tea http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/2794/all en-US The 6 Most Surprisingly Unhealthy Beverages http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-most-surprisingly-unhealthy-beverages <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-6-most-surprisingly-unhealthy-beverages" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/boy-drinking-soda-101067133-small.jpg" alt="boy drinking soda" title="boy drinking soda" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Think what you're eating is what matters most in your diet? Maybe it's what you're washing it all down with that's really the problem. According to statistics compiled by the Harvard School of Public Health, the rising consumption of <a href="http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/healthy-drinks/sugary-drinks/#ref31">sugary drinks is a major contributor to obesity</a> in the United States. In fact, for about 25% of Americans, these drinks contribute 200 or more calories to their diet each day. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/22-reasons-to-stop-drinking-soda?ref=seealso">22 Reasons to Stop Drinking Soda</a>)</p> <p>Of course, the obvious culprit is soda (or &quot;pop,&quot; depending on where you live). Fizzy, sugary drinks are also the indulgence that get vilified the most in the press and nutritional publications. Unfortunately, that isn't the only unhealthy drink you should be avoiding. Check out these six surprisingly unhealthy beverages you may have overlooked.</p> <h2>1. Rice Milk</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/Rice%20Milk.jpg" /></p> <p>Cow's milk often gets a bad rap, whether for its saturated fat content, or the hormones that are too often fed to milking cows, or to the conditions in which those cows produce their milk. And while those may all be valid concerns, many milk substitutes have problems of their own. Rice milk, in particular, <a href="http://www.rd.com/slideshows/unhealthy-foods/#slideshow=slide11">is essentially just starchy water</a>; if it isn't fortified, it provides virtually nothing in the way of protein or vitamins. Much like soda, rice milk only promises empty calories.</p> <h2>2. Smoothies</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/smoothies.jpg" /></p> <p>When it comes to having a refreshing summer treat, a smoothie seems like a good bet. But you might be better off getting the ice cream. Because let's face it: That's what you really want anyway, and you probably won't be any worse off for it.</p> <p>Smoothies tend to start out as being pretty healthy. They often contain yogurt and fruit. But then, many smoothie and drink chains add sugar, protein powders, juice, and ice cream, ratcheting up the calories to as many as 500 per cup. That said, a few chains do make healthy, relatively low calorie smoothies. Just check the nutritional information rather than assuming that a smoothie is a health food. Or take control of what's in your smoothie by <a href="http://greatist.com/health/healthy-smoothie-recipes">making your own at home</a>.</p> <h2>3. Vitamin Water</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/Vitamin%20Water.jpg" alt="" /></p> <p>Vitamins and water. It sounds like a good combo, right? After all, our bodies need both. But before you pop the cap on one of these drinks, take a look at the label. Sure, there are plenty of vitamins, as promised. But there's also a lot of sugar. About 120 calories' worth in a typical bottle. That's less than what you'll find in the same about of soda, but not by much. And as for vitamins, well, even the leading vitamin water producer says <a href="http://foodidentitytheft.com/lawyers-for-vitaminwater-admit-drinks-health-benefits-not-meant-to-be-believed/">they probably won't do you much good</a>. Is it any wonder vitamin waters are hawked by major soft drink companies like Coca Cola?</p> <h2>4. Iced Tea</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/Iced%20Tea.jpg" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/drink-your-tea-types-health-benefits-and-how-to-brew-a-perfect-cup">Tea has tons of health benefits</a>, but when it's brewed and bottled and sold as iced tea, its health benefits get a little murky.</p> <p>Most people drink what those in Southern United States call &quot;sweet tea.&quot; According to the United States Department of Agriculture's Nutrient Database, a 12-ounce glass of iced sweet tea is almost entirely made of water and carbohydrates, with 136 calories, no fat, fiber, or protein, and 32 grams of sugar. Compare that to a typical can of soda, which has about 150 calories. Sure, there are some antioxidants in that tea, but in bottled varieties,<a href="http://www.mnn.com/food/healthy-eating/blogs/dont-drink-bottled-green-tea-for-antioxidants"> those levels are often pretty low</a>. In other words, iced tea isn't much better than soda unless you make your own and keep sugar to a minimum.</p> <h2>5. Fruit Juice</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/Fruit%20Juice.jpg" /></p> <p>A glass of fruit juice has long been represented on the USDA's Food Guide as a serving of fruit. Unfortunately, more recent research has found that while 100% fruit juice is made of fruit, it doesn't act like fruit in our bodies. Juice does include some vitamins and minerals, but it lacks whole fruit's fiber, which is what helps all the sugar in fruit enter our bloodstream at a slower rate. Plus,<a href="http://www.cbsnews.com/news/juice-as-bad-as-soda-docs-say/"> many fruit juices are as sugary as soft drinks</a>. In small quantities, the vitamins in juice make it a little healthier than soda, but not by much.</p> <h2>6. Diet Soda</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/Diet%20Soda.jpg" /></p> <p>If you're a diet soda lover, you probably know it isn't <em>healthy</em> for you, exactly, but you may assume think it's a cut above sugar-sweetened fizzy drinks. Unfortunately, calorie-free diet drinks aren't free of health consequences. According to a 2008 University of Minnesota study, just one diet soda a day is linked to an <a href="http://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/32/4/688.short">increased risk of metabolic syndrome.</a> A University of Texas Health Science Center study found that downing two or more cans of <a href="http://www.healthyhorns.utexas.edu/n_dietsoda.html">diet soda per day increased people's waistlines by 500%</a>. Diet soda consumption has even been linked to <a href="http://www.webmd.com/diet/news/20091102/diet-sodas-hard-on-the-kidneys">kidney problems</a> and <a href="http://www.drdavidwilliams.com/acid-reflux-and-soda-connection/#axzz39Z9xpQZy">acid reflux</a>.</p> <p>The bottom line? Many drinks that are marketed as being healthy &mdash; or healthier &mdash; are just as bad for your health as soda.</p> <p><em>Any other surprisingly unhealthy beverages? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tara-struyk">Tara Struyk</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-most-surprisingly-unhealthy-beverages">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-caffeine-is-in-that">How Much Caffeine is in That?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-health-foods-that-are-actually-making-you-fatter">10 Health Foods That Are Actually Making You Fatter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/22-reasons-to-stop-drinking-soda">22 Reasons to Stop Drinking Soda</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea">10 Reasons to Drink Tea</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unexpected-delicious-drinks-you-can-make-at-home">Unexpected, Delicious Drinks You Can Make at Home</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink beverages healthy food junk food pop soda tea unhealthy food Tue, 19 Aug 2014 21:00:05 +0000 Tara Struyk 1189082 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Surprising Benefits of: Caffeine http://www.wisebread.com/10-surprising-benefits-of-caffeine <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-surprising-benefits-of-caffeine" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/coffee-166669410.jpg" alt="woman holding mug" title="woman holding mug" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We live in a society with puritanical roots, and underlying much of our health philosophy is that anything pleasurable is surely bad for our health, our souls, or both. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-to-drink-coffee?ref=seealso">Reasons to Drink Coffee</a>)</p> <p>Especially if it's a drug. In the immortal words of South Park's school counselor Mr. Mackey, &quot;<a href="http://www.southparkstudios.com/clips/103414/drugs-are-bad">Drugs are bad.</a>&quot;</p> <p>So it's no surprise that many of us think of our morning cup of java as a guilty pleasure. It contains a drug: caffeine. The thing is, there's not much to be guilty about, unless you held up a barista to get that latte. Multiple studies have shown that caffeine &mdash; in moderation, of course &mdash; is good for you in a whole host of ways.