Tea

ID-100205430Healthy Benefits

Disease Prevention and Risk Reduction

Tea (made from tea leaves)

A 2009 article published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology showed that an increase in tea intake of 2 cups daily was associated with a risk reduction of 25 percent for endometrial cancer.

A 2009 review article published in the Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology showed that tea contains a catechin, which appears to inhibit the production of molecules that promote cells called monocytes. Monocytes stick to the lining of the blood vessels, a significant development in atherosclerosis.

Studies have found that some teas may help with cancer, heart disease, and diabetes; encourage weight loss; lower cholesterol; and bring about mental alertness. Tea also appears to have antimicrobial qualities.

“There doesn’t seem to be a downside to tea,” says American Dietetic Association spokeswoman Katherine Tallmadge, MA, RD, LD. “I think it’s a great alternative to coffee drinking. First, tea has less caffeine. It’s pretty well established that the compounds in tea – their flavonoids – are good for the heart and may reduce cancer.”

Herbal Tea (made from flowers, fruits, herbs, or other plants)

According to an article at Best Health Magazine, these 7 herbal teas will make you healthier:

Peppermint Tea

  • Relieves abdominal gas and bloating
  • Relieves muscle spasms
  • Relieves nausea (without vomiting
  • Heats up the body, making it sweat

It’s best to avoid peppermint altogether if you have heartburn or indigestion problems.

Ginger Tea

  • Curbs nausea and vomiting
  • Curbs upset stomach due to motion sickness

Chamomile Tea

  • Helps with insomnia
  • Helps with digestion after a meal
  • Helps with cough and bronchitis
  • Helps with inflammation of the mouth when gargled

Rooibos Tea

  • Lots of health benefits due to the amount of vitamin C in it
  • May ward off disease and signs of aging due to its high antioxidant content
  • Helps with common skin concerns, such as eczema

Lemon Balm Tea

  • Helpful for lifting the spirits
  • Helps improve concentration
  • May help prevent nightmares in children

Milk Thistle and Dandelion Tea

  • Work as gentle liver cleansers
  • Assist in the production of bile

Rosehip Tea

  • Good for immune system
  • Good for skin and tissue health
  • Good for adrenal function

Important Points

Most teas are benign, but the FDA has issued warnings about so-called dieter’s teas that contain senna, aloe, buckthorn, and other plant-derived laxatives.

The agency also warns consumers to be wary of herb-containing supplements that claim to kill pain and fight cancer. None of the claims is backed by science and some of the herbs have led to bowel problems, liver and kidney damage, and even death.

Resources

Reinhard, Tonia. Superfoods: The Healthiest Foods on the Planet. Buffalo, NY: Firefly, 2010. Print.

Edgar, Julie. “Types of Teas and Their Health Benefits.” WebMD. WebMD, n.d. Web. 24 July 2013.

Dault, Meredith. “7 Herbal Teas That Will Make You Healthier | Nutrition | Eat Well | Best Health.” Best Health. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 July 2013.

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