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Tea is hospitable and healthy page 2
Tea is hospitable and healthy

 Visit the Photo Place
Date published: 8/1/2004


Studies released this spring following men in Athens, Greece, and women in Paris, France, found similar results: People who drink wine or tea (both of which have antioxidants) were less likely to experience heart disease.

Maryland researchers have found that giving people five cups of black tea daily helped their unhealthy LDL cholesterol levels fall by 10 percent, compared with a group not drinking tea. And another study found that when people drank four cups of tea daily after a heart attack, they were less likely to suffer a second attack.

Tea helps teeth, too

Tea may protect against tooth decay. Not only does it contain natural fluoride, important in keeping teeth strong, it also appears to kill cavity-causing germs, according to researchers at University of Illinois College of Dentistry. Don't give up your toothpaste yet, though, as dark teas can stain teeth.

Thousands of teas to try

Within the basic black, green, oolong and white types, there are about 3,000 varieties of tea. Gourmets search for the best tea the same way they choose fine wines, searching different estates around the world. The tea shrub grows on mountainsides in more than a dozen countries, including China, Kenya, India, Sri Lanka, Turkey and now even Argentina. Along with different varieties of leaves with names such as Darjeeling and Ceylon, there are more than a dozen different quality grades, which I don't pretend to understand.

Make that decaf?

Many tea lovers frown upon decaffeinated tea as having less flavor. You can make your own good-tasting almost entirely decaffeinated tea, according to the Tea Association of Canada. They say by brewing twice, you can take out nearly all the caffeine, which dissolves in water. The association Web site instructs you to boil double the water you would normally need and pour half of it over the leaves, brewing tea for about 30 seconds, then discarding the tea liquid and pouring fresh water over the wet leaves. Supposedly the second brew has less caffeine, which can be important for pregnant women and people suffering from anxiety or irregular heartbeats.

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