Many countries come to mind at the mention of the word tea. There’s India, or Great Britain, or even the United States. And while the exact origins of tea are unknown, the most widely accepted story comes from a Chinese legend.
The legend says that in 2737 BC, Chinese emperor Shen Nung was sitting under a tree while his servant boiled water for him, when suddenly some leaves fell into the water. The emitting aroma was pleasant, so the emperor decided to try the concoction. Alas, tea came to be.
Of course, there is no way to know whether this story is fact or fiction, but no historian can deny the ancient roots tea has in this Asian country. It was established as a beverage centuries before you could order it at your local corporate coffee shop. For this, we are undeniably thankful.
While this drink has been a worldwide staple beverage for a long time, its popularity only seems to be increasing. Coffee connoisseurs have been around for a while, but more recently, tea aficionados have become a norm too.
But with this wide-spreading popularity, it’s important to recognize that not all teas are the same, and not all of them even serve the same purpose. Some teas have relaxing properties, while others have enough caffeine to energize you for the day. Here’s a quick guide on the most common types of tea and the purposes they serve.
Starting the list is the mother of all teas, green tea. Known for its mellow grassy taste, this tea has countless benefits. These include improved brain function, fat loss, detox effects, and protection against several illnesses including cancer and diabetes. However, despite what some may say, green tea does in fact contain caffeine. So, make sure you’re not drinking a cup in order to feel relaxed. Instead of having a cup before bed, consider having a cup before you go on your morning run.
English Breakfast Tea
English breakfast tea (which is made by combining different black teas) is the perfect way to start the day, especially if you add a bit of cream and honey to it. It’s also a good substitute for coffee for those trying to decrease their caffeine intake.
The tea contains many healthy antioxidants and minerals, including flavonoids, magnesium, lipoproteins, potassium, and many more. These can help lower one’s chances of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and cancer. Additionally, it can help lower cholesterol levels. So, jump on the English tea train and sip away.
Known for its spicy but sweet flavor, ginger tea has a considerable fan base that continues to grow—and with good reason too, as this beverage has a lot of interesting benefits. One of them is that it can help with motion sickness and nausea. So, for pregnant women or people who hate long car rides, this tea can be a real life-saver.
Additionally, ginger tea can help with blood-pressure and heart health, as well as weight and blood sugar control. It also seems to be a natural pain reliever. And it does not contain any caffeine, so you can unwind with a warm cup before going to sleep.
Chai tea has almost become a drink of its own category. Whether you prefer it sweet or spicy, you cannot deny its deliciousness and apparent health benefits.
There’s evidence that this drink can help improve heart health, including the potential to lower blood pressure. It’s also been known to help reduce blood sugar levels and can be good for digestion. However, it is important to note that this does contain a good amount of caffeine, so limit the amount of chai teas you allow yourself in one day.
Nothing like the classics. Black tea still reigns supreme as the most popular in the world. And it’s not hard to see why, for this delicious beverage can be enjoyed hot or iced and with or without sugar. Although the southern part of the country has established it as one of its staple beverages, it’s consumed in most every corner of the planet.
Fortunately, it’s also packed with benefits—such as improving heart and gut health, lowering bad cholesterol, and improving focus.
Last but not least, we have chamomile tea. Known for its calming and relaxing properties, it’s probably the most popular of the herbal drinks. It has a sweet floral flavor and is usually consumed hot.
Because of its soothing properties, it’s a great drink to enjoy before bedtime. And some studies have even shown it can help with depression and anxiety symptoms. So, if you ever find yourself in a low or agitated state, try a warm cup of this and it might just provide the comforting properties you need.