Iced Tea: Good or Bad?

Posted by on February 16, 2012 in Health Articles | 0 comments

Brewed from the same leaves as hot teas, iced tea has the same health benefits as its warmer counterpart. Numerous studies have shown that the high levels of flavonoids and other substances in tea give it many antioxidant properties. Adding lemon juice, which contains high amounts of beneficial vitamin C and potassium, to your iced tea not only lends flavor, but can increase the health benefits as well.

Cardiovascular Benefits

According to the Harvard Health Publications website, green, black and oolong tea, all of which are used to make various iced teas, contain antioxidants that block the oxidation of LDL while increasing levels of HDL, which improves function of the arteries. According to the Linus Pauling Institute, several studies have found that drinking 24 oz. of tea a day decreases the risk of heart attack by 11 percent.

Help With Osteoporosis

According to the Linus Pauling Institute, the presence of fluoride, caffeine and flavonoids in tea may help increase bone mineral density, leading to a decrease in the risk of osteoporosis. One study found a direct association between tea consumption and hip fracture, which is one of the consequences of osteoporosis.

Decreased Cancer Risk

According to the National Cancer Institute, the presence of catechins in tea may help in treating and preventing cancer. Studies performed on animals have shown that catechins can slow the growth of cancer cells as well as fight free radicals before they cause damage. These studies have also shown that catechins can reduce the size of tumors.

It is important to note, however, that studies in humans have had differing results. Some human studies have suggested the possibility that catechins can help in fighting cancer, while other human studies have produced no recognizable results.

Dental Benefits

According to the Linus Pauling Institute, fluoride levels in tea are similar to levels recommended to prevent cavities. One study found that children who drank tea had significantly fewer cavities than those who did not. Lemon juice also plays a part in the treatment of dental problems. According to the LifeMojo Website, lemon juice can prevent pain and bleeding of the gums and even helps with bad breath.

Weight-Loss Aid

Studies have shown that certain teas, especially green and oolong, may assist in weight loss, according to the Linus Pauling Institute. Tea has been shown to increase the body’s energy expenditure, which plays an important part in weight reduction. Tea has also been shown to help prevent the regaining of weight after significant weight has been lost. The addition of lemon juice to tea increases the potential for weight loss.

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