We all love tea! Tea is excellent sipped with some shade. While throwing shade may make you feel better, tea might also actually help feel you better! The benefits of drinking tea far exceed more processed beverages, such as sodas or juices. Research suggests tea may relieve symptoms associated with gastrointestinal illness and mental health .
Health Benefits of Tea
So, what teas are out there for the tasting? Of those delicious brews, which is best for gastrointestinal distress and mental well-being?
First, it is important to note that the benefits of tea start to decline when you add in sugars of any kind, regardless of the source. While you can opt for a non-calorie sweetener, but go with just hot water and lemon to experience the maximum benefits of tea.
Black Tea for Diabetes
Black tea is the most common form of tea. It has a much stronger flavor, which is why so many prefer it as a competitor of coffee. There’s more to black tea than just it’s bold flavor.
For instance, studies have shown that people who drink a cup or two of black tea a day have an up to 70% decreased risk for Type 2 Diabetes.
A meta-analysis from 9 studies also showed that people who consume 3 or more cups of green or black tea a day had a 21% lower risk of having a stroke .
Some studies have also shown that consuming higher amounts of black tea can reduce signs of depression . This could also be due to the caffeine content present in the tea.
Caffeine is a stimulant that:
-University of Colorado Neuroanatomy
“Increase dopamine concentrations in the brain reward pathway.”
This sensation also explains the agitation one feels when the effects of caffeine begin to wear.
Green Tea for Fat Burning
Green Tea is well known for its health benefits and calming effect on the mind and gastrointestinal distress. Yet, a lot of people are unaware that green tea and black tea both come from the same tea leaves! These two types of tea are just processed differently, which gives them their own unique flavors and colors.
Due to these production changes, green tea is known to have far more gut health benefits than black tea does.
One of the benefits appears to be helping with weight loss. The weight loss benefits of green tea are due to its high level of antioxidants. Its leaves contain a group of antioxidants known as catechins. In particular, green tea is abundant in epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG).
While more studies need to be conducted, research on the fat-blasting benefits of tea with ECGC is promising .
One study suggests that:
16 wk of EGCG was found to elevate mRNA expression of fat metabolism enzymes (MCAD, NRF-1, UCP3, and PPARα) in mouse skeletal muscle.”– Advances in Nutrition
When it comes to other benefits, you do not want to look too much further than a 2015 systematic review. This review looked at 22 studies totaling over 850,000 people and found that 3 or more cups of tea per day as associated with lower rates of:
- Coronary Heart Disease
- Cardiac Death
- Total Mortality
All of these drops were by at least 20%. That’s a lot of benefits of tea for just a couple of cups per day!
Herbal Tea for General & Gut Health
This is the first tea on our list that is actually not a tea at all. But hey, it’s like telling wild rice that it’s not really rice….or Pluto isn’t a planet…
Herbal teas often do not use any form of tea leaves. They are flavored juices of dehydrated flowers and fruit.
Herbal teas have an array of benefits, depending on the botanicals consumed. For instance, drinking chamomile tea is linked to a calmer mood and relaxed mind .
Other herbal teas, such as citrus-infused brews, can have extra antioxidants and vitamins that the body needs to thrive. Meanwhile, herbal teas made with root are great for gastrointestinal issues.
Popular herbs and the supposed benefits of tea infused with them:
- Peppermint – Anxiety/GI Issues
- Gingko Biloba – Memory
- Fennel – Blood Pressure
- Turmeric or Ginger – Anti-Inflammatory
There are so many types of herbal tea, it is hard to make any specific claims about the herbal tea genre as a whole. Part of the fun is tasting the tea. If there are health benefits of tea sprinkled in, that’s just a bonus!
Kombucha for a Healthy Gut Diet Plan
Ah, this is one is a favorite here at Thryve. Thankfully, kombucha tea has been growing in popularity in the past few years. This is because of the great health benefits that this type of tea has for your gut health!
For those of you who do not know, Kombucha tea is a tea that has been left to ferment for seven to thirty days. A non-toxic yeast known as a SCOBY is fermented in a tea. The SCOBY infuses the brew with beneficial bacteria. This process makes kombucha a must-drink beverage for those looking for gut healing foods.
Due to the probiotics, enzymes, and antioxidants, Kombucha is believed to reduce the risk for gastrointestinal problems such as stomach ulcers.
One study in particular compared the benefits of tea with kombucha to acid reflux and stomach ulcer remedy, Omeprazole .
The healing capacities of the tea extracts could be attributed to their antioxidant activity as well as the ability to protect the mucin content of the gastric tissues. In addition, the ability of KT4 (Kombucha) to reduce gastric acid secretion might also contribute to its ulcer-healing activity. The tea preparation KT4 (15 mg kg(-1)) was as effective as the positive control, omeprazole (3 mg kg(-1)) in ulcer forhealing.
This can be great for people who are prone to ulcers or may have other gastrointestinal issues.
