Celebrate National Iced Tea DayPosted: June 10, 2014
Take it from the Brits – adding some daily cup and saucer time with coffee’s little cousin is a worthy activity. As the #1 tea-drinking country, the UK averages a combined 165 million cups of tea per day (vs. 70 million cups of coffee).
The U.S.’s consumption isn’t quite as large, but when we do sit down for teatime, approximately 85% of it is iced. Here at LifeVest, we believe nothing’s more refreshing on a warm day than a tall, minty green jasmine over a few cool cubes, which makes us excited to announce today is National Iced Tea Day. We’re even more excited to participate given, all of the health benefits a cup can bring:
- Simmer down your blood pressure: More people visit doctors for high blood pressure than for any other condition, aside from the common cold. A recent study found that those who sipped 3 cups of a hibiscus tea daily lowered systolic blood pressure by 7 points in just over a handful of weeks, likely due to the phytochemicals in the flower. Many herbal teas contain hibiscus; look for blends that list it near the top of the ingredient makeup.
- A summer sunscreen backup: Green tea polyphenols protect against UV light-induced skin damage, a 2011 study shows. Don’t ditch your sunscreen, but since UV ray exposure is directly linked to skin cancer, why not do double duty with an iced green in your hands?
- Spike your taste buds (calorie-free), calm your blood sugar: Research shows Tea contains natural antioxidants that may slow the passage of glucose into the bloodstream and prevent blood sugar spikes, which is an important step in managing type 2 diabetes. Black tea had the highest effect, followed by white and oolong teas. Bonus: add a few dashes of cinnamon on top, a spice shown to also help control blood pressure levels., and steer clear of the sugar bowl.
Today (and all this week) we invite you to celebrate with us:
Soda comes with empty calories. Coffee with dubious and addicting caffeine. Juice with an abundance of sugar. Tea with an array of antioxidants and health benefits…Guess which one gets our vote?
Outside of H20, when you reach for a beverage this week, make it tea. From green to white to herbal, test out a variety to reap the most health benefits, since all bring their own power to the table. If you’re curious about the differences between each type, Real Simple‘s got the scoop, here.
Just make sure when you opt for black tea to limit yourself to 2 cups, since this is the most caffeinated variety. (Two cups of black tea is equivalent to the caffeine in approximately one cup of coffee). Try to limit added honey and sugar, too, to keep your glass relatively calorie-free. See above for a simple, low-sugar recipe with which we’ll be celebrating.