As Summer Ends...China Mist asks Hot Or Not? Taking sides on Tea

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As those hot summer nights start to turn into chilly autumn evenings, the debate begins whether to stick with iced tea, or move to hot.

As summer faces and autumn sets in the debate for tea starts, especially the debate around temperature of tea. Is one better than the other for a certain season? Or is it simply a matter of personal taste?

Which is healthier, hot tea or cold tea?

Tea is rich in antioxidants that can help protect against cancer, heart disease, and other health concerns. Some people avoid iced tea due to the belief that it goes through additional processing that destroys the antioxidants.

An experiment by Prevention Magazine, which measured antioxidant levels, found that “convenience” cold teas (bottled cold tea, iced tea bags, etc.) did have less antioxidants than hot teas, but that even some convenience teas had more antioxidants than fruit sources like blueberries and Concord grape juice.

On the other hand, a 2013 study by the European Journal of Nutrition, which analyzed the connection between hot vs. cold tea and weight factors, found that regular hot tea consumption was associated with lower body weight measures than that of cold tea drinkers. In other words, drinking cold tea makes you fat.

So is hot tea really healthier than cold tea?

The answer is in the tea, not the temperature.

What impacts the quality of the tea is how it’s made and the ingredients that are added to it, not the temperature. We suspect that the hot-tea drinkers in the EJN study were simply drinking healthier teas, whereas cold tea drinkers are more likely to be lured in by unhealthy convenience teas.

Here’s what you should know:

  •     Choose fresh-brewed over processed tea. By making the tea, you know exactly what’s being put into it and what’s not.
  •     Do research. Not all convenience teas are created equal, so look for brands that use high-quality ingredients, preferably from sustainable sources.
  •     Keep a lid on the sugar. The health benefits of tea is often offset by large amounts of sweetener. If weight control is an important factor, drink unsweetened or lightly sweetened tea. Again, making it yourself is advisable because it gives you control over sugar content.
  •     Choose teas with natural flavors. Convenience teas may use artificial concoctions to flavor their tea. Read the labels so you know what's included in the tea.
  •     Familiarize with tea brands found in restaurants. Hint: If it’s served out of the same machine as soda, it’s probably loaded up with sugar. If you’re a regular cold tea drinker, Google the brands served at favorite establishments to see if they offer gourmet brands like China Mist that give home-brewed quality.

Bottom line: You’ll get the best antioxidant boost from fresh-brewed tea that is chilled, but even some convenience teas retain a respectable amount of antioxidants. The most important thing is to do your homework on the brands you consume to make sure you’re getting all the health benefits of this wonderful beverage.

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Bonnie Brown
China Mist Tea Company
+1 (480) 612-0360 Ext: 110
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China Mist Brands, Inc.
since: 02/2009
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