Black tea? Green tea? Herbal tea? Yerba mate? Oolong?
There are so many different types of teas and it’s simple to just lump them all into the same category and be done with it! But the kaleidoscope of different teas offer different tastes, caffeine levels, antioxidants, and migh-tea benefits. Choosing the right tea(s) for you and your lifestyle goals will help you get the most out of your cup!
We’ve all read about some of the adverse effects of consuming too much caffeine, but having a cup or two of black tea can have some really great perks (In addition to the caffeinated variety, of course!)
We recently wrote about the key difference between green and black tea, being the manner in which it’s processed, and chatted about a few of their many tea benefits. But today, we’re deep-diving into the black tea benefits specifically. Ready?
#1. Antioxidants In Black Tea That Benefits Your Oral Health
Black tea contains an abundance of antioxidants and one of those antioxidants are called polyphenols, which is a main component of your black tea. Research out of the University of Illinois has shown that the polyphenols, catechins, and theaflavins actually inhibit the growth of oral bacteria and can help to ward off infections like strep throat and dental cavities.
Black tea benefits your tooth enamel as well, thanks to its natural source of fluoride!
As the catechins in black tea are oxidized, they form chemicals like theaflavins, which are a type of tannin found in black tea. These tannins have also been shown to inhibit the growth of the bacteria responsible for plaque build-up, making black tea a helpful tool in preventing cavities. Cool, right?
#2. Heart Health Is Boosted Due To Drinking Black Tea Often
Several research studies conducted have captured the powerful black tea benefits pertaining to heart health. One study, which spanned over 10 years of data collection, found that the consumption of four or more cups of black tea reduced the risk of stroke by 32%!
A second research study discovered that those who drank three cups per day reduced their risk by 21%.
#3. Black Tea Lowers Risk Of Diabetes
Fascinating research into black tea benefits and insulin resistance showed that black tea consumption- specifically without the addition of milk or sugar- increased insulin activity more than 15-fold, which is an incredible black tea benefit! It’s important to note, however, that the study found that once milk was added, the effects decreased significantly, meaning you’ll want to drink your black tea, well, black, in order to reap maximum black tea benefits!
#4. Black Tea Helps Prevent Cancer
While additional research is needed in this field, some studies have suggested that the polyphenols in black tea might play a role in regulating the growth of cancerous cells and potentially inhibiting new cancer cell development.
Another study on black tea benefits and breast cancer found these polyphenols “may be beneficial in the chemoprevention of hormone-dependant breast tumours.”
#5. Improved Focus And Stress Relief
Research studies have found that an amino acid found in black tea called L-theanine can promote relaxation and concentration while increasing alpha activity in the brain. This better enables you to ignore distractions and switch your attention between tasks more smoothly. This may be of huge black tea benefit to those of us who live with ADD (as I do), considering how breaking focus and switching tasks can be incredibly difficult.
Alpha waves have been linked to a reduction in stress and may also help with anxiety. On the reverse side, researchers have strong evidence to suggest that those living with Depression have impaired alpha activity in the brain, which would explain in part why those living with Depression have difficulty concentrating.
#6. Black Tea Benefits Digestive Health
It’s been suggested that the polyphenols in black tea benefit your digestive health by promoting the growth of good bacteria while also inhibiting the growth of some pathogenic bacteria’s such as Salmonella.
#7. Improved Immunity And General Health
A research study out of Harvard Medical School found that people who drank 5 cups of black tea each day for a period of 2 weeks had their immune systems producing 10 times more cold and flu virus-fighting cells.
Because it’s flush with antioxidants as well, black tea benefits your overall health by combating free-radicals and preventing cell damage. Antioxidants specific to black tea have been linked to protection against many conditions, symptoms, and diseases - such as heart disease, arthritis, cancer, stroke, memory loss and infection.
It’s also worth noting that black tea is a delicious alternative to sweets and desert, should that be something on your radar. It’s important to look for true black teas, free of artificial flavours and additives in order to reap maximum benefits!
Ready to get your hands on some? Check out our collection of black teas, and fill your boots... er, cup!
Author: Aly Dort is a freelance illustrator and stationery designer living in Halifax, N.S. She is passionate about mental health, social sustainability and empowering those around her.