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Faq's

1. Why is Ceylon Tea different?

Tea originated in China, as legend has it, 5,000 years ago; yet it was Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) that made tea famous in the 19th and 20th Centuries, as the tea that was used by almost every major tea brand. Ceylon Tea is prized for its quality which is without parallel, and its variety which is unmatched for a small island boasting dramatically different teas in different parts of its tea growing regions.

In assessing the value of Ceylon tea, some of the properties which tea experts take into consideration are appearance of the tea such as, colour of the infused leaf, as well as colour, strength, quality, aroma and flavour of the brewed liquor. The ultimate criterion of a ‘good quality’ tea is however the subjective assessment of expert professional tea tasters.

Distinguishing itself as the ‘Best in Class’ producer of tea, with a well-documented heritage in tea, Ceylon, or Sri Lanka stands out amongst tea producers. The Low Grown teas produced in Sri Lanka below 2000-ft sea level, are known for their superior leaf appearance, highly valued in the Middle East, the coppery ‘infused leaf’ and its strong & reddish brewed liquor. Sri Lankan low growns are prized for their appearance -‘uniformly black’, true to grade and devoid of fibre and extraneous matter. The High Growns, above 4000-ft sea level, on the other hand are known for their bright, coloury, brisk and aromatic liquors. High grown Ceylon teas do not share the dense, black colour of the quality low grown leaf being browner in leaf appearance, but have unsurpassed liquors ranging from light, bright golden colour to deep red. In Ceylon, particular emphasis is laid on the quality of tea, and this is determined by a complex of parameters, the correct balance of which is the quintessence of tea character. The appearance of the leaf (dry leaf after processing) is determined by the content of chlorophyll in the young and tender leaves of the tea shoot. The relative amounts of the polyphenols present in tea, the polyphenol oxidase (enzyme), the theaflavins, thearubigins, caffeine, essential oils, sugars, amino acids in the bud and the first two tender leaves will all contribute to the quality of the brewed liquor in a positive way. Hence the importance of traditional and disciplined picking of teas in Ceylon. The best raw material handled under poor conditions of manufacture would produce a poor quality tea. It is through attention to detail in field practices as well as in manufacture, that Sri Lanka retains its position as the Best in Class’ producer of Quality Tea, considered by the Technical Committee of the ISO as the cleanest tea in the world.

2. What makes tea a healthy beverage?

Compounds naturally present in tea called poly phenols which function as antioxidants.

3. Are there GMO Free Tea?

Ceylon Tea is grown only conventionally. Therefore, all Ceylon Teas are GMO free.

4. What is caffeine?

Caffeine is a stimulant found in tea as well as in many other natural substances. Other natural sources of caffeine include; Coffee, chocolate and yerba (a herbal drink in parts of South America). Caffeine is also added to many foods and drugs including soft drinks and pain relievers.

5. How much caffeine is there in tea?

Caffeine from natural sources has been consumed and enjoyed by humans throughout the world for centuries. The widespread natural occurrence of caffeine in a variety of plants undoubtedly played a major role in the long-standing popularity of caffeine incorporated products, especially the beverages.

The human body requires a certain amount of caffeine and research indicates that up to 10 – 12 cups of tea daily will not have any detrimental effect on the body. The species or the variety of the tea plant determines content of caffeine in tea, as it is a genetic feature. Camellia Sinensis, the variety that is grown in Sri Lanka has caffeine levels of approximately 2.5 – 4%. However the distribution of caffeine in the plant depends on the part of the plant it is derived from.

For example:
• Bud 4.70 %
• First leaf 4.20 %
• Second Leaf 3.50 %
• Third Leaf 2.90 %
• Upper stem 2.50 %
• Lower stem 1.40 %

Both tea and coffee contain the methylated xanthines, caffeine, theophylline and theobromine. Brewed coffee is said to have the highest caffeine content among those dietary items containing caffeine- approx. 100 mg per cup. A 300-ml bottle of cola has 30- 60-mg caffeine and approx. 37-mg caffeine is there in 56g dark chocolate bar. There are a wide variety of drug products that contain caffeine- typically 200 mg per tablet or capsule (pharmacologically active dose of caffeine). A cup of tea has approx. 28 –44 mg caffeine- (FDA 1980).

The quantity of caffeine in tea, on dry solids basis, is more than the quantity of caffeine in an equal weight of dried coffee beans. However, as a result of getting more cups of tea from a unit quantity of black tea than from an equal quantity of ground coffee beans, the quantity of caffeine per cup of tea is less than the caffeine in an equal cup of coffee.

