Antioxidants make up the bedrock that are the health benefits of Tea. The vast majority of studies conducted on Tea today involve extensive research on the antioxidants found in these remarkable brews. But what exactly are antioxidants? And why are they so vital to one’s health?
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Antioxidants are components found in Tea, as well as a vast multitude of other “healthy” consumables, capable of inhibiting natural, though harmful, human oxidation. Oxidative stress on the body leads to the introduction of free radicals, which in turn are unpaired (and unstable) electrons that wreak havoc on the body when left unchecked.
The introduction of antioxidants through frequent Tea consumption, however, can slow down the damaging effects of oxidation by neutralising free radicals. The ultimate goal of this is to reduce the risks of developing numerous chronic conditions, namely cardiovascular disease and type-2 diabetes. Now, the question begs: is there any proof that Tea can help?
A recent meta-analysis of 13 Green Tea-related observational studies discovered that participants who drank the most Green Tea had a 28% lower risk of coronary artery disease. Another meta-analysis, this time on Tea in its entirety, found that those who drank multiple cups of Tea a day had a 21% lower cancer risk than those who drank none. The reason for this incredible outcome? Antioxidants.
While more research is undoubtedly needed before any form of scientific confirmation, these preliminary results appear more than promising. Better still, it’s the tip of the iceberg. Additionally, studies on Black Tea have explored the possibility of these beverages being able to enhance cognitive function owing to their abundance in antioxidants named theaflavin and thearubigin. Further still, White Tea, the least-oxidised Type of Tea and, in turn, the Tea with the highest level of antioxidants (even over Green Tea), can improve skin health by breaking down two proteins that lead to age-related wrinkles.
Herbal Teas also fare well when it comes to antioxidants, with some (not all) notables including Hibiscus Tea, Peppermint Tea, Turmeric Root Tea, Ginseng Root Tea and Yerba Mate. Each Tea - Black, Green, White, Oolong or Herbal - has its own extraordinary qualities, and each Tea has the potential of improving one’s everyday way of life.