Try This At Home: 5 Reasons to Brew a Cup of Tea


| October/November 2008


1. Relax

In Chinese medicine, tea is said to produce “relaxed alertness.” A cup of black tea contains about half the caffeine of a cup of coffee. But drink two cups of black tea, and you feel less of a buzz than you would from one cup of coffee. That’s because tea also contains the calming compound L-theanine. British researchers gave 75 men either tea or a caffeinated beverage with the same amount of caffeine. Compared with those drinking the other beverage, the tea drinkers reported feeling less stressed and more relaxed. —Michael Castleman

2. Rejuvenate

Buddhists traditionally drank tea during meditation. In the 12th century, the Japanese combined Buddhist beliefs and tea drinking into a ceremony of spiritual rejuvenation and universal harmony: The Japanese Tea Ceremony still is practiced today.

3. Nourish

Rooibos, a traditional South African beverage made from Aspalathus linearis, tastes much like black tea but contains no caffeine and is low in tannins. The reddish brew is rich in vitamin C, minerals and a potent antioxidant called aspalathin that is found only in rooibos.

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