5 Reasons to Drink Tea Daily

tea benefitsSince that incident in Boston all those years ago, Americans have largely shunned tea in favor of coffee. But now that most of us aren’t holding any grudges about King George’s taxation system, it might be time to start reintroducing the drink to your daily routine.

Here are five excellent reasons to swap out your morning java for a cup of tea.

1. Tea has been shown to reduce the risk of cancer and other serious diseases. While researchers are still debating the exact impact tea has on cancer, studies have shown that rates of lung, prostate, and breast cancer decreased most significantly in tea-drinking populations. In addition, tea helps guard against heart disease, reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke, and reduce cholesterol. Credit the beverage’s polyphenals with many of these disease-fighting capabilities.

2. Tea keeps you healthy in the long term. The antioxidants in tea have been shown to help protect skin against damage from the sun and from aging. These powerful compounds have also been shown to reduce acne as much as the harsh topical treatment benzoyl peroxide. One more boon of regular tea drinking? Tea drinkers have been shown to have stronger bones than their “tea-totaling” peers. Some researchers suggest that the phytochemicals found in tea can take the credit for this benefit.

3. Tea makes you look better. A natural source of both tannins and fluoride, tea helps protect teeth from decay (as long as you drink it sans sugar!). Even better? Drinking five or more cups of green tea daily boosts your metabolism slightly, which may aid in weight loss. If you’re happy with the way you look, drink tea for its stress-reduction properties, which will help you feel great, too.

4. Tea has no calories. Hot or cold, tea is a calorie-free way to refresh yourself. To make sure you aren’t consuming unwanted sugars, brew your own iced tea rather than using sweetener-laden powders.

5.Tea keeps you alert (without feeling jittery). Because tea has less caffeine than coffee, it imparts a feeling of mental alertness without causing the jitters. In the long term, tea has been shown to reduce the risk of cognitive impairment, thus contributing to better brain function over time.

Even if you’re a diehard coffee guzzler, a cup of herbal tea in the evening or a mug or two of tea instead of your afternoon fix could help you enjoy the health-boosting, disease-busting benefits of this wonder drink!



Can Green Tea Really Help Fight Cancer and Help Your Heart?

green teaFor years, green tea was believed to help keep your heart healthy and fight cancer, among other health benefits, and we’re learning more about it every year.

Catechins are the antioxidants in green tea, and they act as scavengers in your system, gobbling up free radicals that can contribute to disease. These antioxidants are abundant in green tea because it doesn’t go through the processing that other teas do. One particular catechin, epigallocatechin-3-gallate, or EGCG, was found to shrink tumors in mice in one Canadian study. Other lab studies have shown it stops cancer growth, but human trials have not proven it yet.

According to Marji McCullough of the American Cancer Society, the challenge of green tea human studies is finding populations that drink enough green tea for an adequate length of time. A few human studies have shown green tea to be effective, but most were conducted in Asia and the East, where green tea is widely used. Also, the typical Asian diet is higher in fish and soy than the standard American diet, which may influence results.

One study in Japan showed that women with Stage I and Stage II breast cancer had a lower recurrence if they drank more green tea before and after surgery. A second study in China showed that increased green tea consumption led to lower risk of several cancers including colorectal, stomach, prostate, and pancreatic. An analysis of 22 studies found that green tea could reduce risk of lung cancer.

In the case of heart disease, Japanese researchers found that four cups of green tea a day might have contributed to a reduced severity of heart disease among men in one study. A Dutch study of over 3,000 women and men found that those who drank more tea had less severe blood vessel clogging, perhaps because green tea’s antioxidants improve the flexibility of blood vessels. In addition, green tea has been found to help obesity and reduce LDL cholesterol levels, which also improve heart health.

Although the studies aren’t yet there to prove green tea’s benefits, researchers believe that the antioxidant load from green tea is beneficial. For more on green tea, click here.

What are your thoughts on the benefits of green tea?