</p> <h2>1. Caffeine May Ward Off Disease</h2> <p>Studies have linked coffee drinking to the prevention of <a href="http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2006-06/jaaj-cda060806.php">alcohol-related liver disease</a>, <a href="https://www.aan.com/pressroom/home/pressrelease/1096">Parkinson's</a> and <a href="http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120111133958.htm">type 2 diabetes</a>. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-cheap-ways-to-lower-your-blood-sugar?ref=seealso">Natural Ways to Lower Your Blood Sugar</a>)</p> <p>However, not all studies have been able to positively link coffee's benefits to the caffeine. There are lots of other things in coffee, like antioxidants.</p> <p>That said, one study specifically pegged caffeine levels in the blood to Alzheimer's disease; subjects over age 65 with the most caffeine in their bloodstream were the <a href="http://www.alphagalileo.org/ViewItem.aspx?ItemId=120795&amp;CultureCode=en">least likely to be diagnosed with Alzheimer's</a> or dementia.&nbsp;Even in this study, most of the subjects got their caffeine from coffee, so it still seems possible that the anti-dementia power ascribed to caffeine here could come from some other ingredient in coffee.</p> <p>The well-known Nurse's Health Study, which followed health professionals for 22 to 24 years, found that men and women who consumed more caffeine (mostly from coffee) were <a href="http://www.webmd.com/melanoma-skin-cancer/news/20120702/caffeine-linked-to-lower-skin-cancer-risk">less likely to develop skin cancer</a>.</p> <h2>2. Caffeine Can Boost Brain Function</h2> <p>Caffeine can't make you smarter, but it can improve focus and increase brain activity. One study showed that <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2006/HEALTH/01/11/caffeine.smarter/">subjects did better on a memory test</a> after a caffeine dose. Another study used an MRI machine to detect <a href="http://www.nutraingredients.com/Research/Caffeine-delivers-visible-boost-to-brain-activity">higher levels of brain activity after a dose</a>. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-improve-your-memory-and-even-get-a-little-smarter?ref=seealso">Ways to Improve Your Memory and Get Smarter</a>)</p> <h2>3. Caffeine Combats the Effects of Sleep Deprivation</h2> <p>Getting enough sleep is important, and you can't completely make up for lost sleep with caffeine. Yet, a jolt of the drug does more than help you stay conscious &mdash; sleepy test subjects really perform better on all kinds of tests after they've had it.</p> <p>A <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2006/HEALTH/01/11/caffeine.smarter/">military research psychologist remarked</a> that in sleep-deprived subjects, &quot;pretty much anything you measure will improve: reaction time, vigilance, attention, logical reasoning.&quot;</p> <h2>4. Caffeine Helps You Stay Awake</h2> <p>You thought I'd forget that one, did you? Although sleep is one of the most important things we need to stay healthy and sane, in some limited circumstances, the most important thing you can do is not sleep. You're on a long night drive? You're a soldier manning a checkpoint? You're a student teacher with 200 exams to grade by 9 a.m. tomorrow? Caffeine is there to help. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-survive-the-graveyard-shift-and-make-lots-of-money?ref=seealso">How to Survive the Graveyard Shift</a>)</p> <p>How does it work? <a href="http://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/drugs-alcohol/caffeine-awake.htm">Caffeine blocks the chemical adenosine</a>, whose job it is to make you drowsy. Without adenosine to slow them down, your neurons keep right on firing, and you don't feel like shutting down.</p> <h2>5. Caffeine May Fight Depression</h2> <p>Consuming <a href="http://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2013/07/drinking-coffee-may-reduce-risk-of-suicide-by-50/">caffeine cuts the risk of suicide by 50%</a>, one study found, probably because the drug &quot;may act as a mild antidepressant by boosting production of certain neurotransmitters in the brain, including serotonin, dopamine, and noradrenaline,&quot; according to the Harvard Gazette. Researchers were able to link this benefit specifically to caffeine, not just to coffee drinking in general.</p> <h2>6. Even If You're Not Depressed, Caffeine Elevates Your Mood</h2> <p>A biologist's study in 2000 found that test subjects' <a href="http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0091305700001921">mood improved after a morning cup of coffee or tea</a>. (Your research dollars at work!)</p> <p>Perhaps counterintuitively, <a href="http://www.calmclinic.com/anxiety/causes/coffee">mild caffeine consumption can even help calm anxiety</a>.</p> <h2>7. Caffeine Charges Up Your Body, Too</h2> <p>When asked about the baseball steroids controversy of the 1990s, Joe DiMaggio said that all he had ever used was &quot;half a cup of coffee&quot; from the clubhouse. It may not be banned in baseball, but caffeine has been shown in study after study to boost both endurance and short-term athletic performance.</p> <h2>8. Caffeine Can Be Medicine</h2> <ul> <li> <p>Caffeine is included in a number of over-the-counter analgesics because it enhances and speeds up these drugs' effectiveness.</p> </li> <li> <p>Caffeine can combat common headaches, which are usually caused by constricting blood vessels around the brain. Caffeine dilates those blood vessels, and research shows this effect <a href="http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn1491-caffeine-key-to-curing-a-headache.html">cures headaches better than ibuprofen</a>.</p> </li> <li> <p>The same dilation effect has landed caffeine a spot in <a href="http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-1275419/Best-cure-migraine-headaches-cup-coffee-two.html">over-the-counter migraine drugs as well</a>.</p> </li> <li> <p>Caffeine in combination with painkillers have been proven to <a href="http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn19942-is-coffee-the-real-cure-for-a-hangover.html">cure hangover symptoms in rats</a>. Caffeine blocks alcohol byproduct acetate.</p> </li> <li> <p>Parkinson's Disease patients have a slightly easier time <a href="https://www.aan.com/pressroom/home/pressrelease/1096">controlling their movements after taking caffeine pills</a>, one study showed.</p> </li> <li> <p>Theodore Roosevelt is said to have started his &quot;gallon a day&quot; coffee habit to counteract his childhood asthma, and indeed, caffeine has been clinically proven to modestly <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0010864/">improve lung function in asthma patients</a>.</p> </li> <li> <p>Like other stimulants, caffeine has been shown to have a <a href="http://psychcentral.com/lib/caffeines-effect-on-adhd-symptoms/0003050">positive impact on ADHD symptoms</a>.</p> </li> </ul> <h2>9. Caffeine Might Help You Lose Weight</h2> <p><a href="http://www.mayoclinic.org/caffeine/expert-answers/faq-20058459">Caffeine stimulates thermogenesis</a> &mdash; the process of burning food for calories &mdash; but the effect probably isn't enough to produce significant weight loss, according to the Mayo Clinic. The jury is still out on whether caffeine's appetite suppressing effects actually help people lose weight. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-foods-that-help-you-fight-fat?ref=seealso">Foods That Help You Fight Fat</a>)</p> <p>But hey. When you're trying to eat less and exercise more, ingesting a hot cup of coffee might help you feel satisfied without taking in calories, and if it gives you the energy to hop on your bike and burn calories, all the better. On the other hand, beware of calorie-laden caffeinated drinks like colas, and remember that sleep deprivation causes weight gain.</p> <h2>10. Caffeine Is a Slug-i-Cide</h2> <p>Plants such as the coffee bush use caffeine as a natural insecticide, so it shouldn't come as a shock that researchers in Hawaii found success using a weak caffeine solution to control slugs. But be warned: Too much coffee, tea, or other caffeine-containing liquids can hurt plants, so use with care.</p> <h2>Counterpoints and Caveats</h2> <p>Not everyone agrees that caffeine is a net benefit, and there can almost always be too much of a good thing.</p> <ul> <li> <p>While most caffeine users report various mental and physical boosts due to the drug, it could be that test subjects might have <a href="http://www.forbes.com/sites/travisbradberry/2012/08/21/caffeine-the-silent-killer-of-emotional-intelligence/">developed caffeine dependency</a>&nbsp;and need the drug to return to normal abilities.