To Your Health: Hot or cold, tea has big benefits for body and brain

Coffee or tea?

You might think that most Americans would opt for a cup of java. But tea has been growing in popularity in the United States – about half of us now have at least a cup a day.

That’s a trend we can get behind. Tea isn’t just a better option than sugary drinks; new research shows it might have big health benefits,too.

teaLike what? We thought you’d never ask.

• Tea has antioxidants that can help protect against cancer. Also, the antioxidants in green tea extract have been found to boost your exercise endurance.

• Tea is a hydrating drink, even though it has caffeine. Enjoy a glass of unsweetened iced tea with dinner or as a mid-morning pick-me-up.

• Tea drinkers appear to be at lower risk for heart disease and stroke. The research, though, is still young. And the benefits aren’t universal: Tea varieties and brews can affect the healthful benefits.

• Some tea varieties have been found to improve your mood, concentration or stress.

• Adding tea to your diet might help you regulate your weight better. One study found green tea extracts could interfere with fat formation in your body.

While a growing number of studies have shown tea can be good for you, experts are also urging caution. Too much of something is never a good thing.

Plus, non-tea drinkers might be tempted to mound sugar into their cups to sweeten their brew up. If you’re not partial to tea, you might stick with coffee.

Are you a tea drinker? Tell us what variety is your favorite.

2 comments

  • I love genmai cha….green tea with roasted brown rice flavor. Not many places sell the decaf version, though. I have to go Marukai or order online.

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  • Great pointers. Used to be a Java nut myself but switched to tea and I’m glad I did. My favorite is Japanese grade matcha green tea. For the taste and also the enormous benefits. I also like Oolong, ginger and acai berry (though the last two are not true teas). Glad to have people like you bringing awareness to the health benefits of tea. Hopefully we can all drink illness away! I found some tips here too. http:// teabenefitsguru.com

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