Discover The Awesome World of Black Teas and What They Can Do For You

Discover The Awesome World Of Black Teas And What They Can Do For You

When it’s cold outside, it makes sense that you’ll want to warm up with a cup of something hot; but sometimes you don’t want coffee or hot chocolate. So what do you do? You’ll probably reach for your favorite glass teapot infuser or tea kettle, fill it with water, and put your favorite type of tea in a mug. However, what do you do when you’re tired of the same old green tea or other varieties? Have you ever tried black teas or other black tea recipes?

Black Tea with flavoring around it

If you’re an avid tea drinker, you probably have. However, if you are unfamiliar with black teas, or tea in general, you may be wondering, “What is black tea?” Well, you’re in the right place, because we’re going to talk to you about black tea. By the end of this article, we are confident that you’ll be more than willing to give black teas a shot!

What is Black Tea?

Black tea is just one type of tea. There are four types of tea that come from the Camellia Senesis plant. These types of tea are:

  • ​White teas
  • Oolong teas
  • Green teas
  • Black teas
4 types of tea on a table with leaves

Of all the tea that is drunk in the world, black teas are one of the most popular. These teas are made by oxidizing the tea leaf, meaning they go through a drying process that allows them to wilt and get brown after they’ve been harvested. During the oxidation process, two compounds are formed: theaflavins and thearubigins, which give your tea it’s distinct flavor and color. Some even believe these two compounds could be credited to some health benefits as well.

You may have thought to yourself, “Does black tea have caffeine in it?” Perhaps you even wondered how much caffeine is in black tea. Well, of course, there is caffeine in black tea—even if you want decaffeinated black tea! There is about 2 to 4% (14 to 61mg of caffeine per 8 ounces, whereas brewed coffee, contains 95 to 200mg caffeine per 8 ounces) caffeine in black tea. This means you can expect to feel caffeine related effects like being more alert, urinating more frequently, and your thought processes may be a little clearer.

If you ask us, frequent urination is a fair trade off for the health benefits drinking black teas. Speaking health benefits, let’s discuss them now!

Health Benefits of Black Tea

If you’re trying to stay healthy and make a valiant effort of understanding the effects the food and drink you put into your body, then you might be thinking to yourself, “What is black tea good for?” It’s good for a lot of things!

For one thing, according to a British study, if you brew your black tea at a low temperature (around 90°C, or 194°F), you are increasing the release of antioxidants from the tea. These antioxidants, called flavonoids are credited to some things such as:

  • Aging – Women are always looking for ways to reverse the signs of aging, if only they knew that by drinking black tea can be used to reduce visible signs of aging, such as wrinkles or the reduction of elasticity in the skin.
  • Bone Density – By drinking black tea, you can increase the strength of your bones and reduce the risk of having a bone fracture. There have been studies that show regular (six or more years) tea drinkers have overall better bone mineral density than those who don’t drink tea. If you drink for 10 or more years, your risks of bone fractures and even osteoporosis decrease exponentially!
  • ​Bone Density – By drinking black tea, you can increase the strength of your bones and reduce the risk of having a bone fracture. There have been studies that show regular (six or more years) tea drinkers have overall better bone mineral density than those who don’t drink tea. If you drink for 10 or more years, your risks of bone fractures and even osteoporosis decrease exponentially!
  • ​Detoxification – Protects your cells from free radicals, which could lead to the formation of blood clots, atherosclerosis, and even cancer.
  • Diabetes – Black teas contain strong polysaccharides (the carbohydrates that decrease blood sugar absorption), thus being a great benefit for those who battle diabetes. If you drink the tea regularly, you may even stave off diabetes entirely.
  • ​Heart Health – If you drink black tea regularly (three cups per day), you have an 11% chance of decreasing your risk of developing cardiovascular diseases like heart attacks and strokes.
  • Muscle Restoration – After a strenuous workout, drinking black tea has been found to reduce the feeling of muscle soreness greatly. It’ll also help shorting the recovery time your body needs post-workout.
  • Stress Relief – While drinking black tea on a regular basis will not reduce how you react to stressors, but it can lower your cortisol (the hormone responsible for stress) much quicker, helping you feel normal faster.
  • Weight Loss – With all of these great benefits, is black tea good for weight loss? Yes, it is! Since black tea helps your body regulate the amount of sugar in the blood, it can be responsible for leaving you feeling satisfied, leaving you to crave sugar less. Also, research credits the low amount of caffeine for increased energy and the high amount of antioxidants that can boost your metabolism for weight loss.

Is Black Tea Safe During Pregnancy?

With so many great benefits of drinking black tea, you might be wondering if it is safe to drink black tea during pregnancy. To that, we say yes, you can drink black tea while you’re pregnant, but you should exceed three cups in one day. The caffeine in the tea could increase the risk of a miscarriage and increased risks of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). Other side effects that could happen to your child after it's born to include caffeine withdrawal and low birth weight.

Pregnant Woman Drinking Tea

Also, if you are breastfeeding your baby, you will want to refrain from drinking more than three cups of tea per day because the caffeine your child will ingest through your breastmilk could cause them to become more irritable and have more frequent bowel movements.

What Happens if You Drink Too Much Black Tea?

If you’re wanting a tea with a full-bodied, rich flavor with a little bit of caffeine, then black teas are an awesome option. However, when you’re going for that third mug of tea, you might be wondering if you should be worried about if there are any black tea side effects, sort of like what you may expect with drinking too much coffee.

After Effects of Overcaffenation

Well, WebMD states that there are some possible side effects associated with drinking more than five cups of black tea—especially if it contains more than 10 grams of caffeine. This amount of caffeine is credited to severe side effects and possibly even death!

So, what are the possible side effects?

  • Anemia – If you have an iron deficiency, drinking a lot of black tea could make it worse.
  • Anxiety – Too much black tea can make your anxiety and anxiety disorders worse.
  • Bleeding disorders – The caffeine in black tea could slow down blood clotting
  • Heart problems – While black tea can help cardiovascular health, too much can be harmful.​
  • Diabetes – Again, too much of a good thing can be bad for you.
  • Diarrhea – Caffeine in the tea could intensify diarrhea.
  • Seizures – Caffeine could cause seizures, or decrease an anti-seizure medication’s effectiveness.
  • Glaucoma – Caffeinated tea increases pressure in eyes and can last between 30 to 90 minutes.
  • Hormone Conditions – The tea can act like estrogen, which may worsen hormone-sensitive issues.
  • High Blood Pressure – Caffeine may increase pre-existing instances of high blood pressure.

With so many negative side effects, you may think that you shouldn’t even think about touching black tea, right? Well, as with anything good in life, the key is moderation! If you drink more than five cups of black tea, you could experience some of these side effects, and you may not. It depends on how your body reacts to the caffeine, which is the primary route of all of these side effects.

Conclusion

Trying to stay healthy in a world that is over-saturated with sugary beverages can be a challenge. You could purchase black teas that are available in your convenience stores, but those too are filled with sugar, preservatives, and other stuff that may not be the greatest for you.

If you want to reap all the benefits that black teas have to offer, then your best bet would be to brew some of your own. Just remember, you don’t want to exceed 40 ounces of tea per day, lest you start experiencing any of those not-so-pleasant side effects!

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