5 Teas That Are Beneficial to Your Health

Often used in ancient herbal remedies, the tea plant — Camellia sinensis — is a proven tool in promoting health and well-being. Study after study supports the claim that various teas support physical and mental health.

Unfortunately, the variety of available teas makes it difficult for the average consumer to choose the most beneficial tea options. From green tea to black tea and everything in between, not all teas are equal. Despite the growing supply and variety of available teas, most registered dietitians agree that five teas stand out over the rest.

1. Green Tea

Medical professionals and dietitians agree that green tea is the most beneficial option. Green tea contains loads of antioxidants that help:

  • Improve brain function
  • Lower risk of heart disease
  • Protect against cancer
  • Aid in fat loss

One antioxidant, in particular, catechin, helps protect your body against free radicals and other harmful molecules. The substance prevents cell damage, protecting against premature aging and disease.

2. Peppermint Tea

Experts recommend drinking peppermint tea when you are not feeling 100%. The tea contains menthol, which can help when fighting a cold. Menthol essentially helps to rile up your immune system.

Peppermint tea has antiviral and antibacterial properties. Dietitians and medical professionals claim the tea can help reduce fever, relieve nasal congestion, and relax sore throats. If peppermint tea is not your drink of choice when feeling under the weather, you can also try:

  • Echinacea tea
  • Elderberry tea
  • Hibiscus tea

3. Ginger Tea

Ginger tea has proven digestive benefits. Several studies show ginger combats nausea, including morning sickness. Also, the herb helps the stomach move food to the digestive tract, easing indigestion and gastric distress.

Despite the benefits of ginger tea, many people cannot handle the strong taste. If you do not like ginger tea, consider peppermint tea. Several studies suggest peppermint can help with indigestion, but be careful because it can aggravate acid reflux symptoms.

4. Herbal Tea

Herbal teas represent a mixture of dried flowers, herbs, fruits and spices. They are not derived from the tea plant like other teas. Drinking herbal tea can improve lung health.

According to some reports, herbal teas possess anti-inflammatory properties that help relax airways, allowing for easier breathing. Herbal teas are often recommended to people with asthma and similar conditions because of their effect on the lungs. Experts recommend selecting a tea with cinnamon, turmeric, or ginger for optimum lung benefit.

5. Chamomile Tea

Chamomile tea is an excellent option for easing a troubled mind and drifting to sleep. The chamomile plant contains the antioxidant apigenin, which attaches to brain receptors to alleviate anxiety symptoms and increase relaxation. According to some experts, chamomile acts as a mild tranquilizer.

If you don't like chamomile tea or want to try something different, choose valerian root tea. Valerian root works similarly to chamomile and promotes relaxation.

Tea is a proven health aid. While producers continue to create clever mixes, five straightforward teas are all you need to experience the many health benefits of the beverage.

The Best Benefits of Vitamin A

Vitamin A may not sound as exciting as kimchi or bee pollen, but it gets the job done. It’s an amazing vitamin that takes care of countless systems in the body, including your immune system, eyes, muscles and bones. Why is it important for your health?

1. Preventing Night Blindness

Do you remember how your mom always told you that eating carrots would help you see better at night? She was right, in a way. Carrots have a lot of beta-carotene, which the body turns in vitamin A. This vitamin helps make your eyes sensitive to tiny amounts of light in darkness.

When someone has night blindness, there’s a good chance they have a deficiency of vitamin A. Night blindness is when you can see fine during the day but have a hard time seeing in the dark. This condition can be dangerous if you try to drive at night.

2. Slowing Down Age-Related Eyesight Problems

Of all the senses that I want to protect, I think my eyes are most important to me. The thought of losing my vision or having eyesight problems really scares me. It turns out that making sure you get enough beta-carotene can help keep your eyes safe.

Vitamin A is a powerful antioxidant. It protect your cells against free radicals, dangerous molecules that come from toxins. Scientists believe that free radicals play a part in age-related macular degeneration (AMD), or retina damage. Beta-carotene may lower your risk of this serious eye problem by a whopping 25%!

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3. Keeping Your Skin and Hair Hydrated

Who doesn’t want smooth, supple skin and lustrous, vibrant hair? I sure do. You can imagine how happy I was to find out that vitamin A helps with that, too!

This super vitamin helps maintain healthy levels of natural moisturizing oils for your skin and hair. It can even help you avoid acne breakouts.

4. Strengthening Your Immune System

Vitamin A is like the top general of your body’s germ-fighting army. It’s responsible for both offense and defense, supporting the systems that trap viruses and bacteria before they get you sick. Vitamin A also helps increase the number of white blood cells in your body, which hunt and destroy microbes during an infection.

What does this mean for you? Having plenty of vitamin A can increase your defenses against invaders, reduce the severity of infections, help you recover faster and even heal injuries more quickly.

Who Needs Vitamin A Supplements?

There are two forms of vitamin A: one that’s ready for your body to use and another that needs to be “activated." The first type is what you get in vitamin supplements. The second includes beta-carotene, which gets turned into active vitamin A as the body requires.

Only take a supplement for vitamin A if you have a deficiency. Your doctor can help you find out if that’s the case.

Including more beta-carotene in your diet, on the other hand, is perfectly safe. Look for orange, yellow and green leafy vegetables:

  • Carrots
  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • Tomatoes
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Butternut squash
  • Bell peppers

Vitamin A is essential for good health. It’s like olive oil — you use it in so many recipes that the kitchen just isn’t complete without it.