What is Herbal Tea?
Herbal teas contain herbs, which are plants that have medicinal properties and can provide benefits to our health. The most common types of herbs used for herbal teas include mints, chamomile, basil, fennel, ginger and spearmint. Some other types of herbs used for herbal teas include sage, peppermint and cinnamon (some commercial brands use these ingredients).
The most common way people consume these herbs is by drinking them as tea or using them as flavoring in food. The herbal teas are usually served in tea bags or other types of containers.
People often drink herbal teas to help them feel relaxed, or to improve their health conditions such as sore throats, upset stomachs and headaches. Some people use these herbs to treat colds and flu, which is why they are often found in cough syrups and other over-the-counter medications.
Benefits of Herbal Tea
Here are some of the benefits of herbal teas:
They Are Rich in Antioxidants
The primary antioxidants in tea are polyphenols and flavonoids. The polyphenols, which include catechins, flavonoids, and proanthocyanidins, are responsible for the bitter taste of tea. Catechins are the most abundant of the polyphenols in tea.
Antioxidants can help protect against cellular damage caused by free radicals (unstable molecules that have unpaired electrons). Antioxidants in tea have been shown to have antioxidant effects in the body, including protection against cardiovascular disease. Research shows that flavonoids may reduce blood pressure and LDL cholesterol levels when taken with a high-fat meal.
Herbal Teas Can Reduce Risk of Heart Disease and Stroke
A meta-analysis published in 2008 looked at over one hundred studies on the effects of tea on heart disease risk factors such as total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, blood pressure, glucose levels, weight gain, and triglycerides.
They found that consumption of both green and black teas were associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. Green tea was associated with a lower risk of stroke than black tea. In fact, drinking four cups or more per day reduced the risk of stroke by 30%.
Flavonoids in tea may reduce the risk of stroke by 30%. They found that drinking two cups of tea per day reduced the risk of stroke by 30%. Tea contains a number of compounds that may have anti-stroke effects. These include polyphenols, catechins, and other bioflavonoids.
The mechanisms for the effects of tea on heart disease are not completely understood. But many studies have shown that polyphenols in tea can reduce blood pressure and increase HDL cholesterol levels. These effects may be due to the ability of polyphenols to inhibit platelet aggregation, reduce blood clotting, and lower blood sugar levels.
Furthermore, it is possible that some components in tea may protect against stroke by reducing the amount of a substance called thromboxane A2 (TPA) in the bloodstream.
TPA is an important factor in causing blood clots. In fact, this effect has been shown to be effective against hemorrhagic strokes, which are caused by bleeding into a blood vessel (for example, from a cut or an ulcer).
Aids in Weight Loss
It’s believed that the thermogenic effect of green tea can help burn fat.
Antioxidants in tea may help lower blood pressure and LDL cholesterol levels. A number of studies have shown that tea consumption is associated with a reduced risk of stroke, cardiovascular disease, and death from heart disease.
In addition, a study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that drinking three cups of green tea daily was associated with a 10% reduction in total cholesterol levels. (source)
Green tea contains less caffeine than black tea or coffee, which means it has fewer calories. This is one reason why many people choose to drink herbal teas instead of coffee or soda pop.
In fact, herbal teas contain as much as 50% less caffeine than black teas and 25% less caffeine than brewed coffee. They also contain about 40% less sugar than sodas and 40% less calories than black teas.
Green tea contains about 3 calories per cup, whereas black tea contains about 5 calories per cup. Although the calorie content of herbal teas varies depending on the type you choose to drink, most herbal teas are not high in calories and may be a good choice for people who are trying to lose weight.
Can You Drink Tea Too Much?
The problem is that people tend to over-consume herbal teas and often drink more than the recommended amounts by manufacturers.
If you drink herbal teas on a regular basis, you may be increasing your risk of some health problems. Some people can even develop an addiction to tea.
How Much Tea Should You Drink Regularly?
Women should drink no more than two cups of tea per day and men should drink no more than three cups per day. Women should drink tea at least two hours before bedtime and men should drink it three hours before bedtime. Tea is a diuretic, so if you are not used to drinking herbal teas, it’s best to begin slowly by having one cup in the morning and one cup in the afternoon.
Should You Drink Herbal Teas That Contain Caffeine?
Herbal teas that contain caffeine can have some side effects when consumed in large amounts. If you are pregnant or nursing, you should not consume more than 100 mg of caffeine per day (about 2 cups of tea) and should consult with their physicians.
If you are a coffee or soda addict, drinking herbal teas may help reduce your cravings for caffeine. Drinking herbal teas is better for your health than drinking coffee or soda pop because they don’t contain any calories and may have some health benefits
Herbal teas are a popular beverage that many people enjoy. In addition to being rich in antioxidants, they may help reduce cholesterol levels and help with weight loss. However, there is still debate on the evidence that herbal teas have any health benefits beyond those of regular black tea or coffee. The caffeine and calories amount varies. If you drink herbal teas regularly, you may be able to cut down on your coffee or soda intake without suffering from withdrawal symptoms such as headaches and fatigue.