Tea has many important vitamins, minerals and antioxidants needed for a healthy body. This is why tea has been used as a medicine for many years and is, with the backing of modern research, still being used for that reason. Drinking tea has been associated with good oral health and prevention of certain cancers and heart disease.
Oxidation of our body elements results in the formation of very reactive substances known as free radicals. Free radicals cause damage to our cells, which can eventually lead to heart disease and cancer. Antioxidants found in our diet help prevent free radical attacks. Vitamins A, C and E are popular antioxidants. Both green and black teas also contain antioxidants known as flavenoids which play a critical role in protecting us from heart disease and cancer.
Black tea contains the vitamins listed below. Each has an important unique function necessary for maintaining good health.
Carotene – a precursor to Vitamin A (Retinol) serves as an antioxidant.
Thiamine (B1) and Riboflavin (B2) – both play an integral part in releasing energy from food.
Vitamin C – is important in maintaining a healthy immune system. It functions as an antioxidant aids detoxification and acts as a structural component in the collagen fibers of gums.
Folic Acid – plays a role in cell division and amino acid synthesis.
Nicotinic Acid and Panthothenic Acid – are important for the release of energy from carbohydrates and fats.
Tea is also a rich source of three very important minerals.
Manganese – is a co-factor for an enzyme known to prevent oxidative damage. Drinking several cups of tea a day can provide you with almost half your daily manganese requirement.
Potassium – is one of the body’s main electrolytes and thus plays a critical role in water balance as well as the body’s acid-base balance. Potassium is also necessary for the transmission of nerve impulses. A deficiency results in aberrant heartbeats, fatigue and localized cramping.
Fluoride – is another mineral found in great abundance in tea. In fact, tea is one of the very few natural sources of fluoride. Fluoride has made its mark as the most successful agent against tooth decay. Scientists encourage drinking tea to improve oral health and to prevent tooth and gum decay.