn why you should start drinking tea instead of coffee.

Tea contains less caffeine

The amount of caffeine in a cup of brewed coffee (8 o.z) is between 95-200 mg whereas that of tea lies between 14-70 milligrams.

For most healthy adults, 400 milligrams of caffeine intake per day appears to be safe. However, it is recommended for adolescents that the caffeine content intake should be less than 100 milligrams per day. That said, experts suggest younger children not to drink caffeinated beverages on a regular basis.

Moreover, even for adults, heavy caffeine intake can cause many health issues such as insomnia, nervousness, upset stomach, fast heartbeat, etc.

Among the different types of teas, black tea and green tea are well known for their caffeine content. The caffeine content in a green tea variant like Matcha tea is about 70milligrams per cup.

How it affects you- Some people are more sensitive to caffeine than are others. In fact, how your body reacts to caffeine depends on how much caffeine you're used to consuming. People who tend to show a negative effect are those who don’t regularly drink caffeine. The negative effects are also influenced by a person’s body mass, age and health conditions.

Antioxidants

Antioxidants let you keep looking young, and feeling great plus tea has an abundance of them. Both tea and coffee are high in antioxidants that could neutralize the unhealthy free radicals in your body.

As you may know, all types of tea are made from the same plant known as Camellia sinensis. Once the tea leaves are picked, it is wilted and oxidized. According to the National Cancer Institute at the NIH, tea contains polyphenol compounds, which are antioxidants that might aid in cancer prevention.

Another study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association reveals that tea drinkers took in 20 times more flavonoid antioxidants per day than non-tea-drinkers. In addition, it has been found that drinking black tea on a regular basis can help block DNA damage associated with tobacco usages as it contains a high concentration of antioxidants.

Even though coffee has more antioxidants per cup than tea, drinking too much coffee is known to cause jittery, high blood pressure and increased heart rate. Due to these reasons, it is not recommended to sip more than two cups of coffee daily.

Though antioxidant content in green tea and black tea is far less than that of coffee, they are considered to be better sources of antioxidants as they can be served all day long. In fact, for most people, drinking 6-8 cups of tea is considered healthier.

Protect you from diseases

Drinking tea on a daily basis is better for your health and evidence shows it may even protect you from several diseases.

Help you shed unwanted pounds: Serving tea on a regular basis activates an enzyme, which helps burning more calories.

Lower the risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson disease: Catechin compounds in green tea have been shown to  have various protective effects on neurons in test tubes and animals, which can potentially lower the risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. [Sources: 1, 2,3]

Benefits for diabetes patients: Some of the common symptoms of diabetes are an excessive rise in plasma glucose levels, decline in insulin secretion and excessive thirst. Studies show that white tea consumption can prevent such symptoms.

Though, drinking coffee also has some health benefits, preventing diabetes by lowering the risk of liver disease, the excessive drinking can cause a lot of negative impacts in your health. A few of them are listed below.

Adrenal fatigue: Studies have shown that coffee increases stress hormones, which causes wear and tear on your body. When your adrenal glands can’t match the demands of stress it causes adrenal fatigue. If your glands are already stressed, sipping more coffee may eventually lead to adrenal fatigue. [Sources: 1, 2]

Health of bones and teeth

A lot of studies have revealed that drinking tea can positively impact the health of teeth and bones as well.

  • Flavonoids in tea may protect the body's bones during the ageing process.
  • In black tea, it even helps preventing brittle bones.
  • Apart from strengthening bones, they are already linked with lowering cancer and heart disease risk.
  • Three cups of tea a day could cut the risk of bone fractures in the elderly by almost a third.
  • Each cup of tea consumed lowered the risk of a hip fracture by 9%.

Drinking tea has great potential for reducing the risk of dental caries. This benefit is thought to be due to a reduction in inflammation in the oral cavity and prevention of the adhesion and growth of bacteria linked to periodontal disease. Black tea combats bacteria linked with tooth decay and gum disease.

In fact, drinking black tea can help combat two types of bacteria such as Streptococcus mutans and Lactobacillus which cause tooth decay and gum disease.

Although the enamel of your teeth is one of the hardest substances in the human body, it is not smooth and consists of microscopic pits and ridges that can hold particles of food and drink. Drinking brewed teas resulted in dramatically less enamel loss than drinking soft drinks and fruit juices.

Tooth stains from coffee are caused by numerous polyphenols found in coffee which adhere to the outside of your teeth.

Author bio: Shahzad Saeed is a tea lover and a freelance blogger. Connect with him on Twitter @shahzadsaeed and LinkedIn.

GUEST POST: Tea Drinkers Rule!

TEA DRINKERS RULE!

Pop culture is not kind to those who favor tea over coffee.  Coffee drinkers chase terrorists, fight aliens and outrun earthquakes, while tea drinkers sit around nibbling cookies as they sip from fine china teacups with their pinkie extended.  However, since tea is the second most popular beverage in the world after water, it’s safe to say this image hardly represents the average tea drinker.  In fact, there’s plenty of proof they’re just as deserving of their own action movie as the java jockeys.

Tea can be traced back to the 3rd century, though legend places its origin as far back as 3000 B.C.  The origin of coffee dates back to the 14th century, while legend says it was discovered in the 9th century.  Either way tea predates coffee by hundreds of years, so it holds the distinction of being the first to give people a caffeine fix.

Tea was first brewed in China, while coffee debuted in the Middle East.  Muslims made huge contributions to science, medicine and philosophy, but these volumes of knowledge could only be preserved thanks to paper, one of the many revolutionary inventions to come out of China.  Add gunpowder, noodles, and toilet paper to China’s list and there’s no doubt who comes out ahead in the game-changing discoveries department.

Now let’s take a look at the most powerful civilizations in history.  First, the Mongols.  They tore through Asia and the Middle East like tissue paper, creating the world’s largest continuous empire.  As they marched across the continent conquering folks left and right, they drank a fermented tea called kombucha for vitality and strength.  If this tea was a person it would be less Indian yogi and more soccer hooligan, proving that tea can be just as tough as coffee can be pretentious (Exhibit A: Starbucks).

 

Next we have the British Empire.  Brits are the ones most associated with the sissy tea drinker stereotype, but sissies could not have ruled over the largest empire in the history.  Sissies could not have maintained said empire for almost 200 years by repelling invaders and crushing rebellions.  Sissies couldn’t rock powdered wigs and lead-based makeup.  At the height of their power the British pretty much ran the world, their influence shaping the political, social and economic climate of dozens of countries that is still evident to this day, and they still managed to make time for afternoon tea.

Okay, so maybe tea drinkers were a force to be reckoned with in the past, but what about today?  If you look at the top five tea drinking countries you’ll find the U.K. and Ireland, neither of which can be considered dainty doilies.  And number one on that list?  Turkey.  Yes, the same Turkey that invented coffee and coffee houses drinks more tea per capita than any other country.  Be sure to savor the irony the next time you’re savoring a cup of nice, hot, manly cup of tea.

 

Dana Schellings is a freelance writer, avid swimmer, and pub trivia enthusiast.  Check out her monthly column at absrdcomedy.com and follow her on Twitter @DanaSan88.  If you want to hire her or just tell her how awesome she is, email her at danaschellings@gmail.com