What are the best teas for health?

What happened? How did I end-up landing on this page? Scotty you beamed me to the wrong page you idiot.

It’s likely that we all enjoy a hot cup of tea — or herbal infusion — at least from time to time, if not on a daily basis. But what are the most important health benefits that some of these soothing teas can bring us? Read on to learn more about the top teas for our health.

“Tea began as a medicine and grew into a beverage,” writes 19th-century Japanese scholar Okakura Kakuzo in his infamous publication The Book of Tea.

In it, he speaks at length about the history of tea and the philosophy of the traditional Japanese tea ceremony.

Kakuzo was correct: modern research about the history of tea-drinking in the world confirms that this beverage was originally consumed less for pleasure or as a mindfulness aid, calling for the drinker to take slow sips and be in the moment.

Instead, as shown by Prof. Victor Henry Mair — from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia — in The True History of Tea, early in its history, the tea plant (Camellia sinensis) became popular for its medicinal properties.

The tea plant’s main varieties — Camellia sinensis sinensis and Camellia sinensis assamica — are responsible for most of the tea brews that we are accustomed to: black tea, green tea, white tea, and oolong tea.

There are many other types of teas and infusions using various other plants, such as Aspalathus linearis, which is better known as “rooibos” or “redbush.” In this Spotlight, we’ll give you an overview of the top five teas that can benefit your health.

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1. Green tea

A favorite with tea drinkers everywhere, green tea has been praised for its medicinal properties for years. Some recent studies have now confirmed some of these benefits, suggesting that green tea may protect various aspects of our health.

To begin with, this beverage has been found to enhance cognitive functioning, with one studyTrusted Source connecting it to better working memory, the type of we use on a day-to-day basis.

Researchers from the University Hospital of Basel in Switzerland found that healthy people who agreed to consume a soft drink containing 27.5 grams of green tea extract exhibited more intense activity in brain areas linked to working memory.

Therefore, participants who had ingested the green tea extract had better connectivity between the frontal and parietal lobes of the brain, which are two regions involved in aspects of learning, memory processes, and decision-making.

The health benefits brought about by green tea have been linked with their content of polyphenolsTrusted Source, which are micronutrients with antioxidant properties. As antioxidants, these substances can protect against the action of free radicals, which induce the type of cellular damage consistent with aging.

A 2017 study that was published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society found that one such poly phenol found in green tea — called epigallocatechin gallate — may lower the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by interacting with the “building blocks” that form beta-amyloid plaques.

A buildup of these plaques in the brain is typical of this condition and impairs brain cell signaling. Epigallocatechin gallate, this study suggests, could stop beta-amyloid from forming into plaques, potentially helping to keep Alzheimer’s at bay.

This same green tea poly phenol has also been said to slow down the growth of tumor cells of certain types of cancer, such as pancreatic cancer.

Research that was led by the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute in California has shown that epigallocatechin gallate can disrupt the metabolism of pancreatic cancer cells, thereby impairing their growth.

2. Jasmine tea

What we refer to as “jasmine tea” is a type of beverage that usually has green tea at its base, to which jasmine flowers are added for an enriched aroma.

But the benefits of jasmine tea aren’t solely due to the antioxidant effects of the tea plant, since jasmine blooms also bring their own medicinal properties to the mix.

In the book Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life, authors Héctor García and Francesc Miralles note that the inhabitants of a healthy, long-lived community in the Okinawa Prefecture of Japan are avid drinkers of Sanpin-cha, a special blend of green tea and jasmine.

“Okinawans drink more Sanpin-cha — a mix of green tea and jasmine flowers — than any other kind of tea,” they write, suggesting that this blend may play a role in keeping the inhabitants of Okinawa healthy and mentally agile well into old age. This may be because, like the tea plant, jasmine flowers contain antioxidants — which may protect cells from age-related damage.

Jasmine itself has been linked with improved physical well-being and is said to reduce the impact of stress. That is why some researchers have experimented with compounds derived from this plant in the search of better therapies.

And, if you happen to enjoy drinking jasmine tea simply because you love the way it smells, there’s actually a good reason for that. Research that was published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology explained that the smell of jasmine tea is soothing, able to calm nerves, and able to help regulate mood.

3. Rooibos tea

Another type of tea with antioxidant properties is rooibos, or “redbush tea,” which is prepared from the Aspalathus linearis plant native to South Africa.

Research has suggested that the antioxidant effects of rooibos are similar to, if not quite as strong as, those of green tea.

A recent study on the rat model has suggested that the antioxidants in rooibos tea may protect the liver from oxidative stress, helping to render this organ more resilient to induced damage.

The researchers who conducted the study noted that their findings suggest that rooibos tea or rooibos-derived dietary supplements may offer a useful health boost.

Moreover, rooibos has also been cited as helpful in lowering blood pressure and relaxing tense muscles, suggesting that the active ingredient in this instance might be one of the flavonoids (pigments) that it contains: chrysoeriol.

Unlike green or black tea, rooibos does not contain any caffeine, so it won’t have the same stimulating effects. This makes it safe to drink well into the evening.

4. Hibiscus tea

Those of you who enjoy the refreshing taste of a more sour brew may also be familiar with herbal infusions of hibiscus, a plant whose flowers can be used not just to make invigorating beverages, but also to give a subtle “punch” to salads, or as an elegant garnish for sophisticated dishes.

The most commonly used variety is Hibiscus sabdariffa, also known as the “roselle.”

For the tea — or, more correctly “tisane” (herbal tea) — its calyces are typically used, although other parts of the plant, such as the leaves, seeds, and roots, are safe for consumption.

Studies have suggested that extracts from the hibiscus calyx and hibiscus leaves have antioxidant and antitumoralTrusted Source effects.

