Tea and coffee are the two most popular beverages consumed in India. Today, as for a major chunk of population tea and coffee have become an inseparable part of their daily life but which one is healthier is it tea or coffee?
In this article, I’ll put forward what modern science talks about them and what Ayurvedic has to say about tea and coffee. I will also share with you my perspective on it, so if you drink tea, coffee or both then this might just be the info for you. Stay tuned!!
Tea vs. Coffee
To begin with, you should be aware of the fact that both tea and coffee were not consumed in India until a few centuries ago. While the tea culture in India was introduced by the British in the year 1836, coffee came to India well before the East India Company through an Indian Sufi saint named Bob Abu Don in the year 1670.
Today tea and coffee have become such an inseparable part of people’s lives that they fail to start their day without the sips of it but should you be drinking them daily?
Which is the better choice?
According to modern science, both tea and coffee are non-alcoholic flavored beverages that are safe for drinking. Yes, actually there have been quite a few scientific studies backing that both tea and coffee have health benefits. All the varieties of tea are packed with antioxidants which eliminate the free radicals, boosting immunity, reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart attack.
Tea also has a compound called EGCG which helps shrink the fat cells. Here it is important to talk about green tea versus black tea. Although green tea is marketed as one heavenly drink for weight loss by the companies, according to modern science, the only difference between them is that black tea is fermented while green tea isn’t. As a result, the natural amount of antioxidants and EGCG is higher in green tea.
Coming back to coffee, the latest reports of modern scientists on coffee suggest that it too can help in reducing the risk of various types of cancers, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. This is obviously because both these beverages have chemical compounds like caffeine and tannin.
Coffee is higher in caffeine and tea has more of tannin. While tannin prevents the absorption of iron in the body making it vulnerable to anemia it also leads to discoloration of the tea. Caffeine, on the other hand, is a stimulant that robs the calcium of the bones, instantly increases the heart rate and blood pressure. Basically caffeine is a mild drug that gives you instant energy and then suddenly crashes.
It is Addictive
Once you get habituated to it, you can’t do without it this is the reason you might have heard people complaining that
“don’t talk to me until I have my morning cup of coffee”
“I can’t work without coffee on my desk.”
Let’s compare regular coffee with green coffee
This is another attempt by the companies to replicate the success of green tea again. Green coffee beans or the coffee beans that have not yet been roasted. As a result, green coffee beans contain a higher amount of chlorogenic acid which is known to have some health benefits. So comparatively green coffee beans have more positives but the downsides are also the same if consumed too much.
So how much is too much??
Well, modern science is quite liberal with the amount of tea and coffee that you can consume every day. It says that you won’t be facing any major side effects until you are not having more than four cups of tea or coffee daily. But before you go and grab your cup of coffee there is cash. There is bad news for you if you’re having the habit of drinking tea or coffee first thing in the morning.
In accordance with modern medical science tea and coffee work best for you if they are consumed thirty minutes after a meal, breakfast or lunch. Tea and coffee are best avoided after 5:00 p.m. as they may disturb your sleep cycle. So modern medical science is clear that both tea and coffee are good for you as long as you do not overdo with them. Keep a check at your sugar serving and drink them at the right time. Coffee is definitely higher in caffeine and hence more addictive.
Now let us see what Ayurveda as to say about these two popular beverages
First of all, Ayurveda has a simple funda for any food. If a particular food item doesn’t grow within the hundred-kilometer radius from your location, then that food item should not be a part of your daily diet. And for tea and coffee, this holds true for a major chunk of the Indian population. Now talking generally about tea and coffee, Ayurveda terms them extremely drying and something that increases heat in the body.
This is the reason in India chai has always been served with milk in it. According to Ayurveda, tea and coffee are highly acidic and disturbed gut health. Ayurveda also cautions that tea and coffee should only be consumed when the Kapha element of the body increases. Putting that simple, if you are down with a fever, having a runny nose, oily skin, suffering from cold and cough or sinus it’s only in these conditions tea and coffee can be consumed in little quantity as medicine.
Ayurveda strictly prohibits stimulating addictive substances like Caffeine for daily usage. Although Ayurveda has a much better substitute to offer which is rather alkaline, controls the blood sugar level and is excellent for the heart, it is Arjun Tea.
Arjun Tea – The Indian Tea
Arjun Tea is prepared from the bark of the Arjun tree. Arjun Tea has many benefits and absolutely no side effects. It can be prepared just like you make tea with milk. It actually is Indian chai in true sense. Even better is that you can consume it as your morning bed, Arjun Tea is easily available as well. So Ayurveda is firmed as to why tea and coffee are medicinal and should not be consumed daily. It suggests a better substitute in the form of Arjun Tea which has numerous benefits without any side effects to keep your body, mind, and soul healthy.
What’s my take on Tea vs. Coffee
Let’s be honest, tea and coffee have become such an integral part of her diet today that omitting them completely is kind of sacrilegious. Although if you are at a point where you can’t work normally without tea and coffee, isn’t it alarming? isn’t it an addiction? can’t we choose health over taste?
Of course, I understand that it’s not easy to stop consuming them at once. Having said that I strongly believe that one can easily begin replacing them with some really good options which serve the same purpose but do not adversely affect the mind and body in any way.
Definitely Arjun Tea is great. I have consumed it both with milk and without milk. really like that you must try it once. Then sometimes I drink an herbal concoction made out of boiling basil leaves, ginger, black pepper, and cloves. Once ready I sweeten it with honey or jaggery powder. It is so refreshing and even looks like black tea.
Then hot chocolate is another go-to option. Simply boil the milk and mix half a teaspoon of natural cocoa powder in it. High in magnesium, it gives you the much-needed boost of energy. I can any day replace tea, coffee with hot chocolate without compromising on taste and effect.
Then there are times when we just feel like drinking something hot. Trust me in those cases even hot water works so well and is also easily available in our offices. So my stand is clear that if you want to attain the optimum level of physical health and mental well-being, then stay away from stimulating drinks like tea and coffee altogether.
Switch to healthier alternatives instead-but if tea and coffee are more than a drink to you then there is no reason why you should not switch to Decaffeinated Coffee. With 97 percent less caffeine content, D-CAF coffee will taste almost the same but won’t have such a stimulating effect. Although it does pose some problems, you are still in a better state. Likewise, you should also make an attempt to sweeten them with jaggery powder or Mishri.
Not only are they alkaline which will neutralize the acidic effect of tea and coffee to some extent but will also keep you away from the nutritionless solids which we call sugar. Just the taste or taste with health the choice is yours.