Green tea is the Beyoncé of healthy drinks. It has even been called the healthiest drink on the planet because its health benefits are just too many. But should you drink green tea with honey?
Let us first look at its benefits before we get back to whether it is okay to drink tea with honey.
BENEFITS OF GREEN TEA
Green tea’s star ingredient is a catechin called epigallocatechin-3-gallate. It is a rather long and complex name; that is also known simply as EGCG.
EGCG has great benefits for the human body. Not only has it been found to treat various diseases, but it also helps fight free radicals and cell damage in the body. Free radicals are responsible for ageing and many other unpleasant things.
Given that green tea is rich in antioxidants, it has been purported to lower certain cancers’ risk in some studies. However, more studies need to be conducted to confidently declare the place of green tea in the fight against cancer.
Green tea has caffeine, not almost as much as the one in coffee, but just enough to keep you alert and focused.
It is also very low in calories, making it a great drink to take during intermittent fasting. Even if you are not fasting, it will contribute very little to your daily calorie count. Studies show green tea can also help you lose weight and burn body fat, especially belly fat.
If you have ever had or come across someone with bad breath, then you know it is one of the most unfortunate things that can ever happen to someone.
Thankfully, studies reveal that green tea can actually combat the bacteria that cause plaque, cavities, tooth decay and therefore, bad breath.
A study in Japan revealed that participants who took a lot of green tea reduced their Type 2 Diabetes risk by 42%.
The threat of Diabetes continues to grow worldwide. Green tea offers respite by increasing insulin sensitivity in the body and lowering blood sugar levels.
SHOULD YOU DRINK GREEN TEA WITH HONEY?
The benefits aside, should you drink green tea with honey? Why would anyone want to add honey to this magic drink anyway?
The thing is, green tea is bitter. It has catechins, chlorophyll and caffeine, and while all these compounds have great benefits, they are bitter.
The catechins in green tea make it more bitter than conventional tea. Its boon is somehow a bane too when it comes to taste.
In fact, most people cannot stand green tea because of how bitter it is. They prefer to add honey to the drink to temper the taste of using sugar, which is out of the question.
Honey has its own individual benefits and has been used for centuries for its wound-healing, bacteria-fighting properties.
It also has antioxidants of its own and helps fight bad breath. But does this mean you can drink green tea with honey?
Green tea is the best drunk in its natural form, without any additives whatsoever. Fervent drinkers of green tea who have overcome the bitter taste barrier wouldn’t trade it for anything.
They like its unique flavours derived from the blend of different compounds. If you really have to drink green tea with honey, take note of the following:
HONEY IS HIGH IN CALORIES
Honey is very high in calories, so proceed with moderation. If you are taking green tea for weight loss, it would be counterintuitive to add a lot of sugar to an otherwise perfectly healthy drink.
If you are counting daily caloric intake, remember that honey can really offset your calculations. You have to be very careful about the quantities.
HONEY IS HIGH IN SUGAR
You have made a fine choice, choosing to substitute sugar with honey. Lord knows a list on the evils of sugar would take forever to write.
However, this does not erase the fact that honey is also very high in sugar, and you will be taking sugar, just in an alternative form.
If you are watching your sugar intake, this is something you need to take note off.
RAW HONEY IS BEST
Not only is raw honey best, but it is also expensive. Sneaky manufacturers sometimes sneak ins syrups and all sorts of things to their honey.
Some types of honey have also been over-processed with lots as additives and chemicals. If you choose to drink green tea with honey that is not raw and natural, it might offset the tea’s good benefits.
AVOID ADDING HONEY TO HOT WATER
Very hot water may affect the composition of honey and water down its benefits. In some cases, adding honey to very hot water may even be toxic. So, you want to be very careful when you drink green tea with honey.
If you can consider all these things and remain aware of the amounts of honey you are adding, you may very well drink green tea with honey. You will be reaping both the benefits of honey and green tea.
HOW TO PREVENT GREEN TEA FROM BEING BITTER
How else can you rid green tea of its characteristic bitter taste?
DO NOT LET IT STEEP FOR TOO LONG
When you let teas steep for too long, most of them become bitter. Even white, black and oolong teas. Green tea is already bitter because of the catechins and its unoxidized state.
If you let it steep or boil for too long, it will become too bitter. You will then have to drink green tea with honey or other additives to make it palatable. Steeping should not go anywhere beyond 3 minutes.
USE COOLER WATER
Hot water draws out the bitter guys – namely catechins, chlorophyll and caffeine. Boiling water may also interfere with the L-theanine compound, which has a very distinct, lovable taste.
You can boil your water but let it cool fast before adding your green tea.
Reduce the number of leaves
If you notice your tea is consistently bitter, you might be adding too much. You might think that adding more might double the benefits, but this is hardly true. Add around 2-3 grams or less to a cup, not any more.
MIX IT WITH NATURAL JUICE
Most natural juices are low in calories, sugars and as healthy as can be. If you don’t want to drink green tea with honey, mix it with your favourite natural juice.
Just make sure one does not override the taste of the other. Keep experimenting until you find that sweet spot.
Having read all this, should you now drink green tea with honey? If possible, take your green tea in its most natural, simplest form. If not, a little honey won’t hurt.
Honey will not interfere with the chemical composition of green tea, so you should okay.
If honey is not an option, try the tips listed above to make your green tea less bitter, so you may not have to add anything to it.[related_posts_by_tax posts_per_page="4"]