Excessive caffeine is said to have adverse effects on the human system and brewed tea has only half the caffeine levels in brewed coffee. However, it is important to note that research proves that the presence of caffeine in tea does not produce unhealthy results due to its combination with tea polyphenols.

6. How much caffeine is considered safe?

The Food Guide to healthy eating recommends caffeine consumption in moderation. According to the current findings for most people an intake of caffeine up to 400-450 mg per day does not increase the risk of heart disease, hypertension or have an adverse effect on pregnancy or the foetus. This level of caffeine is equivalent to approximately 10 to 12 cups (170 ml) of tea per day.

As explained by Prof. T. W. Wickremanayake (Ph D Glasgow, Visiting Research Fellow Glasgow, Wisconsin and California) the pharmacologically active dose of caffeine is 200 mg and the acute fatal dose is about 10,000 mg. Those who drink more than 5 cups of coffee or 9 cups of tea are regularly consuming 5% of the fatal dose. The T 1/2 of caffeine is about 3 hr. It is excreted quickly in urine as 1-methyl uric acid.

Prof. Wickramanayake also states the following. “There is a positive association between Myocardial infarction and heavy coffee consumption, whereas the correlation between infarction and heavy tea drinking is negative. In rats and rabbits maintained on atherogenic diets, caffeine increases serum lipid concentrations and therefore the incidence of atherosclerosis. Coffee has the same action but not decaffeinated coffee. Tea has the opposite effect to caffeine alone or caffeine in coffee. Similar results have been reported in a study of human subjects with and without heart ailments. Russian scientists have demonstrated that a course of tea consumption improved the condition of atherosclerotic patients. The alleged adverse effects of caffeine are apparently eliminated in tea either by a modification of its activity by other constituents, or by the opposing action of some anti-atherosclerotic constituent.”

7. Does green tea have the same Caffeine level as black tea?

Green tea, as well as Oolong tea & Black tea, are produced from the herb Camellia Sinensis. They all contain the same amount of caffeine. Caffeine content in a cup of tea is 2.5% to 4%, which is about a third of that in coffee. It is claimed that 80% of the caffeine in tea remains unabsorbed by the human body.

From the above you would realise that Green tea, Oolong tea & Black tea may taste different but the caffeine content is the same.

8. Can tea cause allergic reactions?

Food allergies to tea are extremely rare. Tea allergy usually takes the form of respiratory issues or skin problems for people who work in tea packing or processing, who become sensitized to it over an extended period.

People react differently to caffeine, with some people being so sensitive to its effects that they cannot tolerate even small amounts. The symptoms of caffeine sensitivity or intolerance are wide ranging but easy to recognize if you know what to expect.

Insomnia is the most common symptom of caffeine sensitivity. Trouble falling asleep, restless sleep, waking up during sleep and not feeling refreshed after sleep.
• Caffeine can cause nervousness.
• Caffeine intake is associated with jitteriness and unease.
• Caffeine can exacerbate stomach problems.

Some of the relatively common but often overlooked symptoms of caffeine sensitivity include stomach upset, diarrhea and stomach pain or discomfort.

The least common but most serious signs and symptoms of caffeine sensitivity are high blood pressure and heart side effects.

People with severe heart disease or a heart rhythm abnormality and caffeine sensitivity may be advised to avoid dietary caffeine.

9. Is tea Gluten free?

Gluten is a protein composite found in wheat and related grains, including barley and rye. It is not present in tea.

10. Is Tea Lactose free?

Lactose is a sugar derived from milk. It is not present in tea.

11. Why should one never re boil water when brewing tea?

Taste, colour and mouth feel depend on the interaction between the two main components of tea, polyphenols and caffeine. Each component is astringent on its own, but as a complex the astringent character is reduced.

Water is known to contain dissolved gases absorbed from the air. Carbon dioxide (CO2) gas that is present in water affects the acidity. Acidity of water plays a critical role in the ionization of tea polyphenols and it contributes to the stability of the above complex.

CO2 in water is gradually released during the boiling process. Re-boiling will in fact further reduce CO2 levels, resulting in a decrease in the acidity. As mentioned above this will affect the caffeine and polyphenol complexion, and bring about changes in the colour as well as the character of the brew.

Twice boiled water will therefore affect the taste of a good tea and hence our request that only freshly boiled water is used for brewing Dilmah tea.

