Living a long, healthy life doesn’t need to be an arduous task. In fact, it could be as simple as drinking a cup of tea. The question is: what type of tea.
Mounting scientific evidence has been pointing towards a certain type of tea that has multiple health benefits.
For instance, it may help to improve heart health, reduce blood sugar levels and aid weight loss.
So what is this health-boosting tea? The answer is masala chai tea.
The fragrant beverage tastes sweet and spicy – thanks to its combination of black tea, ginger and other spices.
The most popular spices include cardamon, cinnamon, fennel, black pepper and cloves.
But it’s not unusual for star anise, coriander seeds and peppercorns to be mixed in with masala chai tea.
The drink is typically brewed using both warm water and warm milk – and premixed teabags are available at supermarkets.
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Researchers from the Department of Human Nutrition, at NWFP Agricultural University in Pakistan, noted how the tea could help improve a person’s health.
They found that cinnamon – one of the spices present in masala chai tea – reduces “bad” cholesterol by up to 30 percent within six weeks.
“Bad” cholesterol – otherwise known as LDL cholesterol – “contributes to fatty build-ups in arteries”, states the American Heart Association.
The charity adds: “This condition narrows the arteries and increases the risk for heart attack and stroke.”
Those who work for the School of Nutritional Sciences and Dietetics, in Iran, researched how ginger helps to reduce blood sugar levels.
Ginger is integral to masala chai tea, and its health properties were investigated by the research team.
Their study involved 41 participants who had type 2 diabetes. Twenty-two of them were given two grams of ginger for three months.
The other 19 participants were given a placebo for the same amount of time.
How to live longer: Masala chai tea is full of health-boosting spices
Results found that those consuming ginger everyday had blood sugar levels reduced by 12 percent.
High blood sugar levels (hyperglycaemia) can be dangerous over a prolonged period of time.
The NHS confirms: “Regularly having high blood sugar levels for long periods of time can result in permanent damage to body parts.
“[This can affect] the eyes, nerves, kidneys and blood vessels.”
The masala chai tea is generally prepared with cow’s milk or soy milk – both of which are great sources of protein.
Researchers from Lund University, in Sweden, concluded that “protein had a pronounced effect on suppressing appetite”.
Over-eating is greatly linked with obesity, which dramatically decreases a person’s overall wellbeing.
By drinking masala chai tea, a person may keep to an ideal weight, improve their heart health and keep blood sugar levels down.