Tea: The History and Science of the Worlds Healthiest Beverage (Better Your Life Book 1)

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How fruit juice went from health food to junk food | Life and style | The Guardian

There may be health benefits to drinking tea and coffee, but if you take your tea or coffee with sugar, honey or syrups it can add up. Adding a 5g teaspoon of sugar to 5 cups of tea or coffee over the day adds calories or kcals over the week — the same amount of energy as 20 rich tea biscuits or three Mars bars. Fruit juice is sweet already, but fruit juice drinks usually have sugar added to them as well. Before you choose a juice, have a look at the ingredients list to see if sugar has been added.

Tropical fruit juice drinks such as mango or lychee or drinks made from cranberries, raspberries or cherries are often the ones to watch for. If you like these drinks, look for no-added-sugar versions, though bear in mind they will still contain fruit juice and therefore sugar.

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Diluting a small amount of squash with water can make it seem quite harmless, but in actual fact a squash or cordial made with sugar comes with around 3 teaspoons of sugar per glass. No-added sugar versions would be a better choice - and they should also cost you less than sugar-sweetened versions now the levy on sugar sweetened drinks has been introduced. Fruit-flavoured fizzy drinks like lemonade and fizzy orange are slightly better choices than cola, but not ideal as your regular drink.

The combination of sugar and acid can damage your teeth, and over time, excess calories from a high-sugar diet can lead to weight gain. Sugar-free versions of all these drinks are a better option see sugar-free drinks, above and the sugar content will vary between brands, so check the nutrition information if you are going for the option with sugar.

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Quinine has been found to interact with some medications has been linked with irregular heart rhythms. Tonic water gets its bitter flavour from quinine. Choose a sugar-free cola instead, or even better, switch to water or unsweetened tea or coffee. Energy drinks come with a price premium due to their added ingredients such as taurine and guarana, as well as caffeine. In reality, the energy in energy drinks mainly comes from sugar. Energy drinks are also not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women and children. In March , UK supermarkets decided to stop selling them to children under But if you are relying on these drinks regularly as a pick-me-up it might be better to try to tackle the reasons why you feel low on energy.

While these drinks are unlikely to ever be a healthy option, you can ask for changes to cut down on the calories, saturated fat and sugar. Ask for drinks to be made with low-fat milk and sugar-free syrups and avoid marshmallows on top.


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Keep whipped cream on top for an occasional treat and ask for a small amount rather than the regular serving. Freak shakes can come in at over 1, calories — more than half of what you need for an entire day. A regular ice cream milkshake can have twice the calories of a similar sized full-sugar cola, but if you go for extras such as chocolate or biscuits blended in, the calories go even higher. Even regular milkshake drinks without ice-cream will be high in sugar — some contain 10 tsp of sugar in a single bottle.

These over-the-top creations made from ice-cream milkshake layered with cake, cream and extra decorations such as chocolate or sweets, can come in at over 1, calories — more than half of what you need for an entire day.

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Tea served before the Ming Dynasty was typically made from tea bricks.

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Upon harvesting, the tea leaves were either partially dried or were thoroughly dried and ground before being pressed into bricks. The pressing of Pu-erh is likely a vestige of this process. Tea bricks were also sometimes used as currency. The ground and whisked teas used at that time called for dark and patterned bowls in which the texture of the tea powder suspension could be enjoyed. The best of these bowls, glazed in patterns with names like oil spot, partridge-feather, hare's fur, and tortoise shell, are highly valued today.

The patterned holding bowl and tea mixture were often lauded in the period's poetry with phrases such as "partridge in swirling clouds" or "snow on hare's fur". Tea in this period was enjoyed more for its patterns and less for its flavour.

Tea culture

After , the Hongwu Emperor , the founder of the Ming Dynasty , decreed that tributes of tea to the court were to be changed from brick to loose-leaf form. The imperial decree quickly transformed the tea drinking habits of the people, changing from whisked teas to steeped teas. The arrival of the new method for preparing tea also required the creation or use of new vessels. Teawares made with a special kind of purple clay Zisha from Yixing went on to develop during this period Ming Dynasty.

