Who doesn’t love a rich and robust black tea blend first thing in the morning? The infusion of caffeine and antioxidants awakens the senses, providing a gentle energy boost. Some people like to sip the dark elixir either plain or with a splash of milk. Either way, black tea is enjoyed by everyone. While tea lovers enjoy drinking it, most of them don’t know that there are several health benefits of black tea!
Did you know black tea is fermented from the leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant? Maitry Gala, Senior Nutrition Therapist, Fortis Hospital, Mulund, Mumbai tells Health Shots that black tea is one of the most popular teas around the world and is among the four types made using the Camellia Sinensis plant leaves.
5 health benefits of black tea
While black tea undergoes oxidation, which gives it some added benefits, green Tea does not undergo oxidation. During oxidation, catechins are converted into thearubigins, theaflavins, and flavonols, absent in green tea. Black tea is loaded with antioxidants and offers several health benefits.
Here are 5 benefits of black tea you should know:
1. Improves gut health
Black tea is rich in an antioxidant named Polyphenol, which helps reduce oxidative stress, reducing the risk of chronic diseases and improving a person’s overall health. Polyphenols and antimicrobial properties can help improve gut health and boost immunity.
2. Reduces cholesterol
Black tea is prepared from fully fermented leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant. It contains catechins and Theaflavins, which help lower your cholesterol levels.
3. Promotes heart health
Flavonoids in black tea may help reduce cholesterol levels, control blood pressure, and eventually reduce the risk of heart-related diseases
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4. Improves focus
Do you find it difficult to stay awake throughout the day? Do you feel less energetic these days? Why don’t you try to give your health a boost with black tea? It contains caffeine and L-theanine – an amino acid content of Black Tea, to improve alertness and focus.
5. Aids weight loss
A low-calorie, non-sweetened beverage, black tea is an excellent option for people. Flavones have also been associated with weight, BMI, and waist circumference reductions. Since flavones are present in black tea, they are suitable for belly fat reduction and weight reduction, especially when combined with a proper diet and an exercise regime, adds the expert.
Side effects of drinking black tea
While black tea offers many health benefits, nutrition therapist Maitry Gala explains that people who are anemic or iron-deficient should consume this drink in limited quantities. It contains tannins that bind with plant-based iron and affect its absorption in the digestive tract. It is also highly recommended that this drink is consumed between meals. Here are the side effects of drinking black tea as explained by Gala:
- Excess tannins may irritate the digestive tract, especially for those with a weak gut, leading to stomach aches/ vomiting/ aggravated diarrhoea, etc.
- Overconsumption of caffeine may increase anxiety and restlessness.
- Black tea may reduce melatonin production, thereby disrupting the sleep cycle.
- It may contribute to complications in pregnant ladies, such as miscarriage or low infant birth weight.
- Excess caffeine may lead to heart burns or aggravate pre-existing acid reflux.
The best time to drink black tea
Black tea can be an excellent addition to your diet, considering how beneficial it is for your health. While it is safe to drink, people should make sure that they drink it in moderation. However, since black tea contains caffeine, children must avoid black tea. Adults can drink 2-3 cups every day, and avoid excess consumption of the drink as it can lead to side effects, says the expert.
If you’re wondering when is the right time to drink black tea, it is best to drink it in the morning, recommends Gala. Starting your day with black tea will help increase alertness and hydrate the body. It will provide instant energy to your body that will help you kickstart your day.