Benefits of Loose Leaf Tea
Tea has been one of the most popular beverages in the world for thousands of years not only for the different flavors available, but for the health benefits as well. While there are hundreds (if not thousands) of different types of tea bags available, my new love is drinking loose leaf tea.
Despite tea companies touting their bagged tea as all-natural, one of the most overlooked aspects of bagged tea is the actual bag itself. The truth about tea bags is that many of the most popular brands are made of GMOs or—even worse—plastics.
When you purchase high end tea bags they often come in shiny “silk sachets” that may look luxurious, but these bags are actually made out of polylactic acid (PLA). PLA is a special type of polyester that is made from (most likely genetically modified) corn starch. When these types of plastics are placed in boiling water while steeping tea, there is a chance that molecules begin to leech into the water; with the risk of carcinogenic compounds leaking into your tea, how healthy can tea bags really be?
Not only do the tea bags themselves present a problem, the actual tea itself inside of tea bags isn’t always what you would assume, either. Many flavored teas inside of tea bags have artificial flavoring, “natural flavors” and other GMO derived compounds to alter the taste of the tea and some bagged teas have even tested positive for pesticide residue. All of these extra chemicals added to tea bags counteract the natural benefits of tea.
That’s why I have moved on to drinking loose leaf tea. With loose leaf tea not only do you have a huge selection of distinct and unique flavors to choose from, you can always be sure of what exactly you are drinking. The simple benefit of loose leaf tea not containing any harmful pesticides, GMO compounds, or artificial flavors makes switching to loose leaf tea the easy and obvious choice.
When choosing loose leaf teas always make sure you choose an organic brand; this guarantees the tea you are drinking is just tea and you are consuming all of the vitamins and minerals that tea offers without the risk of drinking harmful chemicals. Here are a few of my favorite teas and some of the benefits that they provide:
- Lavender Tea – One of the most common herbal teas, the benefits of lavender tea are almost too long to list. Most people drink lavender tea for the calming, relaxing effect that it provides. Not only does a cup of lavender tea help you relax, it also promotes digestion and can be used to naturally relieve headaches.
- Mint Tea – One of the most well-known benefits of mint tea is its ability to soothe an upset stomach. Chemicals released when steeping mint leaves help counteract too excess acid in the stomach which not only deals with stomach pains but helps with heart burn as well. Additionally, mint tea can be used to promote focus and give you a mental edge in the workplace, when studying, or anytime you need to stay alert.
- Rose Hip Tea – Less common than lavender or mint teas, the benefits of rose hip tea are slightly less well known, but are extremely helpful to your body. Rose hip tea contains a large amount of antioxidants and phytochemicals like ellagic acid and lycopene that help fight cancer cells. Additionaly, rose hip tea is high in vitamin C which helps boost the immune system.
- Longan Tea – Longan tea is made from steeping longan, a fruit indigenous to Southeast Asia, in hot water. Longan tea benefits include being a blood tonic due to its chemical properties and high iron count, as well as its calming ability which leads to a lower risk of heart-related issues.
- Osmanthus Flower – Osmanthus tea is one of the lesser known herbal teas outside of China but provides many benefits for the body. One of the best uses for osmanthus flower is to treat colds. Osmanthus flower tea benefits the body by reducing mucus when you are sick which can help soothe inflamed lungs and reduce coughing.
- Osmanthus tea is also believed to remove nitric oxide which may reduce the risk of certain cancers and even diabetes.
- Floral Awakening – Floral awakening is a tea blend that combines the benefits of rose petals, which help prevent cancer and remove toxins from the body, as well as osmanthus flowers which can soothe the lungs, fight off colds, and prevent illnesses like cancer and diabetes.
While all of these teas contain a wide range of benefits, it’s important to note using loose leaf tea not only allows you to drink tea without ingesting any harmful chemicals, you also have the ability to mix and match teas to provide you with a unique flavor and a combination of benefits. Here are a few of my favorite loose leaf tea blends:
Sweet Energy Blend: 1/2 Tsp of Floral Awakening, 3 Dried Logan, small bunch of mint leaves and stems and 1 stick of cinnamon or sprinkle of powered cinnamon. Pour hot water over the blend, let steep for 4-5 minutes, strain and then serve.
Lavender Bliss Blend: 1/2 tsp of Lavender, 1/2 tsp of Rooibos, 1 tsp of Goji Berries and 1/2 tsp of Osmanthus Flower. Pour hot water over the blend, let steep for 4-5 minutes, strain and then serve.
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