Dont Add Milk or Cream to Tea ; Milk Block Tea's Benefit
There are four basic types of true tea: black tea, oolong tea, green tea, and white tea. Tea is often drunk at social events, such as afternoon tea and the tea party. It may be drunk early in the day to heighten alertness; Tea is a natural source of methylxanthines such as caffeine , catechins, and theanine. It has almost no carbohydrates, fat, or protein. It has a cooling, slightly bitter and astringent taste.
Instant tea has fewer antioxidants than brewed tea. This is because processing of tea reduces its antioxidant content, and instant tea is more highly processed than brewed tea. Decaffeinated tea also has fewer antioxidants than caffeinated teas.
Many teas are traditionally drunk with milk. These include Indian chai, and British tea blends. These teas tend to be very hearty varieties which can be tasted through the milk, such as Assams, or the East Friesian blend. Milk is thought to neutralise remaining tannins and reduce acidity.
Researchers conclude that drinking black or green tea may help reduce a potentially harmful constriction of blood vessels after a high-fat meal. Their study, presented this month at the scientific session of the American College of Cardiologists in Atlanta, adds to a growing body of research that suggests antioxidant-rich foods and beverages may help to prevent heart disease.
While compounds found in green tea offer some protective health benefits, research hasn't shown that they boost fertility. Green tea, which is made from unfermented tea leaves, contains chemicals called polyphenols. Experts believe that these chemicals act as antioxidants, substances that protect the body's cells from damage that can lead to cancer and other diseases.
One small Stanford University study of a nutritional supplement containing green tea extract, chasteberry, folic acid, and a host of other vitamins and minerals showed promising results.
Antioxidants protect cells from potentially damaging by-products created when oxygen is metabolized or used by the body. Antioxidants may reduce the risk of some forms of cancer, heart disease and stroke. Tea contains flavonoid antioxidants.Vitamins C and E, both antioxidants, may help improve the ability of arteries to dilate when taken with a high-fat meal.
Although,plenty of studies have suggested that tea is a boon for cardiovascular health, new research has found that adding milk to your favorite brew negates those benefits.
The culprits in milk is a group of proteins called caseins that interact with tea, decreasing the concentration of catechin -- the flavonoids in tea that are responsible for its protective effects against heart disease, according to the study authors.
"There are a lot of studies that show that tea is protective against cardiac diseases," said lead researcher Dr. Verena Stangl, professor of cardiology at the Charite Hospital, Universitatsmedizin-Berlin, in Germany. "If you look at the studies, you see that in Asia there are less cardiac diseases, but in England that's not the case. So the question is, is the addition of milk a reason for this difference between Asia and England, where tea is often taken with milk?" she said.
In the study, 16 healthy postmenopausal women drank either half a liter of freshly brewed black tea, black tea with 10 percent skimmed milk, or boiled water on three different occasions under similar conditions. The researchers then measured the function of the cells lining the brachial artery in the forearm, using high resolution ultrasound before and two hours after tea consumption.
Stangl's team found that black tea significantly improved the ability of the arteries to relax and expand. "But when we added milk, we found the biological effect of tea was completely abolished," she said.
Additional experiments on rat aortas and rat endothelial cells -- which line blood vessels -- found that tea relaxed the vessels. But adding milk blunted the effect.
"If you want to drink tea for its health effects, don't drink it with milk," Stangl said.
Stangl noted that not only does milk block tea's benefits for blood vessels, it also destroys the antioxidant effects of tea and perhaps its cancer-protective effects as well.
She said her team is also comparing the effects of green and black tea on the function of blood vessels. "It's a question whether green tea, with its higher catechin content, is better than black tea in regard to endothelial function," she said.
One expert agreed that you should hold the milk when drinking tea.
"This is actually something we tell patients to do -- not to have milk in tea," said Dr. Robert Vogel, a professor of medicine at the University of Maryland Medical School.
Tea is one of the greatest sources of antioxidants, Vogel said. "In countries where they drink a lot of tea, heart disease is decreased, except for the British Isles. It is typical in Great Britain to add milk."
Vogel's advice is simple. "Add lemon not milk. You should not add milk or cream to tea -- it's a very good drink, but not with milk," he said.