12. Does drinking tea during pregnancy affect the foetus?

Questions surrounding caffeine intake and risk of miscarriage and health of the foetus continue to be raised by pregnant women.

A study published in the journal of American Medical Association found no evidence that moderate caffeine use increases the risk of spontaneous abortions, growth retention or account for other factors. Another seven-year epidemiological study on 1,500 women examined the effect of caffeine, during pregnancy as well as on subsequent child development. .

Caffeine consumption equivalent to approximately 3 ½ to 5 cups of tea per day had no effect on birth weight, birth length and head circumference of the baby. A follow-up examinations at age’s eight months, four and seven years also revealed no effect of caffeine consumption on the child’s motor development or intelligence. .

A number of factors influence the metabolism of caffeine and the individual’s response to caffeine indigestion. These include pregnancy, age, sex, body weight, diet, exercise, and stress smoking and alcohol consumption. .

Pregnancy hampers caffeine metabolism. For example, in non pregnant women the break-down of half of the caffeine takes an average of 2.5 – 4.5 hours, 7 hours during mid-pregnancy and 10.5 during the last few weeks of pregnancy. As caffeine retention is longer during pregnancy, women sensitive to caffeine may be affected. As a result a moderate consumption of approximately 3-4 cups a day, is recommended for women during pregnancy.

13. What is decaffeinated tea?

For teas to be labelled decaffeinated, the caffeine content should not exceed 0.4% by dry weight, which is equivalent to approximately 4 mg of caffeine per 170 ml serving.

The process of decaffeination extracts the caffeine in tea. The current commercially available methods for decaffeinating black tea are solvent based extraction using ethyl acetate or methylene chloride, and extraction using supercritical (solid) carbon dioxide. All three methods extract caffeine with minimum effect to the quality of tea.

14. Tannic acid – what is it and is it present in tea?

Tannins or tannic acid are not present in tea. Tea polyphenols were formerly referred to as tannins or tannic acids due to the similarities in the chemical structure. This has left many misguided notions about the effect of tea upon the human digestive system. Chemists generally group compounds into ‘families’ on account of common features in the synthesis of the molecules. For example both strychnine and morphine are alkaloids and have common structural features but the action on the human body is different. Strychnine is a powerful stimulant and morphine a powerful hypnotic.

Vegetable tannins are a large chemical family and some of them are loosely called tannic acids. These compounds possess the property of hardening animal tissues and turning hide into leather. Tea polyphenols on the other hand are called catechins, theaflavins and thearubigens, and are responsible for many of the health benefits associated with tea. Such as anti-hypercholestemic action, anti-hyperglycemic action, fat reduction action, anti-hypertensive action, anti- cancer action and many other health promoting effects. Current scientific literature points to the fact that tea polyphenols are biochemically very different to tannins.

15. Nutrients in tea what is in your cup of tea, and how it can affect your body?

 

Black Tea

Green Tea

100 ml of  brewed tea

1 cup of  brewed tea  (240 ml)

100 ml of  brewed tea

1 cup of  brewed tea  (240 ml)

Nutrients

Energy kcal / kJ

 

1 kcal / 4 kJ

2 kcal / 9 kJ

1 kcal / 4 kJ

2 kcal / 9 kJ

Protein (g)

0.2

0.5

0.2

0.5

Lipids (g)

0

0

0

0

Ash (g)

0.04

0.09

0.04

0.09

Carbohydrates Total (g)

0.3

0.7

0.3

0.7

Sugar  (g)

0

0

0

0

Dietary Fiber (g)

0

0

0

0

Minerals

Calcium (mg)

0

0

0

0

Iron (mg)

0.05

0.12

0.05

0.12

Magnesium (mg)

7

16.8

2

4.8

Phosphorous (mg)

2

4.8

0

0

Potassium (mg)

88

211.2

20

48

Sodium (mg)

7

16.8

2

4.8

Zinc (mg)

0.05

0.12

0.02

0.05

Copper (mg)

0.02

0.05

0.01

0.02

Manganese (mg)

0.5

1.2

0.45

1.1

Selenium (mg)

0

0

0

0

Other Constituents

Caffeine (mg)

20

48

12

30

Catechins (mg)

27

66

324

777

Theaflavins (mg)

4

11

0

0

Thearubigins (mg)

81

195

8

19

Source: USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference Release 28: Report

Date:January 25, 2016 06:22 EST

16. Explanation of terms

 

Element / Component

Description

1

Energy (k cal)

Calories (k cal) measure the energy content in foods. Calorie content in tea (without sugar and milk) is negligible.

