It May Be Time to Ditch Soda for TeaWoman


Woman Drinking Tea

Ditching the soda habit is a tough task.  Diet soda is a slight upgrade, but still not a healthy long-term choice.  Water is the best choice among all the beverages for weight loss and long term health.  But if water just isn't appealing, tea is a great choice.

Tea, strictly speaking, is the term used for Camelia Sinensis, the tea plant.  Tea is also loosely used to describe herbal “teas”, or herbal preparations.  Herbal tea, Rooibos, and Yerba Mate being among the most popular “teas”.

Unsweetened tea, hot or cold, is not appealing to many people as it is bitter.  Sweet tea or sweetened tea is more popular because it cuts that bitterness.   The standard tea bags that are available are usually orange pekoe, and it is the dust, bits (fannings), and stems of the tea that is milled into those bags.  The tea is low in quality, and is easily made flat or bitter. 

Most people have not experienced the variety that is available, had it prepared properly, nor had tea of any quality. Higher quality tea that is steeped and strained for the appropriate amount of time, whether served iced or hot, is much less bitter, and carries with it a range of perfumes and qualities that easily eclipse those of standard tea bags.  Black teas are oxidized teas.  Oolongs are only partially oxidized, and green and white teas are unoxidized. 

Good quality tea in each of these categories offers a wide variety of flavors and colors, many of which one would not want to mask with sugar.  Their delicate flavors sing as they pass over the palate, and even high quality tea is cheaper than soda per cup. The added benefit, particularly for green tea, is the antioxidant content.  

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