</p> </li> <li> <p>And the Mayo Clinic says that although the association between caffeine and heart disease for the general population has been wiped away by research, <a href="http://www.mayoclinic.org/coffee-and-health/expert-answers/faq-20058339">the drug can still cause heart problems for some individuals</a>. <a href="http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/caffeine.html">Pregnant and nursing women</a> are advised to limit their consumption of caffeine as well.</p> </li> <li> <p>Probably the biggest danger associated with overuse of caffeine is sleep disturbance. Research is linking <a href="http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/excessive-sleepiness-10/10-results-sleep-loss">lack of sleep to more and more health problems</a>, from heart disease to weight gain to depression. So if your caffeine use interferes with your ability to get a good night's sleep, the benefits probably aren't worth that one big drawback.</p> </li> </ul> <p><em>What's your favorite thing about caffeine?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-surprising-benefits-of-caffeine">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stop-being-a-slave-to-starbucks-how-to-quit-caffeine">Stop Being a Slave to Starbucks - How to Quit Caffeine</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea">10 Reasons to Drink Tea</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-caffeine-is-in-that">How Much Caffeine is in That?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-save-money-on-your-cup-of-coffee">9 Ways to Save Money on Your Cup of Coffee</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unexpected-delicious-drinks-you-can-make-at-home">Unexpected, Delicious Drinks You Can Make at Home</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Health and Beauty caffeine coffee tea Mon, 03 Mar 2014 11:24:18 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1128214 at http://www.wisebread.com Drink Your Tea: Types, Health Benefits, and How to Brew a Perfect Cup http://www.wisebread.com/drink-your-tea-types-health-benefits-and-how-to-brew-a-perfect-cup <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/drink-your-tea-types-health-benefits-and-how-to-brew-a-perfect-cup" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/drink-79255021.jpg" alt="pouring tea" title="pouring tea" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Ralph Waldo Emerson said, &quot;There is a great deal of poetry and fine sentiment in a chest of tea.&quot; On any given day <a href="http://www.teausa.com/14655/tea-fact-sheet">158 million Americans drink tea</a> &mdash; and for good reason. Different types of tea have been shown to boost the immune system, regulate cholesterol, and fight cancer with significant supplies of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Plus, tea in its many forms feels comforting and tastes delicious. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/go-tea-go-the-10-best-online-tea-merchants?ref=seealso">The Best Online Tea Merchants</a>)</p> <p>Brewing the perfect cup of tea requires attention to the type of tea, the length of time it steeps, and the temperature of the water. Each type of tea requires a unique mix of these variables to maximize health benefits and flavor.</p> <p>Below are six common types of tea, their characteristics and health benefits, and instructions on how to steep each one perfectly. Tea can either be loose and placed in an infuser or steeped in pre-packaged tea bags. The brewing instructions are the same for both. The longer tea steeps, the stronger the flavor. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/from-sweet-tea-to-chai-delicious-homemade-tea-recipes?ref=seealso">Delicious Homemade Tea Recipes</a>)</p> <h2>White</h2> <p>Primarily grown in China, white tea comes from the traditional tea plant, <em>Camellia sinensis</em>, and is very lightly oxidized. This means that the leaves are left in a climate-controlled environment to be exposed to air. The more oxidation the tea leaves have, the stronger the flavor of the final product. It has been shown to <a href="http://www.journal-inflammation.com/content/8/1/27">improve circulation and reduce inflamation</a> and while <a href="http://www.biomedcentral.com/1472-6882/9/27/abstract">imparting powerful antioxidants</a>. White tea contains caffeine. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-terrific-and-surprising-uses-for-tea?ref=seealso">10 Surprising Uses for Tea</a>)</p> <p><strong>Preparation:</strong> Boil water and let it cool for 4 minutes before adding the tea. Steep white tea for 2&ndash;4 minutes.</p> <h2>Green</h2> <p>Green tea comes from the same plant as white tea. However, green tea undergoes slightly more oxidation than white tea giving it a slight bitter flavor. It has been shown to <a href="http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1038/oby.2011.139/abstract;jsessionid=FD75DC2D833C08575E1F9359687B7DDF.d03t03">support a healthy weight</a>, <a href="http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jf9032602">promote eye health</a>, and <a href="http://eurheartj.oxfordjournals.org/content/28/2/219.short">improve heart health</a>. It is mainly grown and harvested in China and Japan. Green tea contains caffeine.</p> <p><strong>Preparation:</strong> Boil water and let it cool for 3 minutes before adding the tea. Steep green tea for 2&ndash;3 minutes.</p> <h2>Oolong</h2> <p>Like white and green tea, Oolong also comes from the traditional tea plant. Its distinct and strong flavor comes from pan firing the leaves during oxidation. Oolong tea has been shown to <a href="http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayAbstract?fromPage=online&amp;aid=7150320">lower blood sugar</a> and <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15331202">cholesterol while promoting heart health</a>. Oolong tea contains caffeine. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-can-do-to-reduce-your-risk-of-diabetes?ref=seealso">How to Reduce Your Risk of Diabetes</a>)</p> <p><strong>Preparation:</strong> Boil water and let it cool for 2 minutes before adding the tea. Steep oolong tea for 2&ndash;3 minutes.</p> <h2>Black</h2> <p>Black tea comes from a long fermentation process of the rolled leaves of the traditional tea plant. Then, like oolong tea, it is pan fired to give it a strong flavor. Black tea has been shown to <a href="http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/997.html">increase mental alterness and enhance blood flow</a>. Black tea contains caffeine.</p> <p><strong>Preparation:</strong> Boil the water and add the tea immediately. Let black tea steep 4&ndash;5 minutes so that it has time to develop its complex flavor and aroma.</p> <h2>Herbal</h2> <p>Herbal tea usually does not contain any tea leaves and instead consists of different combinations of dried or fresh herbs. Different herbs provide different benefits. For example, chamomile tea is known to <a href="http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jf0403282?prevSearch=chamomile%2Btea&amp;searchHistoryKey=">calm the nervous system and help induce sleep</a>, hibiscus <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19678781">lowers cholesterol</a>, ginger <a href="http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/ginger">reduces inflammation</a>, and peppermint <a href="http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/peppermint">reduces nausea and aids digestion</a>. Most herbal teas are caffeine free.</p> <p><strong>Preparation:</strong> Boil water and add the herbal tea immediately. Let all herbal teas steep 4&ndash;5 minutes.</p> <h2>Rooibos</h2> <p>Like herbal tea, Rooibos is not technically tea. It is made from the red leaves of the Rooibos plant native to South Africa. It has been shown to <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=rooibos%20blood%20pressure">reduce blood pressure</a>, and <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18981533">support healthy liver function</a>. It does not have any caffeine.</p> <p><strong>Preparation:</strong> Boil water and add Rooibos immediately. Steep it for 5&ndash;6 minutes.</p> <p>No matter which type of tea you choose and whether your drink it hot or iced, take time to savor the flavor and aroma, knowing that this beverage has nourished people all over the globe for centuries. Enjoy!</p> <p><em>What&#39;s your favorite way to brew tea?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/christa-avampato">Christa Avampato</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/drink-your-tea-types-health-benefits-and-how-to-brew-a-perfect-cup">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea">10 Reasons to Drink Tea</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-most-surprisingly-unhealthy-beverages">The 6 Most Surprisingly Unhealthy Beverages</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-caffeine-is-in-that">How Much Caffeine is in That?