Know EXACTLY What's in Your Cup.

When it comes to having a cup of tea, the possibilities are endless. A basic understanding of the types of teas available is helpful when deciding.

First of all, toss the tea bags and try a loose leaf tea instead. The flavor and health benefits far exceed anything that can be found in a bag.

Whether you are sipping black, oolong, green, or white tea, it’s important to know that all true teas derive from the same plant or a sub species of plant, camellia sinensis. What makes tea types different are how the leaves are processed. Black tea leaves are fully oxidized and as a result have a dark color and robust flavor when brewed. Oolong teas are semi-oxidized and the leaves are often larger. Their leaves are typically rolled or twisted allowing them to be steeped multiple times. Green tea is unoxidized and the leaves are usually steamed or pan-fired depending on their origin. White teas are the least processed of all teas and have a very light, delicate flavor. Historically white teas only came from China, however, delicious and unique white teas are being produced in many countries around the world. There are literally thousands of different tea blends within these basic tea types, each with its own flavor and aroma.

Drinking Teas and Herbals for their medicinal properties dates back to 1578AD so the history of drinking Tea for its health benefits is a long one. Since all tea types possess botanical similarities, their health benefits are also similar. Different processing techniques can lead to variations in these health attributes.

For instance, the typical go to tea for weight loss is green tea. Non-oxidized green tea is high in catechins and natural antioxidants. Antioxidants are nutrients that protect your cells from damage and help overall body function. You’ve heard antioxidant-rich foods, like spinach and nuts, touted for years. But the health benefits from green tea are just as strong.

White teas are considered to have anti-cancer benefits. Their delicate leaves are picked when the plants are very young. White tea leaves are simply withered and dried, as opposed to fully oxidized black tea leaves. Since the buds and leaves go through very little processing, white teas contain high levels of polyphenols, which are naturally occurring nutrients that include catechins, tannins, theaflavins and flavonoids. Once brewed, white teas are light in color with subtle flavors.

Green tea is also a proven cancer preventative. Since Green tea is high in polyphenols and is an anti-inflammatory, this tea can help prevent and slow the growth of cancer cells. If you are looking for yet another reason to add green tea to your daily regimen, according to a team of researchers at Penn State University’s College of Agricultural Sciences, green tea can also help to boost your metabolism

Oolong Teas help regulate blood sugar levels making you feel more satisfied and balanced, which means they curb your cravings for sweets. Oolong teas are thought to be Thermogenic and can increase metabolism by 10-20%.

Black Teas have the ability to blunt increases in blood sugar. A recent study shows that people who drink three cups of black tea a day reap the benefit of lowering their blood pressure as well.

Often mistakenly called tea, herbal tisanes are infusions that do not come from the tea plant. A few examples of herbal tisanes are chamomile, peppermint and rooibos. Many of these herbals have their own health attributes.

As with any tea or herbal, be sure to follow the brewing instructions carefully. The three biggest things to remember when making that cup of tea are: water quality, water temperature and time steeped. Tea types differ in the way they should be prepared. Beleave Teas’ tins and pouches come with specific brewing instructions for each tea type. For best results, use filtered water heated using a tea kettle versus the microwave.

With so many variations among tea blends and tisanes, indecision is common. You may want to consider what benefits you are trying to achieve to help decide which is the best tea for your health. If you are not sure whether to commit to a full tin, start with our Sampler Set. That way you can sample from our dozens of delicious selections. We classify our Teas and Herbals by Type and by Wellness Attribute.