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Tea can energize, detox body without caffeine

Tea may substitute for even most hardcore coffee addictions

Dr.+Linda+Kingbury+said+black%2C+white+and+green+tea+contain+caffeine+but+are+still+healthier+than+coffee.++
Dr. Linda Kingbury said black, white and green tea contain caffeine but are still healthier than coffee.

Dr. Linda Kingbury said black, white and green tea contain caffeine but are still healthier than coffee.

COURTESY OF UNSPLASH

COURTESY OF UNSPLASH

Dr. Linda Kingbury said black, white and green tea contain caffeine but are still healthier than coffee.

KATIE GROVES, Evergreen columnist

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After writing about the potential health benefits of coffee, I decided to look into the potential benefits — or disadvantages — of tea. Unlike coffee, tea doesn’t seem to have as many negative perceptions attached to it; we tend to think of the possible health benefits.

Linda Kingsbury, owner of Moscow’s Spirit Herbs, said humans have used herbal tea since time immemorial. Most do not contain caffeine, which may account for why tea is thought of as healthier in general.

Tea is essentially plant material infused in water, and different plants can serve different purposes because they will react with our bodies in a specific way.

“For energy, black, white and green tea — which do contain caffeine — are good to drink,” Kingsbury said. “Herbal teas without caffeine [that are] good for energy are ginseng, oregano, lemongrass and rosemary. These teas [are] also great if you need to stay up at night or wake up in the morning.”

Even though tea has many health benefits, it was never a big thing for me growing up. I recently became more interested in herbal teas such as peppermint, chamomile and lavender. I was relieved when Kingsbury said teas like these are good for nighttime or relaxing.

For someone trying to become a more avid tea-drinker, it’s about choosing something that will taste good. Also keep in mind that teas have different uses. So if you want to detox or if your stomach hurts, you should look up the teas that aid with those health ailments.

College students, including myself, are always on the run, so it seems like the easier choice is to gravitate toward drinking pre-bottled teas.

Kingsbury warned that these teas often contain a lot of sugar. If sugar is listed in the top three ingredients, it’s not as healthy as you might think. She said being aware of what you’re putting in your body is important because the excess sugar can be hazardous to health.

Chai tea mix is a good example of tea with a high sugar content, even though it may have “natural flavorings,” so Kingsbury said it may be a good idea to ask if the chai is from an actual teabag.

Kingsbury recommended looking for an unsweetened label on bottled tea to make sure your body doesn’t crash from the sugars or other additives. Using extracts or tinctures, liquid concentrations of tea taken orally to enter the bloodstream quickly are also beneficial.

She said tea nourishes the system more than energy drinks, which could be overwhelming for the adrenal and nervous systems. But drinking strong, highly caffeinated teas like Yerba Mate may not be the healthiest.

Kingsbury recommended checking with a natural healthcare practitioner before drinking yerba mate, especially if you’re taking medication or pregnant. Despite some outlier risks in drinking certain teas, the positives outweigh the negatives.

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Tea can energize, detox body without caffeine