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stop-being-a-slave-to-starbucks-how-to-quit-caffeine">Stop Being a Slave to Starbucks - How to Quit Caffeine</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unexpected-delicious-drinks-you-can-make-at-home">Unexpected, Delicious Drinks You Can Make at Home</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink brewing tea herbal tea tea Thu, 06 Feb 2014 10:48:07 +0000 Christa Avampato 1122870 at http://www.wisebread.com Go, Tea, Go: The 10 Best Online Tea Merchants http://www.wisebread.com/go-tea-go-the-10-best-online-tea-merchants <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/go-tea-go-the-10-best-online-tea-merchants" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/tea-5368825-small.jpg" alt="tea" title="tea" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Calling all tea lovers &mdash; not only can you get your earl greys and oolongs online, but you can get virtually hundreds of other delicious teas and exciting tea accessories. These sites make it easy and fun to get your herbal fix. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea">Why You Should Drink Tea</a>)</p> <h2>Mighty Leaf</h2> <p>There are lots of ways to shop <a target="_blank" href="http://www.kqzyfj.com/click-2822544-10764654">Mighty Leaf</a>, but their bestsellers are a great place to start. This innovative tea company boasts deliciously popular blends including Chamomile Citrus, Ginger Twist, White Orchard, and Organic African Nectar &mdash; all starting around $9. Fun collections like the Chocolate Truffle Tea Collection and the Lotus &amp; Camelia Mini Loose Tea Collection &mdash; priced at around $30 &mdash; make gift ideas easy on you and your wallet. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-awesome-useful-gifts">25 Useful Gifts</a>)</p> <h2>Adagio Teas</h2> <p><a href="http://www.dpbolvw.net/click-2822544-6269009">Adagio Teas</a> has all the tea you want, plus cookies and biscuits. Its unique way of price per cup (a cup of Adagio tea's green tea will cost you around 15 cents) and customer ratings make Adagio a particularly smart way to shop for your favorite blends. Try some of their popular teas like the Chai Sampler, the Samurai Sampler, or the Ceylon Sonata, all for a mere 10 cents a cup.</p> <h2>Teavana</h2> <p><a href="http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=g519OIyP0is&amp;offerid=303268.3&amp;type=3&amp;subid=0">Tevana</a> proclaims itself &quot;the heaven of tea&quot; and truly offers shoppers a celestial selection. Get a can of Japanese Green Tea for $34.95, or try some Chai for $10. Teavana's most popular products include gift sets, teapots, and scrumptious specialty teas like Wonderberry Chocolate Truffle Oolong Tea. With store specials, a tea of the month club, and all the information you could ever want on tea, Teavana really is out of this world.</p> <h2>Rishi Tea</h2> <p><a href="http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=g519OIyP0is&amp;offerid=298252.6&amp;type=3&amp;subid=0">Rishi Tea</a> offers high quality organic and Fair Trade Certified loose leaf teas each season, direct from tea gardens the world over! Conveniently organized by tea, gifts, wholesale, teaware, and experience (a.k.a. their lively-written blog), Rishi will meet your needs with an ethical, organic product. Want a sachet of tea or a tin of loose leaves? Not only does Rishi Tea give you variety, but it'll also give you brewing options. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheapest-ways-to-get-your-caffeine-fix">Cheap Ways to Get Your Caffeine Fix</a>)</p> <h2>Capital Teas</h2> <p>With teas and teaware in spades, <a href="http://www.capitalteas.com/">Capital Teas</a> can supply you with any of your herbal tea needs. Popular teas include the simpler but upscale organic variety: Cream Earl Grey Black ($7), the Capital Breakfast Organic ($7) or the Mexican Mango Chill Mate ($8). Or stick with a variety of green teas, which sell for a reasonable $7 up to a decadent $5.</p> <h2>Tazo</h2> <p>With a sleek web interface and the promise of &quot;blends you've might not imagined,&quot; <a href="http://www.tazo.com/">Tazo</a> makes tea shopping exciting. Try their bestsellers, which come in convenient &quot;K Cup Packs&quot;: Awake English Breakfast, Zen, Calm, and Chai. In addition, Tazo has iced, brewed, and bottled options. The sleek packaging is almost as delightful as the product itself.</p> <h2>ESP Emporium</h2> <p><a href="http://www.espemporium.com/">ESP Emporium</a> has every tea and everything you may ever need for tea. Choose from a wide selection of tea, honey, dishware, rock sugars, and more at ESP Emporium. Popular items include the Ceylon Lavender/Jasmine Black Tea Blend for $5.95, the Passion/Grapefruit Rubioos tea blend for $5.95, or the Japan Kukicha Toasted Green tea for $11.95. Green tea prices vary from $6.95 to $40. Whatever style or grade of tea you want, Esp Emporium's got it.</p> <h2>Stash Tea</h2> <p><a href="http://www.stashtea.com/">Stash</a> has a fun site with fun search features (you can search teas by region). Their bestsellers include Pumpkin Spice Decaf Black Tea for $5.45, Spice Dragon Red Chai Herbal Tea for $2.50, and Meyer Lemon Herbal Tea for $2.50. Want to go green? Premium green teas can range from $2.50 to an indulgent $200, depending on your tea tastes.</p> <h2>Tealuxe</h2> <p>From &quot;ancient indulgence&quot; to modern sipability, <a href="http://www.tealuxe.com/">Tealuxe</a> has been creating tea products that reach new heights in quality and innovation. Get your green teas for a mere $6 a tin, with lots of coupons and sales promotions. With an innovative product comes an innovative site &mdash; searches, recipes, and easy ordering put the &quot;luxe&quot; in Tealuxe. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/from-sweet-tea-to-chai-delicious-homemade-tea-recipes">Delicious Homemade Tea Recipes</a>)</p> <h2>The Republic of Tea</h2> <p>With a tea blog and lots of delicious tea recipes and blend ideas, <a href="http://www.republicoftea.com/">The Republic of Tea</a> will make you feel like you're a mad, tea-drinking genius. The Republic of Tea has a strong library of information on tea, but an even stronger dedication to get you the best tea for your brewing needs. At R of T, they have hundreds of green tea products, averaging at about $20 a can. Drink up!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/rebecca-leib">Rebecca Leib</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/go-tea-go-the-10-best-online-tea-merchants">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/discount-designer-clothing-17-places-to-get-name-brands-for-less">Discount Designer Clothing: 17 Places to Get Name Brands for Less</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/hungry-20-popular-online-grocers-to-satisfy-every-craving">Hungry? 20 Popular Online Grocers to Satisfy Every Craving</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-aaa-batteries">The 5 Best AAA Batteries</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-fabric-softeners">The 5 Best Fabric Softeners</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/holiday-gifts-for-your-co-workers">20 Gift Ideas for Your Co-Workers</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping buying guide drinks online shopping product reviews tea Wed, 25 Sep 2013 11:24:13 +0000 Rebecca Leib 988431 at http://www.wisebread.com From Sweet Tea to Chai: Delicious Homemade Tea Recipes http://www.wisebread.com/from-sweet-tea-to-chai-delicious-homemade-tea-recipes <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/from-sweet-tea-to-chai-delicious-homemade-tea-recipes" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/3165217472_274dc1439c_z.jpg" alt="chai tea smoothie" title="chai tea smoothie" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>&quot;You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.&quot; &ndash; C.S. Lewis</p> <p>I have the drinking habits of an English pensioner. I pretty much require a cup of hot tea with every meal. I carry tea bags with me to insure that I never have to put up with bad restaurant coffee. The warm weather of Southern California has no impact on my tea drinking. I drink tea all day, every day.</p> <p>And why not? Tea is a remarkably versatile beverage. It never gets boring. As four-time British Prime Minister, William Ewart Gladstone, once remarked, &ldquo; If you are cold, tea will warm you. If you are too heated, it will cool you. If you are depressed, it will cheer you. If you are excited, it will calm you.&rdquo;</p> <p>Tea. It&rsquo;s an all-temperature problem solver. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea">10 Reasons to Drink&nbsp;Tea</a>)</p> <h3>1. Sweet Tea</h3> <p>&quot;American-style iced tea is the perfect drink for a hot, sunny day. It's never really caught on in the UK, probably because the last time we had a hot, sunny day was back in 1957.