Matcha for Liver Health
Matcha is actuality a version of green tea. It is made by taking young green tea leaves, and grinding them up until they are an easily dissolved powder. This is believed to make it far more beneficial for a healthy gut diet plan. You are consuming the whole tea leaf and not just the extractions of one.
One of the most significant benefits of green tea, whether it is Matcha or regular green tea, is how helpful it is for the liver. In fact, there have been studies of 800,000 people across three retrospective cohort studies, nine prospective cohort studies, and four cross-sectional studies that prove this. People who drank green tea daily were far likely to have liver disease or liver cirrhosis, among others .
There have been growing concerns over too much Matcha is a bad thing. News reports that excess green tea and Match can also cause liver disease. It’s true, too many catechins can create liver toxicity. You just have to go over ten cups of Matcha per day !
Oolong Tea for Weight Loss
Oolong tea is a popular form of tea in China, which is dried in the sun, and oxidized before being rolled and twisted. This is done to affect the flavor and strength of the tea.
The primary health benefit of Oolong tea seems to be that it helps with weight loss. There were not too many studies on this kind of tea, but a few smaller studies have suggested that consuming a couple of cups of oolong tea can burn an additional 50-80 Calories a day . This may seem trivial, but if you are trying to lose weight, this can help in the long term.
If you are serious about losing weight, the benefits of tea won’t be enough. The weight gain is because harmful bacteria have taken residence in your gut biome. To wipe them out, try out microbiome testing.
Using the Thryve at-home gut health test kit, our specialists can pinpoint the intestinal flora causing your gastrointestinal issues and weight gain. We then formulate a personalized probiotic based on the results of the microbiome testing. From there, we work with you on a healthy gut diet plan to feed your beneficial bacteria adequately!
White Tea for Cancer Prevention
This tea is far less processed than any of the other drinks on this list. White Tea is often leaves that have been dried, and not fermented, crushed, or anything else. As a result, this tea is far “lighter” and has a more mild taste than black or green teas. But what about its benefits?
Elevated levels of antioxidants have leaned specialists to suggest white tea might be a robust cancer-fighting agent, as exhibited in many clinical trials, although more information is needed .
How to Choose the Best Tea for Gut Health and Wellness
The best tea would be the one you prefer drinking, as none of us want you to feel as if you have to gulp down something you do not like just for some health benefits.
That said, if you will pick a tea, green tea seems to have the majority of the evidence behind their claims. So sit back, relax, and brew yourself a nice cup of tea!
 Harvard Health Publishing. “Health Benefits Linked to Drinking Tea.” Harvard Health, www.health.harvard.edu/press_releases/health-benefits-linked-to-drinking-tea.
 “Green and Black Tea Consumption and Risk of Stroke.” Stroke, www.ahajournals.org/doi/full/10.1161/STROKEAHA.108.538470.
 Shen, W., Xiao, Y., Ying, X., Li, S., Zhai, Y., Shang, X., … Lin, J. (2015). Tea Consumption and Cognitive Impairment: A Cross-Sectional Study among Chinese Elderly. PloS one, 10(9), e0137781. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0137781
 Hodgson, A. B., Randell, R. K., & Jeukendrup, A. E. (2013). The effect of green tea extract on fat oxidation at rest and during exercise: evidence of efficacy and proposed mechanisms. Advances in nutrition (Bethesda, Md.), 4(2), 129–140. doi:10.3945/an.112.003269
 Srivastava, J. K., Shankar, E., & Gupta, S. (2010). Chamomile: A herbal medicine of the past with bright future. Molecular medicine reports, 3(6), 895–901. doi:10.3892/mmr.2010.377
 Banerjee, Debashish, et al. “Comparative Healing Property of Kombucha Tea and Black Tea against Indomethacin-Induced Gastric Ulceration in Mice: Possible Mechanism of Action.” Food & Function, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Dec. 2010, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21776478.
 Jin, Xi, et al. “Green Tea Consumption and Liver Disease: a Systematic Review.” Liver International : Official Journal of the International Association for the Study of the Liver, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Aug. 2008, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18482271.
 “Green Tea & Liver Problems.” LIVESTRONG.COM, Leaf Group, www.livestrong.com/article/473429-green-tea-liver-problems/.
 Rumpler, W, et al. “Oolong Tea Increases Metabolic Rate and Fat Oxidation in Men.” The Journal of Nutrition, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Nov. 2001, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11694607.
 “Laboratory Study Suggests Potential Anti-Cancer Benefit of White Tea Extract.” National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 18 Jan. 2012, nccih.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/092110.htm.
 Hajiaghaalipour, Fatemeh, et al. “White Tea (Camellia Sinensis) Inhibits Proliferation of the Colon Cancer Cell Line, HT-29, Activates Caspases and Protects DNA of Normal Cells against Oxidative Damage.” Food Chemistry, U.S. National Library of Medicine, 15 Feb. 2015, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25236244.