Does Tea Really Provide Health Benefits?

With so many different varieties of tea available, there can be confusion about which type you should drink. Add to that confusion, the question about health benefits, if any, and you can be left scratching your head and wondering.

Health benefits of tea seem to vary with the type of tea and, of course, the amount consumed. In general, lengthy research studies have confirmed that there are definitely potential health benefits for daily tea drinkers.

All tea contains some level of antioxidants but not all forms are created equal. For example, the anti-cancer properties of antioxidant polyphenols are not found in herbal teas. It has also been found that freshly brewed teas have more of the polyphenols antioxidants than instant. For the best health benefits, select high quality loose leaf teas.

Medical studies at Harvard Medical School and UCLA’s School of Medicine confirmed that green tea may slow down the spread of prostate cancer and esophageal cancer. A study at Oregon State University indicated that green tea and white tea may help fight colon cancer. There have been numerous other medical studies that confirm possible benefits of tea in fighting leukemia and Alzheimer’s Disease. Other studies have focused on potential benefits for lowering “bad” cholesterol and protecting against heart disease.

Without question, it has the benefit of less caffeine than coffee. Many coffee drinkers complain of caffeine jitters which can easily be resolved by switching to tea.

Although medical research only confirms the potential of teas to protect against and fight various cancers, the research results have been encouraging. Bottom line, even the possibility of such great health benefits has convinced me that having fresh brewed tea each day is definitely worthwhile. If nothing more, fresh hot (or iced) tastes good and creates a calm relaxed feeling. If protection against cancer and heart disease happens to be a by-product of enjoying fresh brewed tea, it strikes me as a win-win situation.