&quot; &ndash; Tom Holt</p> <p>Somewhere in East Texas there is an invisible line where Sweet Tea Territory begins. Once you cross the line, it is just assumed that when you order iced tea, what you really mean is <a href="http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/southern-sweet-tea-50400000112194/">sweet tea</a>. As Dolly Parton says in Steel Magnolias, &ldquo;Sweet tea is the house wine of the South.&rdquo;</p> <p>Iced tea is an American invention, and sweet tea was the status cocktail of the early 1900s as sugar, tea, and ice were all expensive imported food products.</p> <p>The oldest known recipe for sweet tea was published in 1879 in a cookbook by Marion Cabell Tyree titled &quot;House Keeping In Old Virginia.&quot; The original recipe, like most pre-WW2 sweet tea recipes, called for green tea:</p> <blockquote><p>After scalding the teapot, put into it one quart of boiling water and two teaspoonfuls green tea. If wanted for supper, do this at breakfast. At dinner time, strain, without stirring, through a tea strainer into a pitcher. Let it stand till tea time and pour into decanters, leaving the sediment in the bottom of the pitcher. Fill the goblets with ice, put two teaspoonfuls granulated sugar in each, and pour the tea over the ice and sugar. A squeeze of lemon will make this delicious and healthful, as it will correct the astringent tendency.</p> </blockquote> <p>(Due to anti-Japanese sentiment, Americans switched to using black tea from India during the War and have only recently reembraced green tea).</p> <h3>2. Arnold Palmer...and Other Golfer-Named Drinks</h3> <p>As much as I love sweet tea, my favorite summer tea beverage is the <a href="http://sports.espn.go.com/golf/columns/story?columnist=sobel_jason&amp;page=palmerblog">Arnold Palmer</a>, which is three parts iced tea to one part lemonade.</p> <p>Many people believe that an Arnold Palmer is an alcoholic beverage. These people are wrong. The drink that consists of lemonade, iced tea, and vodka is a called a <a href="http://www.drinknation.com/drink/john-daly">John Daly</a>.</p> <p>These drinks, and the Tiger Woods, (which is a blend of that horribly popular passion fruit tea that smells like bad cologne and lemonade), are all named after professional golfers. (The John Daly name is a nod to Daly&rsquo;s reputation as a drinker). Lemonade, iced tea, and Everclear is called a Happy Gilmore. A related, but non-golf cocktail is The Donovan, which was named after shipping magnate Andrew Donovan. The Donovan is a mix of lemonade and sweet tea vodka.</p> <h3>3. Thai Iced Tea</h3> <p>Another great summertime beverage is Thai iced tea. Made with evaporated milk, Thai iced tea can double as a desert. The unique flavor of Thai iced tea comes from the vanilla, cinnamon, tamarind, and star anise that are added to black tea. You can <a href="http://coffeetea.about.com/od/coldtearecipes/r/Thai-Iced-Tea-Recipe.htm">make Thai iced tea completely from scratch</a> using this basic recipe.</p> <p>However, since I live close to Thai Town in my city, I prefer to buy a premade, packaged mix of black tea and spices from my local Thai market, as it&rsquo;s easier and cheaper than buying the ingredients separately. You can also buy this mix online.</p> <h3>4. Chai</h3> <p>If you have a lot of random spices leftover from baking projects, chai is a delicious way to use them up at the end of the holiday season. My <a href="http://www.myromanapartment.com/planned-leftovers-house-chai-tea-recipe/">House Chai Recipe</a> starts with the cheapest black tea in my pantry, black pepper, and water, but I will throw in a mix of five or six other spices to vary the flavor.</p> <h3>5. Mulled Punch/Russian Tea</h3> <p>My mother is famous for her mulled punch, which is black tea mixed with orange, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-alternative-uses-for-lemons">lemon</a>, and pineapple juice, and spiced with cinnamon sticks and a tongue-numbing amount of whole cloves. This hot drink is often referred to as <a href="http://www.cooks.com/rec/view/0,1918,152162-232207,00.html">Russian tea</a>, even though it has nothing to do with that country).</p> <p>There are many <a href="http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Russian-Tea/Detail.aspx?prop24=RD_RelatedRecipes">recipes for instant Russian tea</a> floating around the internet. All of them feature a mix of instant ice tea mix, powdered lemonade, and Tang. (Russian tea. It&rsquo;s the drink of cosmonauts). Don&rsquo;t let the low-fi ingredients fool you. This tea mix tastes like nostalgia and makes a splendid, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-gifts-you-can-make-today">no-bake holiday gift</a>.</p> <h3>6. Apple Tea</h3> <p>A slightly fancier gift mix you can make at home is <a href="http://thegreenbacksgal.com/homemade-black-apple-tea-mix-recipe/">apple tea</a>. It&rsquo;s extra cute&nbsp;(and thrifty) packed into an apple-shaped Martinelli&rsquo;s Cider bottle.</p> <h3>7. Tea Smoothies</h3> <p>Tea can also be used as an energy boost to breakfast smoothie, like in this <a href="http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/cran-berry-green-tea-smoothie-10000001694234/">cranberry green tea smoothie</a>.</p> <h3>8. Tisanes</h3> <p>Teas that are not made from the camellia sinensis plant are not true teas, but tisanes. Tisanes are infusions that are made with flowers, fruit, herbs, or other plants. Many tisanes are based on old medicinal elixirs that are so yummy, people have forgotten their original purpose. Honey lemon tea (also known as hot lemonade) is one of my favorite wintertime beverages. An array of herbs and flowers can be added to <a href="http://www.food.com/recipe/feel-better-ginger-lemon-tea-236862">honey lemon tea</a> for additional flavors and healing properties, including mint, thyme, echinacea, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and lavender.</p> <p>Jamaica, one of the most popular Mexican aguas frescas, is a <a href="http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/agua_de_jamaica_hibiscus_tea/">cold tisane made from hibiscus flowers</a>. Many Mexican supermarkets carry dried jamaica flowers in bulk.&nbsp;Jamaica will forever ruin Kool-Aid for you. Fair warning.</p> <p>Also do not make the mistake I made the first time I saw this on a menu. It&rsquo;s pronounced the Spanish way, &ldquo;Hah-MIKE-ah,&rdquo; not like the island nation.</p> <p>Finally, wear old clothes when you make this tisane. In addition to being delicious, you can also use jamaica as a natural alternative to pink dye.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/from-sweet-tea-to-chai-delicious-homemade-tea-recipes">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea">10 Reasons to Drink Tea</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-green-tea-all-its-cracked-up-to-be-its-close">Is Green Tea All It&#039;s Cracked Up to Be? It&#039;s close.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-tasty-ways-to-use-chicken-stock">25 Tasty Ways to Use Chicken Stock</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-great-non-sandwich-work-lunches">25 Great Non-Sandwich Work Lunches</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-things-to-do-with-rotisserie-chicken">25 Things to Do With Rotisserie Chicken</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink affordable recipes green tea homemade gifts hot drinks tea Fri, 28 Dec 2012 10:48:42 +0000 Max Wong 955381 at http://www.wisebread.com Unexpected, Delicious Drinks You Can Make at Home http://www.wisebread.com/unexpected-delicious-drinks-you-can-make-at-home <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/unexpected-delicious-drinks-you-can-make-at-home" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/7841452250_6185ff9049_z.jpg" alt="mango lassi" title="mango lassi" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="250" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We frugal types appear to be a drink-obsessed people. We're constantly rambling on and on about lattes, cocktails, and soda, and how much one can save by avoiding these wallet-draining beverages &mdash; &quot;Avoid the coffee shop!&nbsp;Don't get a drink with dinner!&quot; we cry.</p> <p>But we all have our indulgences &mdash; drinks we enjoy that we only have when we're out, or that we think are simply too difficult to prepare on our own. The truth is, many of these beverages are inexpensive and easy (or at least fun) to make at home. Here are 10 tasty beverages to try. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/eight-natural-ways-to-make-water-more-flavorful">8 Natural Ways to Make Water More Flavorful</a>)</p> <h2>1. Boba Tea</h2> <p>Also known as bubble tea, this drink, originally from Taiwan, features tapioca pearls mixed with some combination of milk, juice, and/or iced tea. The Kitchn has a recipe for <a href="http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-boba-and-bubble-tea-98067">how to make boba tea</a>, and you can <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002V1NWF6/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B002V1NWF6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20">buy the tapioca pearls inexpensively</a> on Amazon or at Asian markets.