Common Tea Myths
Posted on March 15 2017
There are quite a few urban legends floating around regarding tea. Therefore we decided to create a list with the most common myths about this fantastic drink.
DIFFERENT TEAS COME FROM DIFFERENT PLANTS
White, green, black, yellow, pu'erh, dark, earl grey, English breakfast all come from the same plant: Camellia Sinensis.
TEA DOESN'T HAVE AN EXPIRY DATE
Tea is an agricultural product, which means the longer you keep it around, the staler it gets. If you leave tea in your cupboard for a year, it won't be so fresh as it once was, even if it tastes the same it will gradually lose its antioxidants.
To guarantee that your tea is fresh and keeps all its antioxidants, you should consume it 6 months from the date of picking (it is different from the date of packaging). Besides, you should either store it in a sealed container in a cool, dark place, or drink it up quickly.
It is important to you to be aware that different types of tea have different expiry dates.
TEA BAGS ARE JUST AS GOOD AS LOOSE LEAVES
The quality of tea depends only on 2 elements: type of leaves and the method of processing. The highest quality teas are usually orthodox hand-rolled loose leaves, made from the tenderest shoots and unopened buds.
HERBAL 'TEA' IS TEA
'Teas' like peppermint, camomile, strawberry, rhubarb are known as 'infusions' and not 'tea', meaning that they are made from the infusion of herbs, spices or plants in hot water.
Usually, the word 'tea' can only be used to describe those 'teas' made with leaves of the plan Camellia Sinensis. Moreover, herbal 'tea' is caffeine-free and do not have antioxidants that tea does, but there are some blends that incorporate tea leaves.
THE BRITS INVENTED THE TEA BAG
It was the Americans who invented the teabag, although there are some records of loose-leaf bags being used in ancient China.
Thomas Sullivan, created by accident the first tea bag around 1908. Sullivan started to send tea samples in small silken bags, to its consumers. They simply assumed that those samples were supposed to be used in the same way as the metal infusers, using the entire bag into the pot rather than emptying out its contents.
TEA BREAKS ARE A MODERN PHENOMENON
Tea breaks are part of the industrialised and developing world for more than 200 years. Workers started to work around 5 am or 6 am, allowed to have a morning break, where tea and food were served.
GREEN TEA IS HEALTHIER THAN BLACK TEA
Green tea is often labelled as the healthiest tea, normally when compared to black tea. But the truth is that both black and green tea come from the same plant - Camellia Sinensis.
In fact, both green and black tea contain powerful and beneficial antioxidant. Through fermentation and oxidation, green tea leaf can turn into a black tea leaf; during the process of transformation, the antioxidants in green tea - catechins - are converted into the antioxidants in black tea (theaflavins).
GREEN TEA IS HIGHLY CAFFEINATED
Black tea contains more caffeine than green tea, so if you want a nice cup of caffeine kick without coffee, opt for black tea instead of green tea.
UK IS THE BIGGEST CONSUMER OF TEA IN THE WORLD
Altought UK, China and India do consume huge amounts of tea per day, it is the Republic of Ireland who consumes more tea per capita.