Who doesn’t enjoy a delicious cup of tea, whether hot or iced, it is seen as a healthy beverage, but don’t be fooled, there is toxicity lurking in that tea. As with most foods today, some caution is warranted, especially as to the origin of the tea, and it’s delivery envelope.
Toxic Tea and non toxic tea
Most of the world’s tea is grown in Asia with some specialty teas grown in South America. Asian teas are known for their variety, from black teas to white teas and the bitter green teas. Unfortunately, many of the Asian teas come with some added heavy metals such as lead and arsenic. Much of the toxic tea grown in China and India naturally absorb these heavy metals which are in the soil. When the tea steeps in water, the water extracts not only the flavor, but also the embedded heavy metals and pesticides used on the tea bushes. Independent tests have shown that teas grown in the Darjeeling region of north India, Taiwan and Sri Lanka are for the most part not burdened by these heavy metals, so Darjeeling tea and most Oolong teas are safe to consume whether hot or cold.
Yerba Mate, a non toxic tea
Japanese green tea is prized the world over for its delicious texture and flavor, unfortunately, the growing region for green tea is close to the Fukushima nuclear plant and is now thoroughly irradiated. Though Chinese green tea is of lower quality, it would seem to be a better choice for years to come. South America also is a green tea growing region, mostly in Uruguay, Brasil, and Argentina, however, this tea known as Yerba Mate has a different pleasing effect than Asian teas. Yerba Mate is the national drink in Argentina and Uruguay, and for good reason, it may be bitter, but it has a wonderful wake me up effect that at the same time nourishes the body with vitamins, minerals and enzymes. Yerba Mate, stimulates many of the body’s system, including the nervous, lymphatic, circulatory and hormonal systems. It will help with focus and concentration without the jittery effect of coffee. One helping of loose leaf Yerba Mate will last most of a full day in terms of positive effects.
One of the most important aspects of drinking tea is the delivery vehicle, whether it is a blanched tea bag or a nylon tea bag. It is possible that you purchase a great quality tea but have the tea bag be toxic. Blanched tea bags are made that way by using dioxide to make them pristine white, but the danger comes when the dioxin residue leeches into your cup of water. In order to avoid dioxins, some tea sellers have switched to a nylon tea bag, and even charge a premium for that, but don’t be fooled, these nylon bags have BPA, or hormone disruptors. So, with conventional tea bags you get a bit more than just tea in your cup.
What to do? One of the best ways to avoid excess toxicity when drinking tea is to buy your tea in bulk and simply put it in a tea ball made of non-toxic metal or a tea pot with an internal container to soak the tea. So, make sure your tea is from a good source and make sure your delivery vehicle is non toxic. If tea bleached tea bags are your only available delivery vehicle, then the brands that tested the least toxic were, Rishi Tea, Traditional Medicinals and Numi tea. To health, Cheers….