The Benefits Of Drinking Tea & Some Tips

The Benefits Of Drinking Tea & Some Tips

(a 12 minute read)

Tea is the second most consumed beverage in the world after water, and from sugary Turkish Rize tea, to salty Tibetan butter tea, there are almost as many ways of preparing the beverage as there are cultures on the globe.

During a long day spent roaming the forest in search of edible grains and herbs, the weary divine farmer Shennong accidentally poisoned himself 72 times. But before the poisons could end his life, a leaf drifted into his mouth. He chewed on it and it revived him, and that is how we discovered tea. Or so an ancient legend goes at least. Tea doesn't actually cure poisonings, but the story of Shennong, the mythical Chinese inventor of agriculture, highlights tea's importance to ancient China. Archaeological evidence suggests tea was first cultivated there as early as 6,000 years ago, or 1,500 years before the pharaohs built the Great Pyramids of Giza.

different variants of tea and if they are healthy for you

That original Chinese tea plant is the same type that's grown around the world today, yet it was originally consumed very differently. It was eaten as a vegetable or cooked with grain porridge. Tea only shifted from food to drink 1,500 years ago when people realized that a combination of heat and moisture could create a complex and varied taste out of the leafy green. After hundreds of years of variations to the preparation method, the standard became to heat tea, pack it into portable cakes, grind it into powder, mix with hot water, and create a beverage called muo cha, or matcha. Matcha became so popular that a distinct Chinese tea culture emerged.

Tea was the subject of books and poetry, the favorite drink of emperors, and a medium for artists. They would draw extravagant pictures in the foam of the tea, very much like the espresso art you might see in coffee shops today. In the 9th century during the Tang Dynasty, a Japanese monk brought the first tea plant to Japan. The Japanese eventually developed their own unique rituals around tea, leading to the creation of the Japanese tea ceremony.

And in the 14th century during the Ming Dynasty, the Chinese emperor shifted the standard from tea pressed into cakes to loose leaf tea.

the origins of tea consumption and what we can learn from it


The British Tea Culture

At that point, China still held a virtual monopoly on the world's tea trees, making tea one of three essential Chinese export goods, along with porcelain and silk.

This gave China a great deal of power and economic influence as tea drinking spread around the world. That spread began in earnest around the early 1600s when Dutch traders brought tea to Europe in large quantities. Many credit Queen Catherine of Braganza, a Portuguese noble woman, for making tea popular with the English aristocracy when she married King Charles II in 1661.

how china's tea endes up in europe during colonization

At the time, Great Britain was in the midst of expanding its colonial influence and becoming the new dominant world power. And as Great Britain grew, interest in tea spread around the world. By 1700, tea in Europe sold for ten times the price of coffee and the plant was still only grown in China. The tea trade was so lucrative that the world's fastest sailboat, the clipper ship, was born out of intense competition between Western trading companies.

All were racing to bring their tea back to Europe first to maximize their profits.

At first, Britain paid for all this Chinese tea with silver. When that proved too expensive, they suggested trading tea for another substance, opium. This triggered a public health problem within China as people became addicted to the drug. Then in 1839, a Chinese official ordered his men to destroy massive British shipments of opium as a statement against Britain's influence over China.

This act triggered the First Opium War between the two nations. Fighting raged up and down the Chinese coast until 1842 when the defeated Qing Dynasty ceded the port of Hong Kong to the British and resumed trading on unfavorable terms. The war weakened China's global standing for over a century. The British East India company also wanted to be able to grow tea themselves and further control the market. So they commissioned botanist Robert Fortune to steal tea from China in a covert operation.

chinese tea exports and vintage tea cups are available with free shipping

He disguised himself and took a perilous journey through China's mountainous tea regionseventually smuggling tea trees and experienced tea workers into Darjeeling, India. From there, the plant spread further still, helping drive tea's rapid growth as an everyday commodity.

The British way of preparing tea was largely adopted by the East Frisian tea culture: Brits almost exclusively drink black tea, preferably unflavored, although the well-known Earl Gray tea is named after a British man. Strong varieties are preferred, not necessarily the highest quality ones. Loose tea leaves (since the 20th century also tea bags) are placed in the pot and scalded with boiling water, where they stay, so that the tea gradually becomes stronger and stronger. For this reason, additional hot water is sometimes added.


Our English Tea Recommendation is Harney & Sons English Breakfast


Blue Zone Okinawa and Their Use Of Tea

There are certain areas in the world where people regularly live longer lives, called the Blue Zones - One of these Blue Zones is Okinawa, Japan.

why people in the blue zones tend to live longer that the average human being

If we take a closer look at what these people are doing differently than the rest of the world, you'll quickly notice that their diets are high in fresh food, they engage with their communities and feel a really strong bond and connection towards their loved ones. Because of these factors mixed with physical exercise, they're not only living longer but they're also living healthier and they're actually less likely to have a disability or be dependent on pharmaceutical medication. 

