Want to know which tea should you be drinking when? Nutritionist and GoodnessMe Box Health Editor Melisaa Fine gives her tips on the best time of day to be drinking different teas.
In the Morning: English Breakfast
With about half the caffeine content of a cup of coffee, a mug of rich, full-bodied English Breakfast can put some pep in your step first thing in the a.m. A good choice if you find coffee too strong on your stomach, but like a little caffeine to get you going.
Made with the aged leaves of the Camellia sinesis plant, think of English Breakfast tea (along with other varieties of black tea) as a healthy morning tonic packed with polyphenols; These are antioxidant-rich plant compounds which can help fight cell-damaging free radicals like pesticides and pollution.
Fun food fact: Polyphenols are what can contribute to a food’s astringency, which explains why your English Brekkie can get bitter if you brew it for too long…so the bite isn’t necessarily a bad thing!
In the Arvo: Green Tea
Next time you feel your attention waning come 3.30, make yourself a mug of green tea. The perfect pick-me-up for the afternoon slump, green tea can help you feel more focused. This is thanks to its rich L-theanine content, which also has a calming effect – handy if you’re on a work or assignment deadline.
Green tea is made with the fresh leaves of Camellia sinesis plant, and so like black tea, it is is loaded with antioxidant-rich polyphenols, and in particular, health-promoting ‘catechins’…drink up!
And because it contains caffeine in a gentler dose than coffee, green tea is a natural way to bump up your energy levels mid-arvo, sans the coffee jitters. It also comes without the sugar or artificial sweeteners that you get in highly processed cola or energy drinks.
We’ve swapped our afternoon coffees with Oxfam’s fair Green Tea at GoodnessMe Box HQ – all natural and with no additives (some varieties contain flavours from an unnamed source), the leaves are processed and packed using organic practices.
In the Evening: Herbal Tea
If you’re sensitive to caffeine but like a cup of tea before bed, it’s worth swapping your black or green tea for a caffeine free herbal tea so you’re not up all night.
And although it’s not everyone’s cup of tea (pardon the pun), today there are so many varieties of herbal tea that I bet you’ll actually find one you like, each with their own health benefits:
- For a Sweet Tooth: Go for a herbal chai with spices like sweet and cinnamon and smooth vanilla, which can help kick a sweet craving. Licorice tea also tastes super sweet (you’ll feel like you’re drinking a cup of licorice) but surprisingly is sugar free.
- To Aid Digestion: Try refreshing peppermint tea, which can help sooth a sore stomach thanks to its antispasmodic properties. Ginger tea is also nice and warming for the gut.
- To Relax: An oldie but a goodie, calming chamomile remains the perfect nightcap. Not a fan of chamomile’s floral flavour? Try it in a blend with vanilla for a smoother, sweeter tasting tea.
Oxfam fair Organic Green and Black Teas: Oxfam fair range of tea is as fresh as it can be! The tea leaves are hand-picked by small farmers located in the famous James Valley (Green tea) and UVA region (Black tea) in Sri Lanka. The leaves are then processed and packed at the organic tea factory Avonlea Hill in Diyatalawa, in Sri Lanka, using a traditional method to ensure freshness and maximise the level of antioxidants.For more visit www.oxfam.org.au