</p> <h2>2. Mango Lassi</h2> <p>These sweet mango-yogurt smoothies are a staple at Indian restaurants. When I discovered in high school that I could make them at home, I went on an absolute tear of lassi drinking. Simply Recipes has a lovely <a href="http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/mango_lassi/">mango lassi recipe</a>.</p> <h2>3. Frappuccino</h2> <p>Over at Squakfox, Kerry has a <a href="http://www.squawkfox.com/2011/06/16/frappuccino-recipe/">recipe for making a Starbucks-style Frappuccino</a> &mdash; for a mere $.32 a serving!</p> <h2>4. Infused Liquor</h2> <p>With their house-infused blood-orange bourbon and lavender simple syrup, the recipes from fancy cocktail bars can seem more than a little intimidating. But most of these precious ingredients are actually quite easy to make. Check out my <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/for-delicious-cocktails-infuse-alcohol">guide to infusing alcohol</a>, About.com's <a href="http://cocktails.about.com/od/infusedsimplesyruprecipe/Infused_Simple_Syrup_Recipes.htm">infused simple syrup recipes</a>, or this Chow's <a href="http://www.chow.com/recipes/28431-maraschino-cherries">maraschino cherries recipe</a>.</p> <h2>5. Agua Fresca</h2> <p>My <a href="https://twitter.com/RickysFishTacos">favorite fish taco place</a> always has a big, delicious vat of agua fresca on the weekends &mdash; last time I went, it was cucumber-spinach. These sweet, refreshing Mexican drinks are super simple to make on your own. Try this basic <a href="http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/appetite-for-adventure/agua-fresca-recipe/index.html">watermelon or cantaloupe agua fresca</a>, a <a href="http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/cucumber_lime_mint_agua_fresca/">cucumber-lime-mint agua fresca</a>, or this <a href="http://mexicanfood.about.com/od/bebidasdrinks/r/aguatamarindo.htm">agua de tamarindo</a>.</p> <h2>6. Chai</h2> <p>I'm not talking about buying a box of that coffeehouse-mimicing stuff (as delicious as it may be), I'm talking about making your own chai tea from scratch. The Kitchn has a nice <a href="http://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-homemade-chai-47061">chai recipe</a>.</p> <h2>7. Soda</h2> <p>There are several ways to make soda or soda-like drinks, ranging from the fast and healthy (when I was a kid, my mom often served &quot;healthy soda&quot; &mdash; a 50/50 mix of orange juice and sparkling water), to concoctions that require fermenting yeast (and, yeah, a heaping helping of sugar). Check out my article on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-your-own-soda">making your own soda</a> for all the details.</p> <h2>8. Espresso</h2> <p>OK, I'm not suggesting that you get a home espresso machine (although if you drink a lot of it, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-1500-on-coffee">that can be a frugal choice</a>). But a <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0000CF3Q6/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B0000CF3Q6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20">stovetop espresso maker</a> might be just what you need. The coffee isn't <em>exactly</em> the same as coffee shop espresso, but this is an easy and inexpensive way to make a strong brew.</p> <h2>9. Thai Iced Tea and Coffee</h2> <p>Caffeinated, sweet, and oh-so-delicious, I love getting one of these drinks when I go out for Thai food. You can, however, totally make 'em at home. Try this recipe for <a href="http://thaifood.about.com/od/thaidesserts/r/thaiicedcoffee.htm">easy Thai iced coffee</a> or <a href="http://www.thaitable.com/thai/recipe/thai-tea">Thai tea</a>.</p> <h2>10. Horchata</h2> <p>Thinking about this tasty, rice-based Mexican beverage always gets that darn <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bkUQ-OBazbc">Vampire Weekend song</a> stuck in my head. I don't even know the whole song, just the phrase &quot;in December, drinking horchata&quot; because my friend used to sing it over and over. Anyway, deity of all things sweet David Lebovitz has a lovely <a href="http://www.davidlebovitz.com/2011/06/horchata-recipe-mexican-rice-drink/">horchata recipe</a>.</p> <p><em>What are your favorite drinks to make at home?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/meg-favreau">Meg Favreau</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unexpected-delicious-drinks-you-can-make-at-home">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-caffeine-is-in-that">How Much Caffeine is in That?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-most-surprisingly-unhealthy-beverages">The 6 Most Surprisingly Unhealthy Beverages</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stop-being-a-slave-to-starbucks-how-to-quit-caffeine">Stop Being a Slave to Starbucks - How to Quit Caffeine</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-surprising-benefits-of-caffeine">10 Surprising Benefits of: Caffeine</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/22-reasons-to-stop-drinking-soda">22 Reasons to Stop Drinking Soda</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink cheap drinks coffee drink recipes soda tea Thu, 13 Sep 2012 10:36:42 +0000 Meg Favreau 954442 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Reasons to Drink Tea http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-reasons-to-drink-tea" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/teapot.jpg" alt="Teapot and mug of tea" title="Teapot and mug of tea" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="166" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I start most mornings with a cup of coffee, but at heart, I am a tea-drinking gal. Green, black, herbal &mdash; I love it all, and I usually drink a couple mugs of the stuff a day. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-green-tea-all-its-cracked-up-to-be-its-close">Is Green Tea All It's Cracked Up to Be? It's Close.</a>)</p> <p>I mostly like tea just because it's delicious, but here are a bunch of other great reasons to consume it:</p> <h3>1. To Wake Up</h3> <p>Depending on the kind of tea you drink, an 8 oz. cup of tea can have up to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-caffeine-is-in-that">120 mg of caffeine</a>. Black tea has the most caffeine, followed by green.</p> <h3>2. To Calm Down</h3> <p>Not only can chamomile tea help you fall asleep, but researchers at the University of Pennsylvania discovered that it can also <a href="http://nccam.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/040310.htm">help relieve anxiety</a>.</p> <h3>3. To Soothe Your Stomach</h3> <p>Teas made from peppermint and ginger are both known for their stomach-calming properties. And there's no need to pay for tea bags here &mdash; dried peppermint (picked from your garden, if you have it, and hung to dry inside) or fresh chopped ginger placed in a tea ball or reusable tea bag work just as well. (Just be careful if you're prone to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-affordable-solutions-for-acid-reflux-disease">acid reflux</a>; mint can actually aggravate the condition.)</p> <h3>4. To Lower Your Blood Sugar</h3> <p>As Andrea reports in her piece about <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-cheap-ways-to-lower-your-blood-sugar">inexpensive ways to lower blood sugar</a>, green, black, and white tea can all help bring blood sugar down. She also notes that cinnamon can as well, which is often used along with black tea as an ingredient in chai.</p> <h3>5. To Help Prevent Heart Disease and Cancer</h3> <p>Studies have show that green tea&nbsp;&mdash; widely held as the reigning champion of teas when it comes to health benefits &mdash; might help prevent both cancer and heart disease thanks to the tea's awesome antioxidants, which are called catechins.</p> <h3>6. To Get Warm (or Cool Down)</h3> <p>Drinking a big mug of tea &mdash; or any other hot drink, really&nbsp;&mdash; will raise your body temperature. Put it on ice, and it makes a great summertime thirst quencher.</p> <h3>7. To Keep a Bright Smile</h3> <p>Researchers have found that drinking green tea can reduce your risk of <a href="http://www.healthytheory.com/green-tea-is-good-for-your-smile">periodontal disease</a>. Yes, it's true that tea can also stain your teeth, but if you stick to lighter teas like green, that's less likely to happen.</p> <h3>8. To Get Flavor Without Calories</h3> <p>From tropical fruits to wintry spices, from delicate jasmine to the classic black, green, white, and oolong, tea comes in a variety of flavors and has pretty much no calories to speak of. (Well, until you start adding milk and sugar. I'm not going to tell you that your Starbucks chai latte is calorie-free, buddy &mdash; and don't get me started on those big ol' cans of Arizona.)