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  Weekly Feature (January 11, 2009)


Hot Tea Month
Cheryl's Weekly Feature


Since I have been addicted to coffee for many years, I only discovered last year that January is hot tea month. I love coffee and never miss drinking my morning coffee. However, I also enjoy tea, especially Earl Grey and chai.

There is no question about the popularity of tea as it is the most consumed liquid in the world after water. There are many varieties such as:  herbal, green, black, white, red, oolong…, but which ones offer the most benefit and nutrition?

Teas such as black, white, green and oolong come from a plant called Camellia sinensis. The leaves, used for tea, contain polyphenols which are a anti-cancer antioxidants. The way you can tell if a tea is processed is that it will become very dark.

The white and green teas are the least processed. The white tea comes from the very young spring leaves that are steamed very quickly. Many people don’t realize that these teas rank as high (sometimes higher) than fresh fruits and vegetables in antioxidant potential.

Many teas that we refer to as herbal teas are not even teas, but plant infusions made from herbs, flowers, roots and spices. The “herbal teas” do not generally contain caffeine. However, the other teas do. Yet, it is less caffeine per cup than coffee. About 40 mg of caffeine is contained in the average cup of tea as opposed to coffee which has 85 mg. If you must have sweetener in your tea, try raw honey which will give you many health benefits as opposed to white sugar or even processed honey.

Enjoy 2009 and try some new teas.

Some of my favourite teas are made by the Stash Tea Company , and one of my students introduced me to Revolution Teas.

The Chinese have a special love of tea and some tea history can be found at Tea's Wonderful History.

In addition, the Japanese are famous for their tea ceremony which you can learn about at this site. The Japanese Tea Ceremony


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