Sometimes tea gets a bad rep as a hot drink with few benefits, usually due to the fact that we often classify it as a replacement for coffee. It’s secondary to the energizing power of coffee, right? But there are several nutritional benefits that vary from tea to tea that we often don’t even think about. We focus almost entirely on the caffeine without giving consideration to the other natural vitamins and supplements that tea has to offer. While there is nothing wrong with a caffeine-focused mindset and routine, it’s important to realize what you could be giving up when you reach for something other than tea. You could be giving up a ton of free-radical-killing antioxidants and brain and body supplements manufacturing health throughout the body.
It’s important to realize that many types of tea do indeed have caffeine, and some teas pack a punch in the same way coffee does. Take, for instance, black tea, which offers about 47 mg of caffeine compared to 95 mg in coffee of the same serving size. While it’s true that coffee provides twice as much caffeine, studies have shown that black tea may play a vital role in protecting lung function in the face of damage from cigarette smoke exposure, and evidence suggests that it may also help reduce the risk of stroke. Black tea may be one of the less favorable types due to its mildly bitter taste, but these fermented tea leaves are the closest you’ll get to coffee without making the full leave.
As far as supplements go, green tea, or green tea extract, has been a major selling point among tea nutrition. The benefits of regular green tea intake are tenfold, and new studies are revealing benefits all the time. Not only is it a highly effective antioxidant, but it’s also been shown to support heart health, helping to prevent blockages in main arteries and reducing risk of stroke. It’s also been shown to provide the brain with the necessary nutrition to stave off neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.
While there hasn’t been much revealed about the benefits of white tea, it still harbors many of the benefits other teas do. In particular, white tea has proven to be one of the most potent anticancer teas on the market, especially compared to more processed tea.
Usually fermented using aged tea leaves, oolong and pu-erh tea are the go-to for weight loss support and cholesterol control. Both are known to reduce bad cholesterol, and while studies are still being conducted, there is promising evidence that these teas also limit weight gain.