The benefits of Black tea have been known to us for millennia. It should not be a surprise that Black Tea is the 2nd highest consumed beverage, 2nd only to water. Black tea like all the other types of tea (Green tea, White Tea, Oolong & Pu’erh tea) comes from the same plant, “Camellia Sinensis”. The only difference is how the leaves are treated after the harvest. Black tea has the highest concentration of all the goodness & flavors of tea.
It is full of antioxidants and compounds that can help us maintain good health & help reduce inflammation in the body. Here are just 5 of the several health benefits of black tea, all supported by scientific studies.
Antioxidant Properties of Tea
Antioxidants have been known to have a plethora of health benefits. Getting the right amounts of antioxidants in your system helps you remove free radicals, reduce cell damage in the body & minimize the chances of chronic diseases.
Studies have shown that polyphenol antioxidants found in black tea can help one fight diabetes by reducing blood sugar levels & reduce LDL cholesterol. Antioxidants can be consumed via several over-the-counter supplements, but it is believed that the best way to consume antioxidants is via natural foods & drinks. In fact, some research has found that taking antioxidants in supplement form may harm your health
Black Tea Can Boost Heart Health
Black tea is filled with another group of antioxidants called flavonoids, which promote heart health. Besides tea, flavonoids are also found in some vegetables, fruits, red wine, and dark chocolate. Consuming moderate amounts of flavonoids on a regular basis might help reduce many risk factors for heart disease, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, elevated triglyceride levels, and obesity. One randomized & controlled study found that regularly consuming black tea for 10-12 weeks significantly decreased triglyceride values by 36%, reduced blood sugar levels by 18%, and lowered the LDL/HDL plasma ratio by 17%. A different study came to the conclusion that those who drank 3 cups of black tea every day had an 11% reduced risk of developing cardiac diseases. Adding black tea to your daily diet is an easy way to incorporate antioxidants into your diet and potentially minimize risk.
Black Tea Helps Reduce “Bad” LDL Cholesterol Levels
The body has 2 lipoproteins that transport cholesterol all over the body. One is low-density lipoprotein (LDL) aka “bad Cholesterol” & the other is high-density lipoprotein (HDL) aka, “Good Cholesterol”.
LDL is considered the “bad” lipoprotein as it transports cholesterol to cells all over the body. Meanwhile, HDL is considered the “good” lipoprotein as it transports cholesterol away from your cells & to the liver to be excreted. When the LDL concentration increases in the body, it can cause build-ups in the arteries & waxy deposits called plaques. These can lead to problems like heart failure or stroke.
Fortunately, some studies found that Drinking tea might help reduce LDL cholesterol. One such study found that drinking five servings of black tea per day reduced LDL cholesterol by 11% in individuals with slightly or mildly elevated cholesterol levels.
Another randomized 90-day study in 47 individuals compared the effects of traditional black tea extract and placebo on LDL levels. Results found a prominent decrease in LDL levels in people who drank black tea, compared to the placebo group, without any unwanted side effects. Researchers concluded that black tea helped improve cholesterol levels in individuals at risk for heart disease or obesity.
Tea Improves Your Gut Health
Studies have found that the microbiome in your gut plays an important role in your health. That’s because the gut contains trillions of bacteria & is responsible for 70–80% of your body’s immune system. While some of the bacteria in your gut are beneficial for your health, some are not. In fact, studies have hinted that the microbiome in your gut may play an important role in reducing the risk of health conditions, such as inflammatory bowel disease, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and even cancer. The polyphenols found in black tea also might help maintain a healthy gut by promoting the growth of good bacteria and discouraging the growth of bad bacteria, such as Salmonella. In addition, black tea contains antimicrobial properties that terminate harmful substances and improve gut bacteria & immunity by helping repair the lining of our digestive tract. However, further research is needed before a strong conclusion can be made regarding the role of black tea and immune function.
Can Help Reduce Blood Pressure
Hypertension or high blood pressure affects approximately 1 Billion people all over the globe. It might increase your risk of cardiac & kidney failure, vision loss, stroke & heart attacks. Fortunately, alterations in your diet and lifestyle can lower your blood pressure. A randomized & controlled study observed the role of black tea in decreasing blood pressure as participants drank three cups of black tea daily over six months. The results found that those who drank black tea had a significant decrease in systolic and diastolic blood pressure, as opposed to the control group. However, research on the effects of black tea on blood pressure is mixed. Consuming black tea daily, as well as incorporating other lifestyle & health modifications like stress management strategies, and exercise may help those with high blood pressure.
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