Okinawan people actively engage in their community whether that be spiritual or social. Humans are social animals after all, which means we naturally feel an urge to conversate, help each other and see their loved ones strive. Social media has been negatively influencing “real” relationships and bonds throughout the past years. More and more kids and teenagers develop poor communication skills and severe anxiety in real-world scenarios. Connecting on a deeper level, having fantastic discussions and listening for the sake of listening and not answering are just some factors to consider next time you visit a social gathering. 

Okinawa secrets to a happy, healthy and long life

Furthermore, they eat mainly a plant-based diet consisting of organic foods. There’s excellent scientific evidence that many chronic diseases can be prevented, controlled, or even reversed with a whole-food, plant-based diet. Scientific research highlighted in the landmark book The China Study shows that a plant-based diet can reduce the risk of type-2 diabetes, heart disease, certain types of cancer, and other major illnesses. Many people also report bigger fitness payoffs, more energy, reduced inflammation, and better health outcomes after making the switch. Tea is a very popular beverage in Japan and Okinawans definitely utilize the many benefits it brings. No matter if matcha, green tea or herbal tea - the ingredients cleanse our bodies (provided you don’t use sugar). 


Our favorite Japanese Tea is Green Tea Loose Leaf Sencha Bulk


And finally we have to talk about the number #1 danger to our body and mind. Stress. We should only experience the stress we willingly bring upon ourselves. There’s a difference between healthy and unhealthy stress. Okinawans seek purpose in life and to reach their goals it’s definitely beneficial to have some stress in their day to day lives. Nonetheless, do we have to differentiate between the levels and kinds of stress. Stress that robs precious deep-sleep and makes us forget to eat is definitely bad. Stress that makes us more productive, energized and focused is good.

how tea can help to reduce stress throughout your work days


The Benefits Of Tea

According to the Tea Association of the USA, the number of Americans who will drink tea today is about 160 million, about half of the U.S. population. And, 2012 continued with the trend of increased consumer purchases of tea — surpassing the $2.25 billion mark in retail supermarket sales.

The strongest evidence is on the side of heart health, attributed to the antioxidants in tea. Flavonoids in both black and green tea prevent oxidation of LDL, or “bad” cholesterol, reduce blood clotting and improve widening of blood vessels in the heart. Studies that looked at the relationship of black tea intake and heart health reported decreased incidence of heart attack, lower cholesterol levels and significantly lower blood pressure.

benefits of regularly drinking green tea, matcha or herbal tea

Evidence supporting tea as a weight-loss aid is based mainly on studies that used tea extracts (ECGC and other catechins, flavanols, polyphenols and caffeine). These results may not be directly applicable to brewed tea consumed in normal amounts.

The caffeine content of tea varies widely depending on the kind of tea used and the way in which it is brewed. Typical levels for tea are less than half that of coffee, ranging from 20 to 60 milligrams per 8 ounces (compared to 50 to 300 milligrams in coffee). Studies found no negative effects on hydration with intakes of up to 400 milligrams of caffeine per day (the amount in about seven cups of the strongest brewed tea).

Antioxidants work to prevent the body’s version of rust and thus help to keep us young and protect us from damage from pollution. Load up on antioxidants with a white tea, which is less processed than black or green tea so it retains more beneficial antioxidants.

Herbal blends have no caffeine, while traditional teas have less than 50% of what typically is found in coffee. That means you can consume it without those pesky effects on your nervous system, says Leslie Bonci, nutritionist and owner of Active Eating Advice. If you're trying to switch from coffee to tea, try a chicory root tea like Teeccino, which has a mouth feel and flavor similar to coffee. Chicory root is also known to help reduce stress and is a prebiotic so may be helpful to your gut.


Surprise a loved one with our favorite Tea Gift Set or simply get this Ginger Peach I’ve been recently using myself!


Japanese researchers have found that tea can decrease tooth loss, it changes the pH in your mouth when you drink it and that may be what prevents cavities. Beyond that, tea, unlike many other beverages, does not appear to erode tooth enamel.

is tea healthy? we discuss the pros and cons in our blog post

We don’t claim tea to be the #1 medicine against severe illnesses or teeth lose. There are so many factors playing important roles when our body slowly starts to age. In those cases you won’t fully heal until you visit the doctor. Implement tea into your daily routine and see for yourself if it benefits your lifestyle and overall health. But don’t take the risk to put all your hopes into a natural way of healing if you are diagnosed with a tumor for example.


In case you are craving a cup of tea, make sure to check out our Vintage 360° Tea Cup Set and convince yourself of the magic a teaparty can generate. 

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