2

Moisture

Moisture refers to the water content in food.

Processed tea leaves contain Moisture levels of 3 – 9 %. This can vary since tea is hygroscopic and can absorb Moisture after processing, during storage. Fresh Tea deteriorates with the absorption of Moisture and Dilmah Online recommends that Dilmah Tea is stored in an airtight container, in a refrigerator to retain freshness, flavour and aroma.

Please note that Tin Caddies and tea caddies made from materials that can corrode should not be used for refrigeration due to the high Moisture levels inside a fridge – tea should be in an airtight, non corrosive container that is free of odour. For example, a clean and odour free plastic, re-sealable container.

3

Protein

Proteins are Nitrogen containing compounds which are found in all animal and vegetable cells. An essential nutrient of all living organisms. Protein intake from tea is negligible as only less than 2% is extracted into hot water. However if milk is added it contributes significant amount of the Protein requirement.

4

Lipid

Substances, which are insoluble in water and these include the waxes, oils and fats. Fat gets readily deposited in cell tissue. Tea contains a negligible amount of lipids and the amount extracted to water is minimal, as it is insoluble in water. As a result tea without milk and sugar is recommended as part of a low calorie diet.

5

Ash (Minerals)

Inorganic constituents of plants and animals, e.g. Nitrogen, Potassium, Phosphorous, Calcium, Copper, Magnesium, Manganese, Molybdenum, Boron. They are essential for the healthy growth of the plant.

6

Carbohydrates Sugars Fibrous

On average about three-quarters of the dry matter in plants consists of carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are the main ingredient for animals in maintaining their body temperature. Carbohydrates consist of sugars and polysaccharides (fibrous matter). Main sugars are glucose, fructose and sucrose.
Examples of polysaccharides are starch and cellulose.

Only 4-5% of the solids extracted by hot water are carbohydrate, allowing tea to be used in low calorie diets.

7

Calcium
Phosphorous
Ferrous
Sodium
Potassium
Magnesium
Copper

Tea contains 4-9% of inorganic matter and the composition of this fraction varies. Most of these substances are essential to health and tea contributes to their dietary intake. Most of the minerals found in tea are essential plant nutrients and a healthy Tea bush would be expected to exhibit a range of these components. Variations experienced are usually attributed to differences in soil, age of the leaf at harvest and other agronomic factors.

Scientists have indicated that tea may be effective in treating anemia in due to its Copper and Ferrous components.

Sodium is an essential mineral for human nutrition however its intake has to be regulated in hypertension patients. In such cases the low proportion of sodiumin tea is advantageous.

The tea bush tends to accumulate Magnesium, Aluminum and Fluorine. Magnesium is an essential nutrient for man but Aluminum is not known to be essential to human health. But is always present in human tissue. Studies have shown that the body may not absorb Aluminum in tea.

 

Potassium is an essential element for the cell functions, including cardiovascular muscle function and nerve function. Compared to other elements the Potassium content of tea is high. As a result tea provides part of the daily Potassium requirement.

Calcium and Phosphorus are essential elements for the bone development, strong bones and teeth and tea provides part of the daily requirement of these elements.

17. What are the nutritional benefits of tea?

Tea composition varies with climate, season, horticultural practices and variety. Polyphenols are the most important component in tea, as they constitute approximately 36 percent of the dry weight of tea. Other components of fresh green leaf include caffeine, protein and amino acids, carbohydrates, lipids, vitamins and minerals.

Green and black tea have similar chemical make-up. The primary difference between the two types lies in the chemical changes that take place during their production. In black tea the plant Polyphenols are oxidized and this is prevented in the manufacture of green tea.

 One of the most important groups of Polyphenols in tea is the catechins in green tea, theaflavins and thearubigens in black tea. A variety of physiological effects have been attributed to tea catechins which are currently best known for their antioxidant activities.

 Black tea is all-natural (non flavoured) and contains no additives. It is virtually calorie-free (1 calorie per 100 ml) and sodium free and is therefore a suitable beverage for individuals on calorie-reduced or low sodium diet. Tea includes fluoride, traces of vitamins A, K, C, B carotene and B vitamins.

