Take frequent tea breaks this winter and you may get through it without a sniffle!

Tea and Immune System

Immunologists at Harvard University discovered that people who drank five cups of black tea a day for two weeks transformed their immune system T cells into “Hulk cells”.

These cells pump out ten times more cold and flu virus-fighting interferon than did the immune systems of those who did not drink black tea. Green tea should work just as well.

Germs that your body fights with interferon cause not just the common cold and flu, but food poisoning, infected cuts, athlete’s foot — even diseases such as tuberculosis and malaria. It is thought that the interferon boosts from tea may help prevent or lessen the severity of all these conditions.

While the suggested five cups a day may seem like a lot, fewer cups may still offer some valuable protection. As will supplements, such as green extract, in the form of a table, or you can use a liquid green tea extract.

The interferon link may explain tea’s other health benefits, including its reported cancer-fighting power, since we already know that interferon slows the growth of tumor cells.

Tea and Controlling Free Radicals

In one study, researchers at the University of Scranton found that of 39 antioxidants found in food, polyphenols from tea showed the greatest prowess at controlling free radicals. Free radicals have been linked to cancer, heart disease, and a number of less serious problems. Polyphenols make up nearly 30 percent of tea’s dry weight. Both green and black tea have polyphenols.

Take Time for Tea

Theanine, a unique amino acid found almost exclusively in tea, may help improve people’s ability to focus and perform on tests. Research shows that 50 milligrams of theanine – the amount in three to five cups of tea – produces an alert, yet relaxed state of mind, according to John Foxe, Ph.D., a neuroscientist at City College in New York.

When Foxe and his team examined a combo of caffeine (known for improving mental performance) plus theanine, the mental boost was more significant than with either one given alone. Participants were better able to stay alert. It appears tea’s unique effects on concentration may be due to the natural combination of theanine and caffeine.

Recommended Green Teas

Organic Green Tea Sencha is a light brownish yellow liquor appearance, smooth with reasonable depth and body. This is a premium green tea that is USDA certified organic. Deep flavor and juicy mouthfeel. Each cup of green tea gets stronger so you can use the same leaves for many cups.

Yamamotoyama Genmai-cha Green Tea – A light brownish yellow liquor appearance with toasty flavor, tending sweet.

Jasmine Green Tea Bags – A luxury green tea with surprising body and a captivating floral taste that is not found in any other natural tea.

Oolong Tea

Oolong Tea for Eczema:  If you are one who is still scratching from childhood eczema, help may be a cup of tea or three away.

Researchers found that drinking three cups a day of Oolong Tea (one after each meal) relieved eczema’s itchy, red, swollen rashes in 54-percent of 118 adults for whom standard treatments had failed.

Also known as atopic dermatitis, eczema strikes as many as 20-percent of infants, then stubbornly torments about 60-percent of them into adulthood. Sufferers have unusually sensitive skin, with rashes sometimes triggered by nothing more than scratchy clothing.

Researchers suspect that antioxidants called polyphenols in oolong tea (which is less processed than black tea) stopped the rash reaction. Polyphenol is the ingredient that generates the delicious flavor unique to oolong tea and also promotes beauty and health.

Oolong Also Aids in Controlling Obesity

Polyphenol in oolong tea is effective in controlling obesity. Specifically speaking, it activates the enzyme that is responsible for dissolving triglycerides. Several clinical test results confirm that the continuous intake of oolong tea contributes to enhancing the function of fat metabolism and to controlling obesity.


Kombucha is very ancient and comes from north central Asia. It is a strain of one bacterium and three or four different yeasts. When grown properly, the culture produces glucuronic acid, latic acid, many vitamins, amino acids and other antibiotic substances. These help strengthen the immune system. It is valued for its ability to stimulate intestinal action and provide nutrients for balanced intestinal flora. It is also said to enhance and circulate the energy in the body. It is detoxifying to the entire body, improving elimination and metabolic harmony.

Proponents claim kombucha tea can stimulate the immune system, prevent cancer, and improve digestion and liver function. However, no scientific evidence supports these claims. Plus, there have been reports of adverse effects, such as stomach upset, infections and allergic reactions in kombucha tea drinkers.

“In short, there isn’t good evidence that kombucha tea delivers on its health claims. At the same time, several cases of harm have been reported. Therefore, the prudent approach is to avoid kombucha tea until more definitive information is available.” – The Mayo Clinic

Remodeling? Have Some Tea!

Remodeling efforts, including any painting or gluing, generally result in an unhealthy buildup of chemicals in the home. Dry tea bags will absorb chemicals in the air and reduce the amount of time it takes for a home to regain healthy air quality.

Researchers at the Tokyo Metropolitan Consumer Center found that scattering tea bags throughout a newly remodeled room reduced the toxicity level of chemicals in the air by up to 90 percent.

Did You Know?

  • January is Hot Tea Month