Therefore, they may protect against the aging action of free radicals at a cellular level, as well as fight certain types of leukemia cells.

Hibiscus tea has also been tied to cardiovascular benefitsTrusted Source, helping to regulate systolic and diastolic blood pressure — that is, blood pressure during and in-between heart beats, respectively.

Though not so commonly used to brew tea, hibiscus leaves have also been linked repeatedly to a wide array of health benefits. Thus, the polyphenols in hibiscus leaves may help to induce tumor cell death in skin cancer, according to a 2015 studyTrusted Source.

Another studyTrusted Source from the same year also argued that hibiscus leaf extracts could inhibit the action of prostate cancer cells.

5. Lemon verbena tea

Another herbal tea whose medicinal properties are getting increasingly recognized is that made out of lemon verbena, scientifically dubbed Aloysia citrodora.

It is the citrus-flavored cousin of a better-known plant that has been used in herbal infusions for years: verbena, or vervain (Verbena officinalis).

Infusions made with lemon verbena are great for those who, like me, prefer a subtler citrusy aroma in their hot drinks, rather than the strong, lemony flavor of commonly commercialized citrus tea blends.

The first time that I came upon this plant sold as a tisane herb was in a local organic shop that was selling it as “weight loss tea.”

In fact, studies have shown that the polyphenols in this plant can decrease Trusted Source the formation of fatty acids, marking its potential use in the treatment of obesity-related health issues.

Researchers have also suggested that lemon verbena extracts may help to lower inflammatory markers’ levels Trusted Source in the blood of some people with multiple sclerosis.

“Results demonstrate that supplementation with lemon verbena extracts may affect the cytokine [inflammation markers] profile depending on the clinical subtype,” the study authors conclude.

Having a cup of your tea — or tisane — of choice may be a pleasant way to carve out some self-indulgence time and stimulate your bodily and mental well-being in a subtle way.

But always keep in mind that, as the saying goes, “one swallow does not a summer make,” and the most potent health benefits are best reaped by leading a healthful, wholesome lifestyle.

Does green tea help weight loss?

Green tea has been associated with several health benefits, including weight loss, due to its rich nutritional and antioxidant makeup.

While it has recently gained popularity in the West, green tea has long been used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat numerous conditions from headaches to wound-healing.

More recently, green tea has been linked to weight loss. This article will look at the evidence behind this claim, as well as the most effective methods of consuming green tea to help with weight loss.

Green tea and weight loss

This is out of control better start drinking Green Tea.

The processes that allow the body to convert food and drink into usable energy are collectively known as the metabolism. Green tea may be beneficial for weight loss by helping the body’s metabolism to be more efficient.

Green tea contains caffeine and a type of flavonoid called catechin, which is an antioxidant. Research suggests Trusted Source that both of these compounds can speed up metabolism. Catechin can help to break down excess fat, while both catechin and caffeine can increase the amount of energy the body uses.

A review published in Trusted Source found that green tea supplements, contain catechizes or caffeine, had a small but positive impact on weight loss and weight management.

A more recent review investigated the clinical use of green tea to stimulate weight loss in people who were overweight or obese. While it found green tea to have a positive impact on weight loss, the result was not significant, and the authors concluded that it was unlikely to be of clinical importance.

There is a theoretical basis to the benefit of green tea for weight loss, and some empirical evidence has been found to support these claims outside of clinical settings.

However, research studies in this area tend to use doses that contain a higher proportion of catechin or caffeine than would be found in a typical cup of green tea.

It is important to note that any benefits of green tea for weight loss are likely to be very small. The impact of green tea is not as beneficial as other healthy weight loss methods, such as exercise, that have far greater metabolic benefits.

Regularly exercising and eating a healthful diet with plenty of vegetables are highly effective weight loss strategies. Green tea used alongside these methods may increase their positive results.

How to consume green tea

They can drink their beloved Green Tea I will just have my Scotch.

Drinking between 2 and 3 cups of hot green tea throughout the day should be sufficient for supplementing weight loss. The exact amount will vary from person to person, depending on how much caffeine they consume and their natural metabolism.

Green tea comes in a number of varieties but, for weight loss, there are unlikely to be significant differences between them. Plain, minimally processed green teas are likely to have retained the richest nutritional content.

Green tea is considered safe to consume. However, care should be taken in some cases, as large doses of caffeine can pose problems for those at risk of heart problems or with high blood pressure.

What is green tea?

Tea comes in different varieties, but all are derived from the same plant. Green, black, white, and oolong tea are produced from the Camellia sinensis plant.

Green tea is manufactured by steaming the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant. It does not go through the same fermentation process used to make other types

Other health benefits

Green tea contains a range of different compounds, including:

  • B vitamins
  • folate
  • magnesium
  • flavonoids
  • other antioxidants

It has been associated with several health benefits, including:

  • reducing cholesterol
  • improving heart functioning
  • reducing Alzheimer’s disease risk
  • managing type 2 diabetes
  • having anti-cancer properties

The evidence for many of these claims remains inconclusive, however. For example, a 2009 review Trusted Source of the research linking the consumption of green tea to the prevention of cancer was unable to find any strong evidence supporting the claim.

A more recent 2013 reviewTrusted Source found some evidence to suggest the consumption of green tea can reduce cholesterol. However, this was based on a small number of short-term studies.

In conclusion, more high-quality, long-term studies are needed to confirm whether green tea is beneficial for any medical conditions.

Takeaway

Green tea is rich in nutrients and antioxidants that may have a range of health benefits. Further research will be required to determine the extent to which it may help with weight loss and the best method for its consumption.

Green tea is not harmful, and it has been used for centuries. As such, it may be a useful addition to a healthful diet and exercise regime for weight loss and overall health.

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