Across the world, cultural venues, retail shops, and restaurants are serving premium teas of different varieties; while most convenience stores, supermarkets, and vending machines are stocking up on bottled tea. For Americans, an estimated 158 million drink tea according to the Tea Association of the U.S.A. Inc. It is predicted that purchases will continue to increase.
The origin of tea came from a folk legend dated back to 2737 B.C. It was discovered when a falling leaf from a wild tea tree accidentally landed into a Chinese Emperor’s pot of boiling water.
Like coffee, a vast number of researches and studies have observed the connection between drinking tea and health benefits. While most studies did not involve participants that were selected randomly, others studies involve meta-analyses (studies of other studies) or systematic reviews.
Nevertheless, tea has been well-known by different cultures for its soothing ability to refresh the body and mind. Far from being a false promise, tea has been highly praised for an array of capable health benefits — from heart disease, reducing cancer risk, to boosting weight loss, and improving dental health.
Tea and Heart Health
Eleven trials that included 821 patients observed the connection of black and green tea with heart health. Consuming both teas was linked with lower total cholesterol readings, (LDL and triglycerides) and higher HDL levels (good cholesterol).
One meta-analysis involved 22 potential studies that included more than 850,000 participants. They discovered that drinking an extra three cups of tea daily was attributed with decreased reduction in cardiac deaths (26 percent), coronary artery disease (27 percent), total mortality rate (24 percent), stroke (18 percent), hemorrhagic stroke (21 percent), and cerebral infarction.
Tea and Cancer
Studies interlinking tea’s effectiveness for decreasing cancer risk has been less credible. Polyphenol compounds (catechins in particular) in tea may play a role in reducing the possibility of certain types of cancers. However, studies related to green and black tea for preventing cancer overall have been conflicting or limited.