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Friday, September 16, 2011

It's Tea Time!

For well over the better part of the year now, my husband and I have become quite the fond drinkers of tea... hot tea that is. Prior to discovering this calming, smooth, and aromatic warm beverage, we were avid coffee drinkers. But, once we began noticing the wonderful effects from just a daily cup of tea in the place of our normal morning beverage, we soon gave up our ritualistic coffee habits and were converted to tea gurus.

I myself currently prefer to have a cup of tea on limited occasion because I'm currently breastfeeding. While there is a vast amount of research that suggests that breast milk contains minute amounts of what mother intakes (when she herself takes in small quantities), I still prefer to remain on the safe side. I don't want Miss Audrey consuming too much, if any, caffeine. But I'll admit that I do occasionally have a very small cup from time to time because it is very tasty and, I find, relaxing.

My husband, on the other hand, prefers a cup of tea every morning to get him going. He may warm up the pot later in the day for an afternoon cup as well. Depending on the day, it's whatever he fancies.

I suppose it's a personal preference to drink tea or coffee (or even both), but here's what we discovered after making the switch:

While a cup of coffee may have made us feel instantly awake after consumption, it soon thereafter left us feeling dehydrated and sometimes more tired than before. Tea, on the other hand, left us feeling awake and revived with little or no "slow feeling" after-effects. We also noticed with tea, that we were less likely to add much, if anything, to it. Maybe a little sugar. Perhaps a tiny pour of milk (like the English prefer to have it). But, with coffee, we generally would add a good size helping of creamer, which can be quite fattening if used repeatedly and in large quantities. Another thing we've found to be true about tea is that because tea generally contains less caffeine than the same size amount of coffee, it isn't as traumatic on our bodies if were to skip having it all together. With coffee we've noticed that if we were to skip having it at a given setting, our bodies (and minds) would not be happy at all - we've experienced headaches (sometimes even migraines), slower reflexes, and nausea. Skipping a cup of tea wasn't quite as traumatizing.

I don't want to dismiss coffee. I actually think it's quite tasty too (especially the flavored coffees at Star Bucks). I was merely explaining why we've found that switching from coffee to tea every morning (or on occasion) has been very beneficial for us.

Tea and Coffee though can both have health benefits when consumed on a regular basis. According to certain research, tea consumption can help build a strong immune system, promote weight loss, lower cholesterol, and reduce risks of heart disease and developing cancer. Coffee can also help fight developing cancer and reduce the risk of Type II Diabetes and strokes. (TheColorofTea.com). 

In the tea vs. coffee debate, while tea contains less caffeine than coffee, it does have more antioxidants, which as we all know is super for our health, like reducing cancers and certain diseases. Tea also offers a wide variety of flavors. Some of our favorite teas include: Chai Tea, English Breakfast Tea, Jasmine Tea, and Peach Tea.

So, with all that being said, I suppose it's just comes down to a matter of preference. I'll probably never give up an occasional Vanilla Mocha Cappuccino from my local Star Bucks, but I'll keep that tea kettle brewing from time to time too.

And check out these chic modern tea cups my husband picked up from the tea shop, Teavana, during his trip to Colorado earlier this week:

These cute little Japanese tea cups are 3 ounce cast iron. 

The tea cups below are also Japanese. They are 6 and 7 ounce porcelain tea cups.

(My favorite of all five is the one you see here on it's side.)

Our girls are also sweet little admirers of tea time. Check out their little collection :)
 (Nana Glover got them this set for Easter earlier this year). 

If you haven't already explored the wonderful world of tea, I highly recommend you do. I think you just might enjoy it!  :)

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