Mad Hatter: Would you like a little more tea?
Alice: Well, I haven’t had any yet, so I can’t very well take more.
March Hare: Ah, you mean you can’t very well take less.
Mad Hatter: Yes. You can always take more than nothing.
Perhaps the Mad Hatter wasn’t so mad after all.
The benefits of drinking tea are becoming more widely known with the rest of the world learning what Asian countries (and celebrities like Oprah and Gwyneth Paltrow) have known for years. While ancient Chinese doctors prescribed tea as a cure for headaches and even an elixir for immortality, modern science today tells us more about the benefits of tea drinking:
- Tea contains numerous antioxidants. These help slow down the aging process and can help cells regenerate and repair themselves. Many studies also suggest that antioxidants assist in preventing cancer.
- Tea helps keep our mouths healthy. Compounds found in tea can fight cavities and help reduce plaque by killing or suppressing growth and acid production of cavity causing bacteria in our mouths.
- Tea keeps you hydrated. Every cup of tea you drink (especially those lower in caffeine) counts as a cup of water towards your daily intake.
- Tea may reduce the risk of stroke or heart attack by preventing the formation of dangerous blood clots in the arteries.
- Tea can lower blood pressure. Studies have shown that drinking green tea daily can reduce your risk of hypertension by up to 50%.
- Tea aids your digestive system. Used for thousands of years as an after-meal digestive aid, tea can also help relieve stomach cramps.
- Tea may help prevent diabetes. There is some evidence to suggest that green tea might help lower the risk of getting Type 2 diabetes.
- Tea boosts your immune system. A study comparing the immune activity levels of coffee drinkers vs. tea drinkers found that the tea drinkers have levels of up to five times higher.
Amazingly, bamboo itself can be brewed into a rich and delicious tea.
Bamboo Leaf Tea is a South Korean tea made from the leaves of young bamboo plants. The process to make them into tea involves roasting, steam boiling and scenting. Bamboo Leaf Tea is rich in fiber and protein and unlike some other teas, it is caffeine-free. With a light golden color and faint bamboo aroma, this is a very smooth tea. While it resembles a green tea in appearance, its taste is distinctively bamboo. And it’s an efficient tea leaf with the ability to re-steep at least two times without getting bitter.
The introduction of bamboo tea to the tea-drinking world is relatively new. It wasn’t until 1994 that research began on health benefits of bamboo tea at the Chonnam National University in South Korea. Patents were granted in 2002 and production of Bamboo Leaf Tea started on a large scale. While it is still difficult to find in the United States, it can be purchased online at sites such as Casa di Culture.
Not to be confused with Bamboo Leaf Tea is the Chinese Green Bamboo Tea. First made by a monk near the top of the famous Buddhist Mountain Emei Shan, this tea actually contains no bamboo. The name derived from the unique shaping method created by the monk. Local government officials noticed its flat, glossy bamboo leaf shape and rich emerald color and so deemed it Green Bamboo Tea. With a mellow taste and sweet aroma, it is popular among both locals and tourists.
Take advantage of the soothing qualities of Bamboo tea by brewing up a cup tonight and enjoying it with a long relaxing bath. Be sure to wrap yourself in these luxurious bamboo bath towels when finished. Or enjoy your cup of hot tea with a good book and snuggle up in bamboo loungewear with this incredibly soft bamboo blanket or in your bamboo bedding. Prefer waking up with tea? Brew up a pot in the morning and enjoy while easing into the day in your comfortable bathrobe.