Tea is widely used in the world. It’s the second most consumed beverage in the world, right behind water. In Japan, tea was introduced around 800 AD. Buddhist Priest Yeisei brought the beverage to the country, and had seen the benefits of a tea on religious ceremonies and activities including meditation. Thanks to his influence, tea spread rapidly through monasteries and royalty. Learn more about the history of tea. Soon, drinking tea was elevated to an art form which is still used today. To perform the tea ceremony in Japan, an individual must have years of training to achieve the right level of grace, charm and manners. In China, around the 16th century, tea started as a medical drink for patients to control bleeding, heal wounds, aid digestion, improve heart/mental health and regulate body temperature. It’s also known that the use of green tea for lowering bad cholesterol (LDL) is very significant.
Tea made its way to England in the 1650s. It wasn’t long after that the Duchess of Bedford, introduced the country to a third meal. Prior to tea time, only breakfast and dinner had been served. The Duchess invited friends over in the afternoons for tea time and a walk. The concept caught on quickly and soon many of the women had adopted tea time. Tea was served in a sterling tea service and poured in to fine porcelain from China. As tea became less expensive, tea time was adopted by all levels of society. Nobles enjoyed “low tea” which was tea served with delicacies while peasants and others enjoyed “high tea” which included a full meal along with tea. Tea gardens soon followed which were the first public area where mixing social classes was considered acceptable.
People who drink tea reap astounding benefits from it, these include but are not limited to:
Cancer – According to the National Cancer Institute, the polyphenols in tea have been shown to decrease tumor growth in laboratory and animal studies and may protect against damage caused by ultraviolet UVB radiation.
In countries where green tea consumption is high cancer rates tend to be lower, but it is impossible to know for sure whether it is the green tea that prevents cancer in these specific populations or other lifestyle factors.
Heart Disease – A 2006 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association concluded that green tea consumption is associated with reduced mortality due to all causes, including cardiovascular disease. The study followed over 40,000 Japanese participants between the ages of 40 and 79 for 11 years, starting in 1994.The participants who drank at least 5 cups of green tea per day had a significantly lower risk of dying (especially from cardiovascular disease) than those who drank less than one cup of tea per day.
Type 2 Diabetes – Studies concerning the relationship between green tea and diabetes have been inconsistent. Some have shown a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes for green tea drinkers than for those who consumed no tea.