Jasmine Green Tea Cup and Petals

Science is an incredible thing, isn't it? Plants are in fact, also incredible, but because of science, we have this ever increasing body of knowledge that can break down exactly what is in a plant, how it works, and its effects on our body.

For instance, we know that tea and coffee both have rich antioxidant profiles with beneficial polyphenols and health benefits. We can test the levels of caffeine in both drinks and understand how caffeine works, how it enters your blood stream, and gives you an energy boost. And-- this is something that is not commonly known, but because of science, we also know--tea contains a compound called theanine, which coffee does not. Theanine is an amino acid that acts on the body to increase happy hormone levels such as seretonin, dopamine, and GABA, and is linked to anxiety suppression. That calming yet alert stage that some find with tea but not coffee is attribution to the combination of caffeine for alertness plus theanine, which smooths out the jittery effects of caffeine.

Everyone is different of course, so not everyone responds in the same way to what they consume. That is why some people can drink 4 cups of coffee and feel great, while others can greatly feel the effects of a minute amount of coffee. That being said, if you find you are sensitive to coffee, it is good to know that you don't necessarily have to cut out all caffeine.

Black, green and oolong teas all contain theanine, but green and oolong tea contains it at higher, more concentrated levels. And of course there are caffeine-free herbal teas/tisanes for those who want to skip the caffeine all together.

As always, be aware that this is not health advice and should not be taken as such. Information on this blog and website should be taken as opinion and not a statement of fact. Plants are potent and can have medicinal effects and impacts not stated herein. Please consult with your doctor before making any changes, especially if you have a health condition, are pregnant, or are taking medication.