Health Benefits of Tea
Updated: May 16, 2020
“Tea comforts the spirit, banishes passivity, lightens the body and adds sparkle to the eyes”
– Shen Nong, Medicinal Herbs
Tea, herbs, petals and peels possess a myriad of incredible benefits for your health and wellbeing. All have their own unique properties that restore and revitalise your body and mind.
Tea (Camellia sinensis) is bursting with powerful antioxidants, is a rich source of vitamins and has an abundance of beneficial properties, from supporting the heart and cardiovascular system to boosting the immune system. Tea acts as a stimulant, sharpening the mind, aiding concentration and boosting brain function. And there is now scientific evidence that tea improves creativity! Oooh la la. We love this!
Ever since Emperor Shen Nong (Divine Farmer) discovered the stimulating and detoxifying properties of tea some 4000 years ago, humans have been interested in its medicinal properties. Tea was first used as a medicinal beverage in China to regulate internal body temperature and stimulate the mind. When it reached Europe in the 17th Century it was sold in apothecary shops as a tonic and digestive. It was only in the first part of the 18th Century that it was embraced as a social beverage. Tea has since developed into an everyday drink valued for its health improving properties.
Here are some of the many beneficial properties attributed to tea.
It is known to:
· Support the heart system
· Activate circulation
· Help detoxification and the elimination of toxins
· Fight hypertension
· Reduce fatigue
· Slow the ageing process
· Help prevent certain types of cancer
· Help digestion
· Reduce cholesterol
· Balance body temperature
· Strengthen the immune system
· Enhances concentration
Tea is packed with antioxidants and chemicals, such as polyphenols, L-theanine and catechins that help to fortify the immune system. Of all teas, green and white are considered the most beneficial as they are made from the young leaves full of these chemicals and are the least processed. All tea types though, have various properties that are beneficial for our health and wellbeing.
White Tea is refreshing and thirst quenching and is, according to Chinese medicine, known to counteract excessive heat and alleviate the symptoms of menopause.
Green Tea appears to contain a higher number of polyphenols than other tea types. Thanks to these antioxidant properties, green tea could prevent certain forms of cancer. Also said to enhance intellectual performance, green tea contains more iron, vitamins and catechins than black tea. The dehydration method used in the processing of green tea produces a higher polyphenol content in the leaves.
Oolong/Wulong Tea is said to have a slimming effect (when consumed regularly) by stimulating the metabolising of lipids. It’s relaxing, anti-stress, even euphoric effect is said to be due to the high concentration of aromatic oils, which are drawn out from the leaves during rolling.
Black Tea is more effective as a physical stimulant than green tea as the caffeine in black tea is released more rapidly into the bloodstream over a shorter period compared to green tea, as oxidisation partially separates it from the tannins. The enzymatic oxidisation undergone by the leaves during the processing of black tea converts some of the catechins into theaflavins and thearubigins and destroys some of the vitamins.
Puerh Tea is recognised as helping specifically to regulate the body, stimulate digestion and eliminate cholesterol from the body.
Tea contains caffeine, a bitter compound that stimulates the nervous system. It is one of the various compounds sent from the roots of the plant to protect and nourish the buds as they grow, and it is known to repel insect attack. There are similar amounts of caffeine in tea, per dry leaf weight, to coffee. However, the polyphenols in tea regulate and slow the release of caffeine, so that the feeling of alertness it gives lasts much longer. Caffeine levels in tea depend on the type of tea used, the water temperature, the steeping time and the time of year the leaves are picked.
Tea catechins, sometimes called green tea catechins, are a group of flavonoids existing naturally in the fresh leaves of the tea plant, Camellia sinensis. Catechins exist in other food plants too, such as apples, berries and cocoa, but in much lower concentration than the tea leaf. There are other flavonoids in various proportions in different selections and varieties of processed tea leaves. Some of them are uniquely in tea — such as theaflavins and thearubigins — they are called tea polyphenols. Catechins are not stable. They deteriorate when come in extended contact with oxygen, light, moisture and other reactive substances in the environment. Research shows that the abundant levels of Catechins (molecules belonging to the Polyphenols group) in green tea may act as a powerful antioxidant. Younger leaves hold the most catechins as well as the most amino acids. That is why the most tender of first flushes is often sold as the most premium of a variety, because the plant has stored a whole winter’s worth of nutrients to fuel the first round of growth.
Antioxidants can have a positive effect on health by working to neutralise or combat free radicals that cause damage to the cells in the body. Consuming high levels of antioxidants has been proven to help lower the risk of heart disease, stroke and some cancers.
Tea is so good for you! Not to mention the herbs, petals, peels and spices that we blend with. The botanicals chosen for our tea blends and herbal tisanes all have their own unique properties that restore and revitalise your body and mind. More on that another time...
We use only premium 100% ORGANIC ingredients and there are no added flavours. We believe ingredients in their purest form create the most beautiful brews. So, next time you enjoy a cup of Brewed By Belinda goodness, you can be sure that we are giving you beautiful fresh tea, herbs, spices, peels and petals to bring you health, nourishment, calm and creativity.
Happy Brewing! x