</p> <h3>9. To Wean Yourself Off of Coffee</h3> <p>If you want to kick the coffee habit but aren't looking forward to the ensuing withdrawal headaches and cranky, yawning mornings, switch your mug of java for a mug of tea (green, ideally, since it has less caffeine than black) for a while to step yourself down slowly.</p> <h3>10.&nbsp;To Socialize</h3> <p>Whether you plan a fancy afternoon tea party (with potluck finger foods, perhaps?) or just meet a friend for a cup of the steeped stuff at a coffee shop (nobody calls them tea shops, do they?), drinking tea is a great way to catch up with friends.</p> <p><em>Why do you drink tea? Do you know of any awesome benefits I missed? Share your thoughts in the comments.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/meg-favreau">Meg Favreau</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-caffeine-is-in-that">How Much Caffeine is in That?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-surprising-benefits-of-caffeine">10 Surprising Benefits of: Caffeine</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-green-tea-all-its-cracked-up-to-be-its-close">Is Green Tea All It&#039;s Cracked Up to Be? It&#039;s close.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stop-being-a-slave-to-starbucks-how-to-quit-caffeine">Stop Being a Slave to Starbucks - How to Quit Caffeine</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/22-reasons-to-stop-drinking-soda">22 Reasons to Stop Drinking Soda</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Health and Beauty beverages caffeine green tea tea Mon, 21 Feb 2011 12:36:12 +0000 Meg Favreau 491511 at http://www.wisebread.com How Much Caffeine is in That? http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-caffeine-is-in-that <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-much-caffeine-is-in-that" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/4394399210_fc71597d00_z.jpg" alt="Kenyan coffee" title="Kenyan coffee" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="168" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whether you're trying to avoid your own caffeine intake due to <a title="4 Ways Breast-Feeding Saves Money" href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-breast-feeding-saves-money">breastfeeding</a>, pregnancy, or health reasons, or trying to keep your kids from ingesting more than their fair share, here's a list of a few everyday items and their caffeine content. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-nutrients-you-need-more-of" title="7 Nutrients You Need More Of">7 Nutrients You Need More Of</a>)</p> <h2>Coffee</h2> <p>Coffee varies in caffeine content drastically, even in the same coffeehouse, on the same day. Everything from roast styles to brewing methods affect the amount of caffeine you get. The lighter the roast, the more caffeine it has.</p> <ul> <li>Starbucks (Grande) iced coffee, 16 oz: <strong>190 mg</strong>. <em>This is double-brewed. Without the ice it contains <strong>380mg</strong>.</em></li> <li>Starbucks brewed coffee, 16 oz: <strong>330 mg</strong>. <em>Brewed coffee has <strong>50% more</strong> caffeine on average than instant coffee.</em></li> <li>Instant coffee, 16 oz: <strong>60-345mg</strong></li> <li>Starbucks latte, 16 oz: <strong>150mg</strong></li> <li>Starbucks espresso, 1 oz (1 shot): <strong>58-75mg</strong></li> </ul> <h2>Tea</h2> <p>The longer a tea is steeped, the higher the caffeine content. If after the first steep, you add more hot water to the tea or tea bag, the tea becomes almost entirely decaffeinated.</p> <ul> <li>Starbucks Tazo chai tea latte, 16 oz: <strong>100 mg</strong></li> <li>Regular black tea, 8 oz: <strong>40-120 mg</strong></li> <li>Stash green tea, 18 oz: <strong>78 mg</strong></li> <li>Snapple iced tea, 16 oz: <strong>18 mg</strong></li> <li>12 oz Nestea: <strong>17 mg</strong></li> <li>Decaffeinated black tea, 8 oz: <strong>2 mg</strong></li> </ul> <h2>Soft Drinks</h2> <p><em>All drinks are 12 oz servings</em></p> <ul> <li>Mountain Dew: <strong>54 mg</strong></li> <li>Mello Yello: <strong>53 mg</strong></li> <li>Diet Coke: <strong>47 mg</strong></li> <li>Tab: <strong>47 mg</strong></li> <li>Dr Pepper: <strong>42-44 mg</strong></li> <li>Sunkist Orange: <strong>42 mg</strong></li> <li>Pepsi: <strong>36-38 mg</strong></li> <li>Coke: <strong>35 mg</strong></li> <li>A&amp;W Cream Soda: <strong>29 mg</strong></li> <li>Barq's Root Beer: 2<strong>3 mg</strong></li> <li>A&amp;W Root Beer: <strong>0 mg</strong></li> <li>7-Up: <strong>0 mg</strong></li> <li>Sprite: <strong>0 mg</strong></li> <li>Mug Root Beer: <strong>0 mg</strong></li> <li>Fanta: <strong>0 mg</strong></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> <h2>Energy Drinks</h2> <ul> <li>No Name (formerly known as Cocaine), 8.4 oz: <strong>280 mg</strong></li> <li>Monster Energy, 16 oz: <strong>160 mg</strong></li> <li>Full Throttle, 16 oz:&nbsp;<strong>144 mg</strong></li> <li>Enviga, 12 oz: <strong>100 mg</strong></li> <li>No Fear, 8 oz: <strong>83 mg</strong></li> <li>Rockstar, 8 oz: <strong>80 mg</strong></li> <li>Red Bull, 8.3 oz: <strong>76 mg</strong></li> <li>AMP, 8.4 oz: <strong>74 mg</strong></li> </ul> <h2>Food</h2> <ul> <li>Hershey's Special Dark Chocolate, 1.45 oz: <strong>31 mg</strong></li> <li>Hershey's Milk Chocolate Bar, 1.55 oz: <strong>9mg</strong></li> <li>Ben and Jerry's Coffee Heath Bar Crunch, 8 oz: <strong>84 mg</strong></li> <li>Haagen-Daz Coffee Ice Cream, 8 oz: <strong>58 mg</strong></li> <li>Starbucks Coffee Ice Cream, 8 oz: <strong>50-60 mg</strong></li> </ul> <h2>Medications</h2> <ul> <li>No Doz, 1 Tablet: <strong>200 mg</strong></li> <li>Excedrin Extra Strength, 2 tablets: <strong>130 mg</strong></li> <li>Anacin Maximum Strength, 2 tablets: <strong>64 mg</strong></li> <li>Midol Maximum Strength: <strong>60 mg</strong></li> </ul> <p>Things get a little tricky when it comes to what has caffeine and what doesn't. I knew Barq's Root Beer had caffeine, but didn't know that A&amp;W Cream Soda has it as well. And just to confuse matters more, A&amp;W Regular Root Beer is caffeine free. Also surprising was the caffeine content in Sunkist Orange. This list will help you keep the caffeine out of little hands (because they absolutely do not need it), and keep the buzz where it belongs &mdash; in your hectic, parental world.</p> <p>This list was compiled with help from the Mayo Clinic article on <a href="http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/caffeine/AN01211">caffeine content.</a></p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>This is a post from our sister blog, <a href="http://parentingsquad.com">Parenting Squad</a>. Visit Parenting Squad for more great posts:</p> <ul> <li><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/helping-kids-writing">7 Simple Tips To Encourage Writing In Young Children</a></li> <li><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/forward-facing-strollers-language-delay">Do Forward-Facing Strollers Delay Language?</a></li> <li><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/effective-treatment-for-peanut-allergies-in-children">Effective Treatment For Peanut Allergies In Children</a></li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sonja-stewart">Sonja Stewart</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-caffeine-is-in-that">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea">10 Reasons to Drink Tea</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-most-surprisingly-unhealthy-beverages">The 6 Most Surprisingly Unhealthy Beverages</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unexpected-delicious-drinks-you-can-make-at-home">Unexpected, Delicious Drinks You Can Make at Home</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-surprising-benefits-of-caffeine">10 Surprising Benefits of: Caffeine</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stop-being-a-slave-to-starbucks-how-to-quit-caffeine">Stop Being a Slave to Starbucks - How to Quit Caffeine</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink beverages caffeine coffee medicine soda tea Thu, 04 Mar 2010 18:00:03 +0000 Sonja Stewart 5617 at http://www.wisebread.com How to create a speculative bubble and profit http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-create-a-speculative-bubble-and-profit <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-create-a-speculative-bubble-and-profit" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/bubble.jpg" alt="Bubble" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="222" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Recently I read an enlightening <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/17/world/asia/17tea.html ">story in the New York Times about the Pu'er tea bubble in Yunan, China</a>.&nbsp; The burgundy fermented teas fetched prices of $150 a pound at the peak, but now sells for less than a tenth of those prices.