Here is all you need to know about tea and coffee.
We know that things can get kinda hazy first thing in the morning.
That’s when many people want a hot, steaming cup of wake-up call.
What’s a calorie-free drinker to do?
Let’s first learn about “Caffeine”
Our ability to tolerate caffeine is genetic.
Some of us are “fast metabolizers”, meaning we process caffeine effectively and it doesn’t cause us health problems. Others are “slow metabolizers”, which means that in excess, caffeine can increase our risk of disease.
In general, most folks are fine with 100–400 mg of caffeine a day, which is about 1 to 3 small cups of coffee or about 2 to 4 cups of regular black tea.
Many people also find that caffeine worsens carb cravings or hypoglycemia symptoms. If you find yourself jittery and sugar-jonesing an hour or two after a coffee, consider drinking less coffee, or cutting it with decaf.
Let’s talk about the perfect cup of tea
After being plucked from the Camellia sinensis plant, tea is fermented and processed.
The more processing (heating and drying) the tea leaves undergo, the darker they turn. Green tea and white tea are the least processed tea, while black and oolong teas are partially dried, crushed, and fermented.
Regardless of the processing method, black, green, white and oolong teas all contain polyphenols. In fact, tea ranks as high as or higher than many fruits and vegetables in the ORAC score, a score that measures antioxidant potential of plant-based foods.
Tea has about half the caffeine of coffee and many health benefits. For instance, tea:
contains antioxidant polyphenols that help protect your body from harmful free radicals and even cancer;
- reduces your risk of heart attack and stroke by keeping your arteries smooth and clog free;
- increases metabolic rate, speeds up fat oxidation, and improves insulin sensitivity;
- boosts your immune system;
- helps lower cortisol levels after a stressful event; and
- a whole heck of a lot more!
Now all those benefits mentioned above come with only black tea. Now we know most of us especially Indians like to add milk and sugar in their tea. That’s where it’s magic starts to fade away. We also noticed that a lot of people like to have some non nutritional food with tea. Nothing wrong with having tea with milk and a side snack, we just need to make it a little better so that it helps you reach your goal.
Now let’s break down the tea a little more in detail macronutrients wise.
Tea with or without sugar falls under the category of carb (because of milk and sugar). If you are having a snack with tea specially deep fried snacks then it falls under carbohydrate and fat of the “eat less” category food.
So how can we make it better ? Let’s start replacing the snacks first with more nutritious food which can be protein, vegetables or fat which are the rest of 3 important components of a balanced meal.
Option 1: By adding egg (protein and fat) in any form (boiled or fried), and raw cucumber / carrot (vegetable)
Option 2: By adding mixed peanuts/chana/onion/tomato salad (chana for protein, peanuts for fat, and remaining items for vegetables)
Option 3: pan fried sprouts salad (sprouts for protein, oil used for fat and remaining salad items like onion/tomato/chilli/cucumber for vegetables)
Option 4: Just dry roast some peanuts in a pan, you can add some coconut oil and some spices to make it tastier and enjoy with your tea. Sprinkle some chopped cucumber or onion to make it more fuller.
You get the idea here. Be creative and experiment with the nutritious food for your snack with tea.
Now let’s talk about the “Sugar” you add in your tea. If you like your tea without sugar then just ignore this section. We also want to be very clear about the fact that anything that tastes sweet has the same effect as sugar. So whether it is white sugar, brown sugar, powder sugar, sweetener, jaggery, honey everything falls under the category of “Sugar”.
Strategy to eliminate sugar from your tea
It is not going to happen overnight. So start very small. If you are adding 2 tablespoon of sugar in your tea currently for example, then just make 1 & 1/2 tablespoon for the first 15 days. Next 15 days make it 1 tablespoon and then ½ spoon and then finally eliminate it completely.
Start with loose tea. Tea bags usually contain lower quality “dust” tea, a sort of waste product left over from sorting the higher quality loose leaf tea.
(Of course, if you have bags, you can still use them. But loose leaf is better stuff, so consider upgrading!)
The perfect cup of coffee
If you’re used to drinking a coffee-type drink that’s more like liquid chocolate cake, drinking black coffee can be kind of a hairy experience at first.
The flavor of black coffee can be intense. The viscosity is different. There’s a hint of acidity, almost a sourness in some blends.
But (we think) black coffee can also have a richer, more nuanced taste. This is especially true if you get an Americano, which uses espresso as a base and steam-brews it rather than drip-brewing.
We suggest you consume less, but consume better quality. And have a better experience while doing it.
So today, consume less — in terms of calories, that is. But consume better.
The Sugar-Snack concept is the same here as we discussed above.
There’s a reason that the Japanese tea ceremony is a careful, slow experience: It asks us to pause during our busy day and just enjoy the moment.
With your next cup of coffee or tea, just take a few extra minutes to slow down.
Sniff it. Taste it. Like, really taste it. Watch the steam rise.
Use coffee or tea drinking as a way to step briefly out of your busy day and into a moment of calm and focus.
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