 Average daily consumption of tea in the United Kingdom, 3.43 cups (650 ml), provides very few calories and only a small amount of fat, whilst contributing valuable minerals and vitamins to the diet. It provides:

  • Over half of the total intake of dietary flavonoids.
  • Nearly 16% of the daily requirement of calcium
  • Almost 10% of the daily requirement of zinc
  • Over 10% of the folic acid need
  • Around 9%, 25% and 6% of vitamins B1, B2 and B6 respectively.

18. Does tea affect the absorption of Iron?

Tea flavonoids bind with iron, thereby decreasing its absorption. However, drinking tea between meals has no effect on iron absorption.

Although concerns have been expressed about consumption of iron, existing research and dietary knowledge indicate that tea is not likely to cause health risk, in individuals consuming a typically Western diet.

Dietary iron exists in two forms, heme iron (derived from animal) and non-heme iron (found in plants). The body better absorbs heme iron than non-heme iron. Between 15-35 % of heme iron is absorbed, while 2-20% is absorbed of non-heme iron. Non-heme iron is generally modified by other dietary components.

Certain components in grain, fruit and vegetables as well as polyphenols in tea reduce the availability of iron to the body. However, studies have shown that tea only decreases iron absorption when it is consumed simultaneously with food containing non-heme iron. Tea drinking between meals has no effect on iron absorption.

Moreover the ability of tea polyphenols to decrease iron absorption is reduced by the presence of other dietary constituents particular ascorbic acid (known to increase absorption of non-heme iron) and milk. Therefore, in order to overcome any potential for reduced iron absorption, simply add milk or lemon to tea. If a meal contains milk, tomatoes, orange juice or ascorbic acid of any kind, these will also balance iron absorption in a meal where tea is consumed.

19. What is a free radical?

Free radicals are unstable substances which can disrupt the biochemical processes in the body and have been implicated in cancer and heart disease.

20. Does tea contain antioxidants?

Tea, like fruit and vegetables is a natural source of polyphenols and flavonoids which have antioxidant activity.

21. Does the addition of milk reduce the antioxidant value?

The addition of milk does not appear to affect the bio availability of the tea flavonoids.

22. What are antioxidants?

Antioxidants are components which help to protect cells from harmful “free radicals”, known as oxidants. Free radicals occur naturally in the body as a by-product of the respiration process and can bring about cell damage. Antioxidants help to prevent this cell damage, which can contribute to ageing and a number of chronic diseases, including cancer and heart disease and strokes.

23. Are the antioxidants in green and black tea the same?

It was thought until comparatively recently that green tea was the most effective antioxidant-containing tea and that green-tea catechins (the unoxidized polyphenols present in tea leaf) alone were the antioxidants giving tea its health-giving attributes. It is now well known that the theaflavins and thearubugins produced by the condensation of oxidized catechins, during the fermentation stage of black tea manufacture, are equally effective antioxidants (Leung et al 2001).

The catechins present in tea flush and as such in green tea are:

  • Expressed as a % of dry weight
  • Epicatechin 1 – 3%
  • Epicatechin gallate 3 – 6%
  • Epigallocatechin 3 – 6%
  • Epigallocatechin gallate 9 -13%
  • Catechin 1 – 2%
  • Gallocatechin 3 – 4%


During manufacture of Black Tea these catechins get oxidized & polymerized (condensed), for example:

Epicatechin + Epigallocatechin gallate + Oxygen —> Theaflavin

The paired catechins as they appear in Black Tea are now known to be equally effective antioxidants. The body produces free radicals (FRs) under certain conditions. Carcinogens and radiation from the environment facilitates the formation of FRs. These FRs within the body cause oxidative changes to DNA (the genetic material present in all cells). Changes to DNA carry the risk of cancers. The FRs are inhibited and destroyed by the antioxidants in tea, both green and black tea.

Green and black tea comes from Camellia Sinensis. Green tea is unfermented, steamed immediately after plucking, and retains a lighter colour and flavour. Black tea is allowed to ferment and is then dried, resulting in a darker leaf colour and a more flavour and aroma.

24. What is the difference between green and black tea? Is green tea better for you than black tea?

Both green and black tea come from the same plant (Camellia sinensis). The leaves of this plant are grown the same way but treated differently after harvesting them. Black tea is oxidized (allowed to undergo chemical reactions caused by exposure to oxygen) and green tea is not. Oxidation results in color and flavor changes. That’s basically the only difference and thankfully it doesn’t alter the benefits in any way. Both varieties come from the same plant, Camellia sinensis, and both have similar amounts of antioxidants and minerals.

