How can you get the most health benefits from a cup of tea? Just the tea brew longer.
Higher levels of flavonoids and antioxidants result when tea is allowed to brew longer. These are the results of new study conducted by researchers from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland.
Flavonoids are compounds found in plants that help prevent damage to cells. Flavonoids are a class of antioxidants. Antioxidants generally minimize substances harmful to the body. All tea contain antioxidants.
Researchers made 1 cup of tea (researchers used loose tea equivalent to 1 tea bag). The tea bag was allowed to brew for 3, 5, 7 and 10 minutes. Researchers used 6 different brands of tea in the study.
The levels of flavonoids and antioxidants increased as the tea was allowed to brew longer. Tea allowed to steep for 7 minutes had 60% more flavonoids then tea brewed for 3 minutes. Each brand of tea released the same amount of flavonoids.