Hot Weather Relief: Brewed Iced Tea
Iced tea is more than a cool remedy for a hot day. Here are four reasons to brew iced tea, rather than bottled:
- It’s cheaper.
- You’ll likely add less sugar, thus healthier.
- Studies show fresh-brewed tea contains more polyphenols than the healthier bottled teas. And you want polyphenols. These antioxidants protect the body’s tissues against free radical-unstable molecules than can increase the risk of illnesses such as coronary heart disease and cancer.
- You can choose the exact tea you want.
Janette Marsac, a registered dietitian, comments on the most common varieties.
Black tea contains the most caffeine of any steeped tea – 47mg in one cup, about half the amount of coffee. It’s also a rich source of theaflavins, which may help lower blood cholesterol.
Oolong is a traditional Chinese tea with a flavor that ranges from light and fruity to bold and earthy. It has 38 mg of caffeine per cup, and its antioxidants are similar to black and green tea.
Green tea contains 29mg caffeine per cup and it retains more disease-fighting compounds than black tea does due to its air-drying process, which results in less oxidation. Green tea may also boost metabolism and improve insulin sensitivity.
Matcha tea has the highest amount of caffeine in teas being 70mg for one cup (made with one teaspoon). It is made from whole green-tea leaves ground into a fine powder, then mixed with hot water. It has three times more antioxidants than green tea and more caffeine.
Masala chai is black tea infused with spices, from cardamon to nutmeg to cinnamon. These spices enhance the tea’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
White tea has a high level of antioxidants and has a lighter taste and less caffeine than black or green tea. It also has oral health benefits, including plaque prevention and it won’t stain your teeth.
Chamomile tea is a caffeine-free herbal tea with a slightly earthy, sweet taste. It contains apigenin, an antioxidant that may induce sleepiness and reduce insomnia, especially in older adults.
Hibiscus tea is a caffeine-free tea that contains high levels of antioxidants. It has a fruity and slightly sour taste yet sip with caution: Too much hibiscus can have a laxative effect.
Pictured are some of the teas available at Fresh & Natural.
Kelsey Olgetree, AARP June/July 2022
Author: Michelle Hanson
Michelle Hanson, MA, RD, LD is Fresh & Natural Food’s Registered Dietitian. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics with a minor in Community Health from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities. She is a registered dietitian and current member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Michelle has been a nutrition consultant for numerous years as well as a nutrition research director at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities.
Michelle is passionate about food and nutrition and believes in helping people find simple, realistic ways to make healthy eating a part of their everyday lifestyle.
If you are interested in meeting Michelle or have questions for her, you can email her at: email@example.com. She will look forward to meeting you!