25. Why are there more publications on Green Tea than on Black tea?

In the worldwide literature regarding the impact of tea on health, the publications from the Asian countries predominate, where the most popular is green tea and the data on black tea is considerably less abundant but now gathering momentum.

26. Can green tea aid weight loss?

Long-term consumption of tea catechins could be beneficial against high-fat diet-induced obesity and type II diabetes and could reduce the risk of coronary disease. Further research that conforms to international standards need to be performed to monitor the pharmacological and clinical effects of green tea and to elucidate its mechanisms of action.

27. Can the consumption of tea be good for my memory as I grow older?

Research conducted at the University of Newcastle shows that drinking tea could help improve memory and also slow the development of Alzheimer’s disease.

The functioning of the brain cholinergic system, which is involved in attention and memory declines during normal aging and is further affected in Alzheimer’s disease. Current drugs for the symptomatic treatment of dementia are aimed at enhancing the associated cholinergic deficit by inhibiting acetylcholinesterase, an enzyme that cleaves the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Butyrylcholinesterase increases in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease and may play a role in the progression of the disease by its ability inter alia to hydrolyse the neurotransmitter Acetylcholine. Inhibition of both these enzymes is one of the objectives in treating cognitive dysfunction associated with diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease.

During the study it was found both green and black tea inhibited the activity of the enzyme acetylcholinesterase, and also hinder the activity of the enzyme butyrylcholinesterase. It was further observed that Green tea obstructed the activity of beta-secretase, which plays a role in production of protein deposits in the brain that are associated with Alzheimer’s disease. So this study reports that tea infusions in vitro have dual anti-cholinesterase and anti-β-secretase activities relevant to the treatment of dementia.

Previous studies have shown that both green tea and black tea possess pharmacologically protective, properties such as antioxidative, anticarcinogenic, neuroprotective and hyppocholesterolaemic effects. This study indicates that Tea, Camellia sinensis has the potential to enhance cholinergic function and therefore may have a role in ameliorating and cholinergic deficit in Alzheimer’s disease and other age related memory impairments. The effects of tea infusions on the cerebral cholinergic system and β-secretase in vivo will depend on the levels of the enzymes in the brain, the type and chemistry of the tea, infusion concentration (strength), dose (number of cups per day) and duration of consumption. It is also possible that regular consumption of tea by patients with dementia prescribed cholinesterase inhibitors may alter the effects of such drugs. Clinical and scientific investigation of the chemistry and activities of cholinomimetic and anti- β-secretase compounds in C. sinensis, and cognitive effects of tea consumption is warranted in order to establish the relevance of these novel findings to the maintenance of cognitive function in old age and in diseases such as Alzheimer’s Disease.

28. Tea and Oral Health: Does Fluoride in Tea has any implications on Oral Health?

Tea plants accumulate fluoride in their leaves. In general, the oldest tea leaves contain the most fluoride. Most high quality teas are made from the bud or the first two to four leaves—the youngest leaves on the plant. Brick tea, a lower quality tea, is made from the oldest tea leaves and is often very high in fluoride. Symptoms of excess fluoride (i.e., dental and skeletal fluorosis) have been observed in Tibetan children and adults who consume large amounts of brick tea. Unlike brick tea, fluoride levels in green, oolong, and black teas are generally comparable to those recommended for the prevention of dental caries (cavities). Thus, daily consumption of up to one liter of green, oolong, or black tea would be unlikely to result in fluoride intakes higher than those recommended for dental health. The fluoride content of white tea is likely to be less than other teas, since white teas are made from only the buds of the tea plant.

It has been found that not only fluoride but the polyphenols in tea also act to reduce tooth decay. Recent studies have further revealed that tea inhibits the growth of other harmful microorganisms in the oral cavity.

29. Tea and Stroke

Many in vitro studies have demonstrated the anti-oxidant properties of both black and green tea, as well as the antioxidant activity of the polyphenols in tea. Further studies have shown that these anti-oxidant components of tea are absorbed into the blood circulation from the digestive tract and act as anti-oxidants in body systems. These findings indicate that tea drinking helps to reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke and cancer, common degenerative diseases.

30. Tea for Healthy Aging and Longevity

Researcher Dr Weisburger concludes from recent studies that six or more cups of tea per day helps healthy aging. Tea can restore elasticity to the skin, and tests have shown that it enhances memory.

In populations where regular tea drinking is a part of the lifestyle, as in Japan and India, individuals are likely to live to an advanced age in good health. Also, experimental studies indicate that animals given dietary antioxidants, including tea, live longer.