There was a time I craved coffee and nothing but. I would drink six cups of a day. I didn’t care if the beans had come direct from the shady slopes of Ethiopia and roasted by hand in Seattle by a guy with a six-foot-long beard, or it was crystals of instant. I just wanted that bitter black stuff in my gut to keep myself upright. If I could have taken it intravenously, I would have.
Then I met Avantika. She introduced me to real tea. Not that stuff collecting dust in the back of mom’s cupboard. Whole Leaf Assam tea possessing depth of character and a full body. A tea with a malty, honey aroma that makes you want to get out of bed and throw open the curtains. A tea that dances about your taste buds with a lively taste and pleasant pungency.
And that was just the beginning. Since then I’ve come to experience a range of delightful teas, from our own gardens, and around the world. I am a proud tea addict. I’m never going back to coffee.
For all of you who are still drinking coffee, here is 18 reasons why tea is better:
- It’s easier to brew a quality cup of tea than a good cup of coffee. To make a decent cup of coffee you need either a coffee maker, fancy pour over, or a French press- all of which you must clean. Sure, you can make a cup of instant like I did in the Peace Corps, but one cannot call that quality. But tea? Thanks to advances in pyramid tea bag technology, you can get a loose-leaf quality brew with no effort or mess.
- The diversity of tea greatly surpasses coffee. Coffee has 41 varietals. These are all essentially processed the same, with different temperatures and roasting times defining the difference between roasts. On the other hand, Assam might have more than 41 varieties in commercial production alone, notwithstanding the rest of the world. There are hundreds of ways of making tea, which go beyond simply changing the temperature dial. All totaled, there are at least 3,000 different types of tea.
- Patrick Stewart drinks tea. And who doesn’t aspire to be as cool as Patrick Stewart.
- Antioxidants in tea, specifically green tea, improve muscle capacity and running endurance. Seems I’m already training for my third marathon.
- Tea—especially green tea— has compounds likely to reduce your risk of cancer according to the National Cancer Institute. Green tea possesses polyphenols and black teas have theaflavins and thearubigins. These compounds have antioxidant properties, and may protect cells from DNA damage caused by reactive oxygen species. The polyphenols in green tea have also demonstrated an ability to inhibit tumor cell proliferation and induce apoptosis in laboratory and animal studies.
- Tea is better at hydrating you.
- Tea reduces stress thanks to the presence of L-theanine. L-theanine is an amino acid found only in tea. It works in the brain to reduce the binding of certain neuro-chemicals that affect stress. L-theanine consumptions have been show in the lab to reduce both reported and physiological signs of stress in mental arithmetic tasks. So, drink tea before your math test.
- Not only will tea reduce your stress but it will improve your cognitive performance thanks to beneficial interactions between L-theanine and caffeine, both of which are present in tea.
- Tea can help strengthen your bones. A study in Australia found drinking black tea was associated with lower risk of fracture-related hospitalizations in elderly women.
- Brewing a cup of tea has a lower carbon foot print. 21 g of CO2 for to boil a cup of black tea, 340 g of CO2 for a latte.
- Growing tea likely has a lower environmental foot print than coffee. Tea has a higher brewed cup per acre yield, and likely beats coffee in energy used for manufacture and transport.
- Tea descriptions are so much more awesome. Take this description of our TGFOP1 from the Global Tea Championship: Tea possessing depth of character. When have you heard of coffee described as having character?
- Tea is prettier than coffee. Who wouldn’t want to look at a bright green or golden amber liquor over black sludge?
- Tea grades have awesome names. Finest Tippy Golden Flower Orange Pekoe, Pu-erh, Silver Needle, for example.
- Tea is gentler on stomach. The acidity of coffee can cause you to over produce your own digestive acids and create problems such as upset stomach to ulcers. Tea less so.
- Tea doesn’t leave you crashing. Thanks to the L-theanine and lower caffeine levels.
- Tea parties. You can have a coffee break, or cap an evening with a sweet liquor. However, only tea can justify a celebration on its own.
You still think coffee is better than tea? You can let us know why in the comments. BUT it’s most likely because you haven’t had a truly great cup of tea yet.