The legendary health benefits of tea for today’s tea lover

Tea is an ancient beverage loved by people around the world. Black tea is the brew of choice in North America and Western Europe while Green and Oolong teas are popular in Asian countries. All these teas come from the Camellia sinensis plant and are linked to the potential health benefits. The difference is in way the Camellia sinensis tea plant’s leaves are handled after harvesting. Green teas are not oxidized but are rolled after steaming prior to drying; oolong teas are partially oxidized resulting in a light green to amber brew and black teas are fully oxidized leading to a darker colored liquid. Here are some more fascinating facts on tea and health:

DID YOU KNOW?

  • Tea is the second most popular beverage in the world next to water?
  • Tea was discovered by accident nearly 5,000 years ago?
  • Tea contains natural plant compounds called flavonoids that are good for your health?
  •  Tea can be a valuable addition to a healthy, well-balanced diet.
  • Tea drinkers tend to have lower risk for cardiovascular disease, certain cancers and many other chronic diseases according to hundreds of published research studies

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THE SKINNY ON TEA AND WEIGHT[1]

Obesity is a major public health concern in the Canada, and few strategies provide long-term success. Several studies suggest drinking calorie free tea may aid weight management, helping people meet fluid requirements without the added calories of some other drink options. Preliminary research suggests that tea flavonoids may help increase metabolism and fat oxidation and improve blood sugar control.  Tea catechins (a type of flavonoid) may also provide modest shifts in metabolism that may promote weight loss and maintenance.

Tea Lover’s TIPS for March – NUTRITION MONTH 2016

Dietitians are food and nutrition experts who can help you make healthy eating/drinking changes. For Nutrition Month 2016 Dietitians encourage Canadians to make small changes that they can stick to over the long run.  You can feel good about enjoying tea as part of a healthy lifestyle. Consider these tips for your health and wellness that are related to tea:[2]

  • Unsweetened tea is calorie-free.
  • Drinking tea adds to your fluid intake and can help you satisfy your thirst.
  • Drink water or brewed unsweetened tea in place of sugary beverages
  • Try hot or iced black or green teas without added sugar or honey. Enjoy the taste of tea itself![3]
  • Taking a break with a soothing hot drink can help you relax and reduce stress.

[1] USA Tea Association  http://www.teausa.com/teausa/images/Tea_Council_-_Tea_&_Health_Brochure_-_2.14.pdf

[2] ERO http://www.eatrightontario.ca/en/Articles/Antioxidants/Tea-Time.aspx#.Vs0drvkrKUk

[3] Dietitians of Canada Nutrition Month Campaign

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