Black tea is one of the oldest beverages in the world, and over the past few decades it has only become more popular. Many individuals turn to black tea as an alternative to coffee, while others drink it after meals to aid digestion. However you take it, though, you can be sure that black tea has multiple health benefits – some of which may surprise you!
From preventing cardiovascular disease to inhibiting the spread of cancer, black tea is certainly more than just a tasty drink. Here’s a quick look at some of the therapeutic functions of black tea:
1. Anti-Cancer Agent
Polyphenols in black tea – as well as in green tea – serve to regulate cancer cell growth, survival, and metastasis, effectively inhibiting the growth and spread of cancerous cells in the body.
A 2006 paper, published in the journal Anticancer Agents in Medical Chemistry, explored the relationship between black tea and the decreased frequency of cancer development, concluding that there is a probable connection between these factors(1).
2. Prevents Cardiovascular Disease
A study published in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews examined the connection between black tea and the prevention of cardiovascular disease. Although they were working with limited evidence, the trials did suggest that black tea had “favourable effects” on risk factors for cardiovascular disease(2).
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While more research remains to be done, the outcome of this study was significant in indicating that black tea can work to prevent cardiovascular disease.
3. Reduces Your Risk Of Heart Attacks
Consumption has been found to lower levels of LDL cholesterol in hypercholesterolemic adults, according to a 2003 study published in the Journal of Nutrition(3).
By lowering your levels of LDL cholesterol, it can significantly reduce your risk of heart disease and cardiac events, especially when paired with a moderately low-fat diet.
4. Chock Full of Antioxidants
It is an especially effective antioxidant beverage, due in particular to the polyphenols – such as theaflavins and thearubigins – contained in the tea(4). Antioxidants inhibit the generation of free radicals, slowing the ageing process and reducing your risk of developing cancer.
Now that you know the health benefits, you can enjoy it guilt-free; it’s better for you than soda, and easy to prepare. Simply boil a kettle full of water and pour it over the tea, either loose or in a tea bag, and let it steep for five to ten minutes, depending on how strong you like your tea. It can be sweetened with honey for those who prefer a sweeter, milder tea.