It's time to feel good about your favorite beverage again! Tea boasts so many health benefits that now and then, we just like to give you a healthy (get it?) dose of feel-good facts. And one more thing, while our list is specifically about actual tea (black, green and white) that come from the camellia sinensis plant, herbal teas (combinations of herbs, fruits, flowers, etc.) can also be wonderful to your health ... and we've just put our three loose organic Better Being Herbal Teas (Better Morning, Better Belly and Better Rest) on sale for 35 percent off until April 12! Now's your chance to try these teas loose, and really feel "better" about yourself. (Sorry for all the bad jokes ... it's that kind of day.)
So in honor of World Health Day, which was Tuesday, April 7, here goes:
- Tea can boost exercise endurance. Scientists have found that the catechins (antioxidants) in green tea extract increase the body’s ability to burn fat as fuel, which accounts for improved muscle endurance.
- Drinking tea could help reduce the risk of heart attack. Tea might also help protect against cardiovascular and degenerative diseases.
- The antioxidants in tea might help protect against a boatload of cancers, including breast, colon, colorectal, skin, lung, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, pancreas, liver, ovarian, prostate and oral cancers. But don’t rely solely on tea to keep a healthy body — tea is not a miracle cure, after all. While more studies than not suggest that tea has cancer-fighting benefits, the current research is mixed.
- Tea helps fight free radicals. Tea is high in oxygen radical absorbance capacity (“ORAC” to its friends), which is a fancy way of saying that it helps destroy free radicals (which can damage DNA) in the body. While our bodies are designed to fight free radicals on their own, they’re not 100 percent effective — and since damage from these radical oxygen ninjas has been linked to cancer, heart disease and neurological degeneration, we’ll take all the help we can get.
- Tea is hydrating to the body (even despite the caffeine!).
- Drinking tea is linked with a lower risk of Parkinson’s disease. When considered with other factors like smoking, physical activity, age and body mass index, regular tea drinking was associated with a lowered risk of Parkinson’s disease in both men and women.
- Tea could keep waist circumference in check. In one study, participants who regularly consumed hot tea had lower waist circumference and lower BMI than non-consuming participants. Scientists speculate that regular tea drinking lowers the risk of metabolic syndrome (which increases the risk of diabetes, artery disease and stroke), although it’s important to remember that correlation does not equal causation.
- Tea could be beneficial to people with Type 2 diabetes. Studies suggest that compounds in green tea could help diabetics better process sugars.
- Green tea has been found to improve bone mineral density and strength.
- Tea might be an effective agent in the prevention and treatment of neurological diseases, especially degenerative diseases (think Alzheimer’s). While many factors influence brain health, polyphenols in green tea may help maintain the parts of the brain that regulate learning and memory.
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