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Home » Health and Wellness » 6 Benefits Of Loose-Leaf Tea You Didn’t Know About
Tea is undoubtedly one of the most popular beverages in the world. In fact, it’s the second most popular beverage globally, only falling behind water. It’s been around a long time – 2,700 BC approximately – and has found its way into most corners of the world. Today, it’s become a staple in people’s everyday lives and purchases.
There are approximately 1,500 varieties of tea, the most common of which are black, green, white, and oolong. These tea categories differ based on how oxidized they are, with the degree of oxidation at its max in black tea.
Tea is typically available in loose form or tea bags. Due to fast-paced lifestyles, teabags have recently become a popular means of consuming tea due to how convenient and easy-to-make they are compared to loose-leaf tea.
On the other hand, though, loose-leaf tea presents an entirely different experience since you’re able to touch and smell the leaves, in addition to offering a wide range of health benefits for drinkers.
If you’re an avid tea drinker or thinking about adding this popular beverage to your daily routine, here are the benefits of loose-leaf tea you should know about.
Loose-leaf tea typically contains larger leaves and, due to this, it retains abundant plant polyphenols and catechin antioxidants. Hence, you’ll be able to take greater advantage of the health benefits tea has to offer.
These benefits include properties that can help reduce cholesterol levels, lower blood pressure, prevent some cancers, stimulate weight loss, and boost your immune system. Tea bags typically contain less of these properties; hence, you’ll always get a healthier brew with loose-leaf tea.
Apart from this, you may also be ingesting chemicals with tea bags without having any idea. Many tea bags may also contain epichlorohydrin, often used in pesticides. This compound becomes more active when it comes into contact with hot water, potentially leading to effects such as impaired immunity, increased risk of cancer, and infertility.
Compared to tea bags, loose-leaf tea retains its flavor and nutritional content for a longer time. This occurs because the herb and tea particles are so fine, they’re more exposed to air due to a larger surface area. Hence, this causes them to lose their freshness and flavor more rapidly than unprocessed leaves.
Even when it’s dried, loose-leaf tea tends to retain its essential oils, nutrients, and antioxidants. This kind of tea tends to give you a clean and fresh taste. Tea bags are typically mass-produced and travel long distances before reaching supermarket shelves, making them less fresh. Hence, tea bags typically taste old, fuzzy, bitter, stale, or muddy and have a distinct aroma that doesn’t smell very good.
On the other hand, depending on which tea you choose, you may also taste floral, earthy, malty, or sweet notes. Since it retains its properties for a longer period, it’s bound to give you a more flavorful and nutritious brew.
With loose-leaf tea, you can create your custom brew depending on what flavors you prefer. By making your own blend, you can also take advantage of the health benefits offered by different blends.
Since tea bags are filled with a specific amount of herbs or tea leaves, you won’t get anything extra, making their taste standard. Instead, you can choose how strong you want your tea depending on your mood by opting for loose-leaf tea.
It’s no secret that most people today prefer clean eating. With fewer additives in your food, you can know exactly what you’re consuming. Tea bags involve processing tea leaves or herbs to pack them in such a compact space.
Tea bags contain very fine tea particles called dust and fannings, which means broken, low-grade tea leaves. While you may be able to get high-quality tea bags from somewhere, most tea bags you find in-store use low-grade, processed tea.
With tea bags, you’re always limited to the varieties available in store. While supermarket varieties may seem extensive, you may find yourself getting bored with their taste quite quickly. Additionally, since they’re not as fresh and flavorful as loose-leaf tea, the taste may also not stand out as a beverage.
As mentioned earlier, tea has over a thousand varieties categorized under four main categories. There are many teas to explore since every culture has a unique way of cultivating and processing them. With loose-leaf tea, every brew will be an entirely new experience.
Most tea bags you’ll find in stores are manufactured with permeable and thin papers, often not biodegradable. These papers have harmful chemicals, disposal of which can then pollute the environment massively. In fact, every tea bag is made of varying levels of plastic, carton, and paper. These materials are eventually discarded in landfills.
In contrast, loose-leaf tea requires less packaging material compared to tea bags. While there are tea bags made of compostable and recyclable materials, these are still relatively difficult to find. Some manufacturers also use nylon and PET to make tea bags, which, again, are harmful to the environment.
Overall, loose-leaf tea provides a variety of benefits to anyone interested in a fresh cup of brew. From health benefits to a better conscience due to their less detrimental contribution to the environment, loose-leaf tea should definitely become a go-to choice. It’s easy to make and flavorful; exactly what you need after a long day or to get that much-needed boost in the morning!
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