This is why using tea bags can be harmful for your health!

This is why using tea bags can be harmful for your health!

Tea bags including the high-end ones contain pesticide residues and flavouring agents. Would you still use them?

Written by Tania Tarafdar |Updated : May 12, 2017 3:33 PM IST

I was with a friend at a tea cafe the other day. I being a lover of Darjeeling tea ordered that particular one. As I waited for my order to be served, I had all the images of hot, flavoured tea popping in my head. To my disappointment, I had to DIY the tea served to me by adding the sugar and milk and dipping the tea bag. But as I dropped the tea bag, I noticed some froth formation in the water. This triggered me to do some research to find out if brewing tea using a tea bag was safe enough. Here s what I found.

Yes, a tea bag is convenient. But if a tea bag is your favourite brew, there is bad news. Tea bags are sometimes coated with the epichlorohydrin, a carcinogen that is active in hot water [1]. As an alternative to paper tea bags, tea bags are now also produced from plastics like PVC and food-grade nylon which begin to break down in water at room temperature [2]. Additionally, many tea bags including the high-end ones also contain pesticide residues and flavouring agent, says nutritionist Aditi Rampal. So while tea leaves take a longer time to brew, it can always be a better idea to choose tea leaves over tea bags. Here are 8 reasons that will make you grab that cup of masala chai right now.

Go for loose organic tea leaves as they have higher levels of antioxidants and other health-boosting compounds. Going for organic tea would also mean that the pesticides levels would be low. If you have never brewed tea with tea leaves, here s how you can do it.

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  • In boiling water, put two tablespoons of organic, dried green tea leaves or any other tea leaves of your choice.
  • Let it steep for 15-20 minutes and then strain.
  • You can add some lemon and some sweetener according to your taste and enjoy your hot cup of tea. Say cheers to good health with these 8 herbal teas.

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[1] and [2]: Schwalfenberg, G., Genuis, S. J., & Rodushkin, I. (2013). The Benefits and Risks of Consuming Brewed Tea: Beware of Toxic Element Contamination. Journal of Toxicology, 2013, 370460. http://doi.org/10.1155/2013/370460

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