5 Amazing Health Benefits that will Give You Strong Reasons to Drink Black Tea
Isn’t it amazing that Camellia Sinensis, commonly known as a tea plant, can assume so many different colours and flavours? Amidst several tea varieties, black tea is one of the most popular ones.
Do you know black tea was “accidentally invented” by a Chinese army in the 17th century? The anecdote goes that a tired army passing through Fujian province stopped to rest at a non-functioning tea factory. The army was amused to see that tea leaves turned dark and crisp after being left out in the sun for long. So some decided to dry them further by smoking them over pinewood. This is how the world got its first black tea.
The robust flavour of the black tea also intrigued the westerners visiting China, and then it became popular worldwide, breaking the barriers of boundaries.
It is important to note that the process of making black tea involves oxidation. Therefore, it offers nutritional benefits that may not be present in green tea. In addition, the components in black tea are believed to reduce the risk of cancer and heart diseases.
Let’s look at some of the most prominent health benefits of black tea.
1. Packed with antioxidants:
We all have heard enough about antioxidants. But what exactly do they do? Our bodies have unstable molecules that are known as free radicals. If they are not removed from the body, they can damage or change cells, resulting in diseases like cancers or atherosclerosis.
Antioxidants terminate the chain reaction before it can damage our body’s vital organs by boosting our body’s strength to fight against these free radicals. Thus, antioxidants reduce the risks of deadly diseases.
Black tea is a powerful source of antioxidants. A study suggests that phenolic compounds having antioxidant effects constitute almost 30% of the dry weight of black tea.
What’s more, black tea goes through the oxidation process that converts catechin into thearubigins, theaflavins and flavanols that are good for gut health and blood pressure and slows down the growth of cancerous cells.
Here is a solid reason to start consuming black tea every single day.
2. Improves Heart Health:
The oxidation process provides black tea with magic ingredients called flavonoids. The natural substance also found in fruits, vegetables and dark chocolate is considered good for heart health.
Thus, regular consumption of black tea leads to a reduced risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, uncontrolled triglyceride levels and obesity.
A study on black tea’s impact on health suggests that three cups of black tea per day can reduce the risk of developing heart disease by up to 11%.
3. Contains anti-cancer properties:
Multiple studies have been conducted on tea’s anti-cancer properties. National Cancer Institute (NCI) has also researched on the same. It suggests that tea contains polyphenols that reduce the risk of tumour growth.
The oxidation process increases the concentrations of complex polyphenols, namely thearubigins and theaflavins in black tea. In lab studies, tea properties are found to prevent the growth of tumour cells.
Additionally, tea may protect against UV radiation and regulate the functioning of the immune system.
Black tea is specifically found to help reduce the risk of skin, breast, lung and prostate cancers.
4. Lowers ‘bad’ cholesterol level:
Our bodies contain two types of lipoproteins.
- Low-density Lipoprotein (LDL)
- High-density Lipoprotein (HDL)
Their function is to transport cholesterol throughout the body. HDL diverts cholesterol toward the liver and helps the body eliminate it. Whereas LDL chokes arteries by depositing wax and plaques. Increased LDL can cause heart failure or stroke.
Sedentary lifestyles and deteriorating food habits have contributed to increasing levels of ‘bad’ cholesterol. However, if people with high cholesterol levels drink five cups of black tea daily, it may reduce LDL by 11%. Several studies indicate that drinking black tea may significantly lower LDL levels.
So, black tea does not just improve mood and focus. It also takes care of the body’s vital organs.
5. It is a great immunity booster:
Do you know our immune system is made up of trillions of bacteria? Some bacteria residing in our gut are beneficial for our health, and they help reduce the risk of health conditions such as bowel disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular diseases. In some cases, they also help the body fight cancer.
Black tea contains polyphenols in abundance. They promote the growth of good bacteria while obstructing the growth of harmful bacteria. The antimicrobial properties in black tea help the body get rid of toxic substances and improve metabolism.
There is sufficient evidence to suggest that black tea positively impacts health if consumed in proportion. Experts recommend an intake of six to eight cups a day for optimum benefits.