In the course of your busy life, it may sometimes be challenging to find time to exercise and meal prep. But rather than letting your physical wellness take a backseat to that seemingly endless to-do list, what if better health was just a sip away? From anti-cancer and digestive benefits to improved skin and hair health, black tea offers myriad health benefits.
Even people with the most hectic schedules can find a few minutes to brew a cup of tea. While green tea and maté might be buzzy at the moment, to get the most bang for your buck, we suggest black tea. Made from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant and containing powerful antioxidants, the unique health benefits of black tea outweigh those of its trendier counterparts.
Whether you’re choosing which type of tea to drink while you read a book or completely overhauling your diet, it’s vital to pay close attention to the sources educating you about nutrition. On the internet alone, there is a wealth of information regarding nutritional benefits and the qualities of various foods. Learning about nutrition can be extremely beneficial, but trusting information from false experts can be detrimental to your health.
With the understanding of the importance of knowledgeable sources, here are five unique health benefits of black tea.
Sustained Energy Source
If you’re someone who needs your daily caffeine fix, black tea provides less jittery sustained energy than coffee. Thanks to the naturally occurring chemical L-theophylline, the caffeine in tea yields a more stable and continuous boost to your energy level.
Not only does moderate caffeine consumption help you with productivity, it also stimulates your metabolism. As noted above, the boost to your metabolism can help you reach your weight loss goals. As an added bonus, L-theophylline vitalizes the heart, kidneys and respiratory system.
Unlike coffee or even other types of tea, the overall impact of the caffeine in black tea is more evenly distributed throughout the body for maximum, balanced results.
Of all black tea’s unique health benefits, researchers have, perhaps, spent the most time on its anti-cancer properties. Like green tea, black tea contains polyphenols which help prevent the formation of potential carcinogens in the body. The consumption of black tea, specifically, may help prevent stomach cancer, prostate cancer and breast cancer, according to some studies.
Black tea has a compound called TF-2. Without damaging normal, healthy cells, TF-2 causes apoptosis of cancer cells. This “programmed death” helps to stop cancer growth in its tracks. Furthermore, black tea inhibits the formation and growth of malignant tumours. Unlike mate, black tea contains catechins—another powerful antioxidant that fights cancer-causing cells.
For its cancer-fighting benefits, many dieticians recommend drinking black tea as part of a healthy, well-balanced diet. Health educators, like dieticians, are a knowledgeable source you can trust for nutrition-related information.
That’s right: drinking black tea can improve your cardiovascular health. Black tea, a plant polyphenol, has no shortage of antioxidants and is particularly abundant in flavonoids. Because they prevent the oxidation of LDL cholesterol, research shows flavonoids lowers a person’s risk of heart disease.
For improved heart health, health experts suggest consuming at least three cups of black tea per day. Black tea flavonoids can reduce clots. As if that’s not enough of an incentive, the manganese in black tea is shown to help cardiac muscle function which reduces the risk for coronary heart disease.
When consumed regularly, black tea can be part of a healthy, preventative, well-balanced diet. Preventative healthcare is getting more air-time in the medical world. Nurses are leading the charge through education and can be a trusted resource to answer your questions about the nutritional qualities of various foods.
While black tea shares many health benefits with green tea, its plentiful tannins set black tea apart. These tannins provide significant benefits, including acting as a natural digestive aid.
Because of its many tannins, black tea slows down intestinal activity. Those suffering from gastric and intestinal illnesses (or, even, diarrhoea) can get relief from black tea. One such gastrointestinal disease is GERD. Affecting 20% of adults, GERD is a type of chronic acid reflux. Nutritional adjustments, including the consumption of black tea instead of sugary drinks, can help manage GERD.
Skin and Hair Health
Drinking black tea can benefit your skin in a variety of ways. With its plethora of vitamins and minerals, black tea nourishes your skin from the inside out. Its chemical components can help fight off acne and wrinkles alike.
You don’t even need to actually drink black tea to experience its health benefits. Black tea can improve your skin with direct application. To reduce puffiness and dark circles, try placing black tea bags under your eyes. For a full-body antioxidant boost, use black tea to draw yourself a herbal bath.
The health benefits of black tea extend to your scalp. Its antioxidants promote healthy hair growth, and black tea’s caffeine reduces the body’s levels of dihydrotestosterone. The latter will aid those suffering from hair loss. When regularly incorporated in your beauty routine, black tea can give you shinier, glossier hair
From skin and hair health to cancer prevention, black tea offers unique health benefits that green tea and mate don’t. That’s why trusted health educators, such as dieticians and nurses, promote making it a part of your well-balanced diet. Now that you know you can brew your way to better health, find time in your busy schedule to make yourself a cup of black tea.
Ainsley Lawrence, the author of this article, is a passionate writer. She is on Medium and Twitter.