Tea is the most popular beverage in the world. Green, black and oolong tea are all made by steeping the leaves of the Camellia sinensis shrub in hot water. Regular tea contains significant amounts of caffeine, as well as many health-protecting antioxidants. However, decaffeinated tea, as well as herbal tisanes such as mint, chamomile or hibiscus, provide health benefits without the unnecessary stimulant effects of caffeine.
Green, black and oolong tea come from different preparations of the leaves of the tea shrub. Of these, green tea contains the highest quantities of polyphenols, powerful antioxidants that may help prevent cancer and the effects of aging. When green tea is decaffeinated by chemical processes using ethyl acetate to strip the caffeine, the tea loses approximately 70 percent of its antioxidants. However, when green tea is decaffeinated by natural water process, it retains over 95 percent of its antioxidant components, providing all the same health benefits without the caffeine jitters.
Cardiovascular Disease Prevention
Green and black tea have both been demonstrated to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels, thereby possibly reducing the risk of heart disease and heart attack. The antioxidants in tea may help prevent artherosclerosis, and may help block the absorption of cholesterol. Water-processed decaffeinated tea retains most of the polyphenols that bestow these health benefits.
Sipping a warm cup of tea can be calming and impart a relaxed sense of focus, bringing a welcome respite from the workday. Many herbal tisanes bolster this effect, providing health benefits without the stimulating properties of caffeinated beverages. Chamomile tea has been consumed for thousands of years to calm frayed nerves, ease muscle spasms, reduce anxiety and promote sleep. Peppermint tea has antiviral and antibacterial properties, aids in digestion, and has long been used to relieve tension headaches and anxiety related to depression.
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