According to the International Institute for Sustainable Development, tea is the second most consumed beverage in the world after water. Discovered thousands of years ago, tea was used as a medicinal drink until about the seventh century when it gained popularity as a drink to be sipped and enjoyed.
The health benefits of tea are frequently touted everywhere from fitness magazines to health and wellness blogs. But is all tea the same? And is tea really good for you?
Here we look at everything tea, including what distinguishes one kind of tea from another, and which teas are Right 4 Your Type.
Three main kinds of tea
A stroll through any tea shop or down the breakfast aisle of your local supermarket may give the impression that there are dozens of teas. Partly this is due to the word “tea” having a generic meaning of drinks made with water and botanical ingredients. Another reason for the huge variety is that some tea products use just one ingredient and others get their soothing or energizing flavors by blending. In the narrowest meaning of tea (sometimes called “true tea”) there are basically three types: black, oolong and green. Though they have different flavors, aromas and appearances, all three are leaves of the same plant – the Camellia sinensis bush. The difference between them lies in how they are processed after being harvested.
Darker teas such as black tea and oolong tea go through a process known as oxidation. Oxidation occurs when the tea leaves go through a series of chemical reactions after being exposed to oxygen. The level of oxidation determines the type of tea. Black tea goes through an intense oxidation process where the rolled leaves are kept in a warm, moist environment to promote an interaction between enzymes and oxygen. This process changes the chemical properties of the tea and releases tannins, which cause a darker color and a more robust flavor. Green tea, however, is not oxidized. Instead, the leaves are dried soon after harvest through either pan frying or steaming.
Green tea: A nutritional powerhouse
Green tea is beneficial for all blood types and by far the healthiest choice. Green tea is closer to its natural form than dark teas, such as black tea. Since it is not oxidized and minimally processed, green tea is rich in nutrients and antioxidants. It has been called a nutritional powerhouse because it helps to increase gut microbiome diversity and may boost immunity.
Green tea is still used today in traditional Chinese medicine for a variety of ailments including better digestion, improved heart function, mental health and more. Its anti-inflammatory properties are well known and offer a range of health benefits.
There are many green teas available on the market, but one recommended by Dr. Peter D’Adamo is Mr. Itaru’s Green Tea. Right for all blood types, Mr. Itaru’s Green Tea uses a base of the highest quality green tea leaves, tailored to maximize antioxidant boost, and incorporates toasted brown rice for a rich, smooth texture.
Does it matter which type of tea I drink?
Tea is an excellent example of why it’s important to check Dr. Peter D'Adamo's TypeBase Food Values page. for beverages in addition to foods. Processing a natural product before consumption can dramatically alter its health benefits and something as seemingly innocuous as tea can actually be harmful for certain blood types. Be sure to make the right choices for you.
When it comes to black tea, the only blood type that should even consider it is Blood Type B. It’s not a beneficial for any blood type and should be avoided by 75% of Blood Type Diet followers. Green tea, however, is beneficial for all blood types.
For those who prefer more fruity or herbal flavors when it comes to tea, there are a variety of tea blends on the market to satisfy them, however many of these contain avoid ingredients. That’s why Dr. Peter D’Adamo has blended premium organic green tea with botanical elements to deliver both flavor and health benefits in a steaming (or iced) cup. Our Sip Right 4 Your Type loose tea blends suit the unique biological needs of each blood type. For example, for Blood Type As, his Sip Right 4 Your Type Tea (Blood Type A) combines green tea with licorice and chamomile, complemented by rosehips and sweetened with pineapple flavor. There is a uniquely flavored blend for every blood type. Think ginger for Blood Type Os, peppermint for Bs and hawthorn berries for AB individuals. Find the blend Right For Your Type here. And if you don’t already know your blood type, our Original Home Blood-Typing Kit is safe, easy and inexpensive.
Enjoy your tea all year long
Most people think of tea as a fall and winter beverage, but a refreshing glass of iced tea is perfect for hot summer days. While bottled teas tend to be heavily sweetened, iced tea made from quality green tea tastes great without any additives and is a refreshing (and healthy) alternative to lemonade or flavored waters. It’s easy to make and can be prepared ahead of time.
Tea is a wonderful addition to any diet, but like anything you consume, it must be personalized to your unique genetic makeup to make a truly positive impact. For the most benefits, stick to green tea, which contains one of the highest concentrations of antioxidants in any tea. Be careful when buying blended teas, looking out for hidden sweeteners or ingredients that are not a good fit for your blood type. If you are new to the world of loose tea, you might find specialty tea products such as stainless steel or unbleached paper tea filters helpful for brewing the perfect cup.