After water, tea is the maximum drunk beverage in the world. Across the globe, the refreshing drink is consumed due to different notional, yet unvalidated reasons. Many false concepts and ideas have been spread for a long time without much cross-checking the facts. When it comes to tea, nowadays we have more than 100 types of Teas consumed, due to various perceived, medicinal properties. Most of these have no scientific basis. I have tried to bust the most popular 6 myths that I have come across. Hope this may be informative.
Myth No. 1 – Detox tea cleanses the body from toxins
We have seen lots of advertisements for Detox tea and its claim of its ability to remove toxins from the body almost as a magic potion. The target group is mostly the urban, internet-savvy, health-conscious, young, and middle-aged educated consumers who want to restart themselves almost quickly and easily. This product has been endorsed by celebrities on social media as a testimony of its workability.
Most of us are aware that tea extracted from the shrub Camellia Sinensis is healthy as they are rich in antioxidants and help in the prevention and reduction of cardiovascular diseases and even aid in lowering blood pressure when consumed regularly in moderate quantities.
The promotion content of Detox teas is added benefits due to the presence of herbs like lemongrass, ginger, dandelion leaf, milk thistle, senna leaf, or nettle leaf. Some are either diuretic (nettle leaf or dandelion leaf) and a few are laxative (senna leaf).
In reality, such diuretics or laxatives help in temporary reduction of weight but that is due to loss of body waste and water. Also, scientific researches till now could not provide any evidence that this kind of tea can really help remove toxins from the body.
As per nutritionists, the weight loss due to detox teas come with their own share of side effects, which may be harmful in the long run.
Myth No. 2 – Green Tea helps lose Weight.
There are many health benefits of green tea including stimulants that improve our metabolism. The reality is, not only Green tea, but all Camelia Sinensis tea varieties help in weight maintenance of the body. However, an important point is tea is not a wonder element that can alone replace the work done by healthy diets & physical exercises. The main thing is to combine the consumption of tea with a healthy diet and regular physical activity.
Myth No. 3 – Mint tea is good for curing all kinds of Stomach problems.
Peppermint (Mentha piperita) is a popular flavoring for tea, also used to aid digestion. Here, the reality is that for a normal healthy stomach mint tea can be useful for aiding digestion but for a poor stomach that is aggravated by Gastrointestinal Reflux Disease (GERD), (otherwise known as Heartburn) this selection can be an incorrect one.
Ginger tea can be a better alternative for that matter.
Myth No. 4 – Tea dehydrates!
Tea is a caffeinated drink that can aid in dehydration. Caffeine is a diuretic compound. So, how come drinking tea can help us stay hydrated.
What is a diuretic? A diuretic is a substance that causes our body to produce more urine. The caffeine in teas causes them to urinate more frequently, which may appear to affect the hydration level of the consumers.
Here, the reality is that the average cup of tea (240ml) contains only around 33–38 mg of caffeine — with black and oolong tea containing the maximum. The so-called diuretic effect due to drinking a cup of tea is actually minimal as compared to a cup of coffee (that provides 100- 200mg of caffeine).
Myth No. 5 – Teabags are no different from loose leaf teas.
I have a question for teabag lovers. Next time before dipping your favorite tea bag do a bit of research –
Which tea bags contain plastics?
To avoid plastics tea bag manufacturers have tea bags in cloth material also.
The reality is there 2 reasons I normally prefer loose leaf tea over the teabag.
One is the health hazard part of the tea drinkers, The second reason is that the loose leaf tea provides a richer and fuller flavor compared to teabag.
The benefit of a tea bag is that it is easy to use. But let us understand what is inside the bag. A tea bag typically contains lower-grade dust or fannings of tea, made from broken tea leaves, which may lack the aroma and the essential oil.
Typically a natural loose leaf tea needs proper space to expand during the steeping time. The teabag, on the other hand, lacks the inside space required by the tea to expand and mix with the water for a quality brew output.
Myth No. 6 – Milk tea has no health benefits.
Most of the time in India, we are told often that milk tea is a source of acidity and other health issues. As per an article published in Times of India, when milk is added to tea, there will be no reduction in its health benefits. Milk as we all know is a source of protein, calcium, potassium & other essential nutrients that are good for our body. As per a study published in a journal, the number of catechins absorbed from tea does not reduce after the addition of milk.
Milk tea properly made can be a great stress buster, in my case, milk tea with spices helps immediately to uplift my mood.