The structure of purple clay made it advantageous material with tiny and high density, preferred for heat preservation and perviousness. Simplicity and rusticity dominated the idea of purple clay teaware decoration art. It became soon the most popular method of performing Chinese tea ceremony , which often combines literature, calligraphy , painting and seal cutting in Chinese culture. The loose-leaf tea and the purple clay teaware is still the preferred method of preparing tea in Chinese daily life. The English-style tea has evolved into a new local style of drink, the Hong Kong-style milk tea , more often simply "milk tea", in Hong Kong by using evaporated milk instead of ordinary milk.

Traditional Chinese tea , including green tea , flower tea , jasmine tea , and Pu-erh tea , are also common, and are served at dim sum restaurant during yum cha. Darye literally refers to "etiquette for tea" or "tea rite. Central to the Korean approach to tea is an easy and natural coherence, with fewer formal rituals, fewer absolutes, greater freedom for relaxation, and more creativity in enjoying a wider variety of teas, services, and conversation. Green tea's traditional role in Japanese society is as a drink for special guests and special occasions.

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Green tea is served in many companies during afternoon breaks. Japanese often buy sweets for their colleagues when on vacation or business trips. These snacks are usually enjoyed with green tea. Tea will also be prepared for visitors coming for meetings to companies and for guests visiting Japanese homes. A thermos full of green tea is a staple on family or school outings as an accompaniment to bento box lunches.

Families often bring along proper Japanese teacups to enhance the enjoyment of the traditional drink. The strong cultural association the Japanese have with green tea has made it the most popular beverage to drink with traditional Japanese cuisine, such as sushi , sashimi , and tempura. At a restaurant, a cup of green tea is often served with meals at no extra charge, with as many refills as desired.

The best traditional Japanese restaurants take as much care in choosing the tea they serve as in preparing the food itself. Many Japanese are still taught the proper art of the centuries-old tea ceremony as well. Still, the Japanese now enjoy green tea processed using state of the art technology.

Today, hand pressing—a method demonstrated to tourists—is taught only as a technique preserved as a part of the Japanese cultural tradition. Most of the ubiquitous vending machines also carry a wide selection of both hot and cold bottled teas. Oolong tea enjoys considerable popularity.

Black tea , often with milk or lemon, is served ubiquitously in cafes, coffee shops, and restaurants. Other infusions bearing the name cha are barley tea mugi-cha which is popular as a cold drink in the summer, buckwheat tea soba-cha , and hydrangea tea ama-cha. Butter, milk, and salt are added to brewed tea and churned to form a hot drink called Po cha bod ja , where bod means Tibetan and ja tea in Tibet , Bhutan , and Nepal.

The concoction is sometimes called cha su mar , mainly in Kham, or Eastern Tibet. Traditionally, the drink is made with a domestic brick tea and yak 's milk, then mixed in a churn for several minutes. Using a generic black tea, milk and butter, and shaking or blending work well too, although the unique taste of yak milk is difficult to replicate. Tibet tea drinking has many rules.


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One such concerns an invitation to a house for tea. The host will first pour some highland barley wine. The guest must dip his finger in the wine and flick some away. This will be done three times to represent respect for the Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha. The cup will then be refilled two more times and on the last time it must be emptied or the host will be insulted. After this the host will present a gift of butter tea to the guest, who will accept it without touching the rim of the bowl. The guest will then pour a glass for himself, and must finish the glass or be seen as rude. There are two main teas that go with the tea culture.

The teas are butter tea and sweet milk tea. These two teas are only found in Tibet. There are many tea shops in Tibet selling these teas, which travelers often take for their main hydration source. Myanmar formerly Burma is one of very few countries where tea is not only drunk but eaten as lahpet —pickled tea served with various accompaniments.

In the Shan State of Myanmar where most of the tea is grown, and also Kachin State , tea is dry-roasted in a pan before adding boiling water to make green tea. Tea sweetened with milk is known as lahpet yeijo made with acho jauk sweet dry or black tea and prepared the Indian way, brewed and sweetened with condensed milk.

It is a very popular drink although the middle classes by and large appear to prefer coffee most of the time.

It was introduced to Myanmar by Indian immigrants some of whom set up teashops known as kaka hsaing , later evolving to just lahpetyei hsaing teashop. Burma's street culture is basically a tea culture [5] as people, mostly men but also women and families, gather in tea shops drinking Indian tea served with a diverse range of snacks from cream cakes to Chinese fried breadsticks youtiao and steamed buns baozi to Indian naan bread and samosas.