With the winter months ahead of us we will all be craving something hot. Tea is a common hot beverage but few people think about what’s in their teas. Since I love my teas, especially silver needle tea, I thought this article would shed some light on what goes into tea and why buying certain brands is actually just as important as eating organic meats!
While modern tea is nothing like the ancient teas from the chineses dynasties. We still think of it as a clean source of caffeine. Many supplement boast of the benefits of green teas and add them to their wide variety of ingredients. However, very few people talk about the negative affects of tea. Just like coffee, teas of today are sprayed with heavy chemicals, and pesticides.
After the tea is sprayed with pesticides, it’s not washed but dried, or roasted, then placed directly into bags for us to steep! One of the largest brands, Celestial Seasons has been issued several warnings already by the FDA. These warning were due to high amounts of pesticide. The contents of chemicals in the bags were so high that they were above the recommendations for the U.S. guidelines.
If you think you are safe drinking expensive loose leaf teas from high end brands like Teavana, then think again. An independent study performed on their oolong loose leaf tea products showed over 22 various pesticides. 100 percent of their tea contained pesticides. As we know Europe has much stricter guidelines for pesticides. 77 percent of their teas would not pass government tests in the UK.
Tea Bag Safety
Now that I’ve discussed the tea, lets talk about the bags. Keep in mind that there are two very common bags. One is paper, which most people think is safe. WRONG!
GET THIS: Many paper tea bags are treated with epichlorohydrin, a compound mainly used in the production of epoxy resins. Considered a potential carcinogen by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health2 (NIOSH), epichlorohydrin is also used as a pesticide. When epichlorohydrin comes in contact with water, it hydrolyzes to 3-MCPD, which has been shown to cause cancer in animals. It has also been implicated in infertility (it has a spermatoxic effect in male rats) and suppressed immune function (source).
So lets look at the plastic based bags. They are also a huge error. These plastics leach into the hot water that your drinking. While the plastics have been considered “safe” they still have the ability to pass chemicals in to hot water (source).
So what’s the solution to all these chemicals that you could be drinking while thinking you were being healthy? First off, pass on the unnatural flavorings. Buy teas that are organic and steep the tea in traditional way, by steeping the leafes without the additional bag. Check the packages to make sure there are no GMO additives such as soy and cornstarch.
I’ll be the first to admit that his information on, what’s in your tea, has made me re-think all of my awesome brands (or so I thought). The tea shrine that I have in my kitchen is going to get a SERIOUS makeover.