&nbsp; I have actually been to one of those tea houses in Yunan, and I have also seen the rise and burst of the housing bubble in America.&nbsp; These experiences make me think that there is a certain formula to creating a speculative bubble out of anything, and here is what I have gathered.<br /> <strong><br /> 1. Create a magical backstory for your product&nbsp;</strong> - In the tea houses of Yunan they told us the story of the accidental invention of Pu'er, and how it cures many diseases and also aids dieting.&nbsp; In America homeownership is touted as &quot;The American Dream&quot;.&nbsp; Both of these products were given an emotional and almost mystical backstory that made people covet them.&nbsp; The magical backstory should make people believe that they will be improved in some manner by your product, and that owning your product is an ideal to strive for.</p> <p><strong>2. Market your product as an investment&nbsp; </strong>-&nbsp; After people start to buy your products, it is important to make people believe your product is a great investment. In the tea houses they told us that they buy antique teas back as if they were gold, and paid more for older teas. Thus they have a saying that Pu'er gets more valuable as it ages.&nbsp; It sounded a bit incredulous, but it was also attractive.&nbsp; In America, I have no idea how many times I have heard that a home is the best investment you can make.&nbsp; Once money is involved, the product also appeals to greed.</p> <p><strong>3. Pump and dump </strong>- If you have a bit of capital, a great way to inflate the bubble is by buying up a lot of the product being promoted and then selling it to new people caught up in the fervor.&nbsp; In Yunan wholesalers bought teas back at a markup of nearly 30% a year and then sold it again to new &quot;investors&quot;.&nbsp; In America there was a frenzy of flipping homes by individuals and large corporations that bought up land.&nbsp; The same happened during the dot com bubble, when investors that bought into the high technology religion snapped up every related stock they could find and quickly drove up prices.&nbsp; The key is to dump all the inventory before the demand dries up, and that is the hardest thing to do.</p> <p>A classic book about speculative bubbles is <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/9562915700?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=stuffies-20&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=9562915700">Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds</a><img height="1" width="1" border="0" style="border: medium none ! important; margin: 0px ! important;" alt="" src="http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=stuffies-20&amp;l=as2&amp;o=1&amp;a=9562915700" /> written&nbsp; by Charles Mackay&nbsp; in 1841. It details the dangers of mob mentality in investing and other aspects of life. Indeed, it is very difficult for one person to blow up a gigantic speculative bubble.&nbsp; It took entire industries and various government efforts to inflate the asset bubbles we have seen in recent years.&nbsp; I have no doubt that we will see more asset bubbles in the future, as they are testaments to human nature.&nbsp; The key to surviving them and maybe make a profit is to keep your emotions in check, and do not be so greedy that you are left holding the bag.&nbsp; Of course, this is all easier said than done.&nbsp; <br /> &nbsp;</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/xin-lu">Xin Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-create-a-speculative-bubble-and-profit">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-is-keeping-you-from-a-life-of-financial-independence">What is keeping you from a life of financial independence?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-does-the-fannie-mae-and-freddie-mac-bailout-affect-you">How does the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac bailout affect you?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-not-buy-something-just-because-you-can-afford-it">Do not buy something just because you can afford it</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/welcome-to-container-city-how-shipping-containers-are-recycled-into-green-dwellings">Welcome to Container City - How Shipping Containers Are Recycled into Green Dwellings</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/seller-funded-down-payment-assistance-charities-scammers-or-saints">Seller Funded Down Payment Assistance Charities - Scammers or Saints?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Food and Drink Investment Lifestyle Real Estate and Housing bubble housing news tea Mon, 19 Jan 2009 21:39:43 +0000 Xin Lu 2758 at http://www.wisebread.com Cheap and Simple Sunburn Remedies That Really Work http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-and-simple-sunburn-remedies-that-really-work <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/cheap-and-simple-sunburn-remedies-that-really-work" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/charlie brown sunburned.jpg" alt="charlie brown sunburn" title="charlie brown sunburn" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Oops, I did it again. Thinking that just one unprotected hour in the sun would be alright, I fried my fair Danish skin. I really know better, but it can happen to the best of us. Here are some very useful home concoctions and common sense tips for easing the pain and feeling better quick. (See also: <a title="Sunscreen Savings: How to Spend 50 Percent Less Without Even Trying" href="http://www.wisebread.com/sunscreen-savings-how-to-spend-50-percent-less-without-even-trying">Sunscreen Savings: How to Spend 50 Percent Less Without Even Trying</a>)</p> <p>A sunburn isn't just a painful nuisance &mdash; it can wreak havoc on <a title="5 Best Skin Care Tips for People on a Budget" href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-skin-care-tips-for-people-on-a-budget">healthy skin</a> and put you at risk for getting skin cancer later in life. (In fact, two or more severe sunburns before age 18 greatly increase the chances, as skin has a sort of a <a title="Preventing Skin Cancer Begins at Birth" href="http://www.mpip.org/prevention/06_06_00birth.html">&quot;memory&quot; of burns and tans year after year</a>. While the best treatment is prevention with an effective sunblock, sunscreen, or a proper physical barrier from the sun, things can sometimes go wrong.</p> <p>So what do you do when you return home from an outing and you resemble a well-done lobster bake? Try one of these time-tested home remedies&hellip;and give yourself a chance to heal.</p> <h2>Vinegar</h2> <p>Paul Michael was the first to introduce me to this cure, in his <a title="254 Uses for Vinegar" href="http://www.wisebread.com/254-uses-for-vinegar-and-counting">254 Uses for Vinegar</a> piece. Apply vinegar (or a half-water, half-vinegar solution) with a spray bottle or dab on with a towel. Then cover the area with a tea towel for overnight relief. While a bit stinky, it does wonders to &quot;cool&quot; down the burn.</p> <h2>Aspirin</h2> <p>Recommended for adult sunburn victims with a known tolerance to aspirin, this is the treatment I used most recently. Simply crush a couple of aspirin in a bowl or cup with the back of a spoon. By adding a small amount of water, you can create a &quot;paste&quot; which can be applied directly to the burn. (Be sure to crush the aspirin very well.)</p> <p>A variation on this is to add it to Maalox (the tummy stuff) instead of water and brush it on with a basting brush or a cotton ball. Since aspirin alone can cause burns, be certain you don't have an intolerance to it being applied topically, and don't let it sit on your skin any longer than overnight.</p> <p>If in doubt, simply take the aspirin orally as recommended. (Be aware of your tolerance to aspirin, first.)</p> <h2>Tea</h2> <p>Whip up a batch of tea (either from boiled tea bags or sun tea), and cool it in the fridge along with some ice. Spray directly on burned skin or dab with a soft rag. It instantly cools and relieves the burn, so keep applying for best results!</p> <h2>Milk</h2> <p>Apply gauze dipped in lukewarm milk to the burned area. Leave on for minimum of 20 minutes, and rinse the area when it starts to get a bit funky-smelling (or no more than an hour or so later).</p> <h2>Aloe Vera</h2> <p>Growing up, we always had an aloe plant in the home for minor burns and afflictions. Break off a piece of the plant and squeeze it so that some of the goo (gel) drips out the end. You can rub this directly into the sunburn for the same kind of soothing relief you can get from those &quot;after-burn&quot; gels and over-the-counter commercial products (only better). When the gel starts to dry, the area may become stiff, so keep applying or cleanse the area and apply with some new gel.</p> <p>I'm no doctor, but also no stranger to sunburns. If prevention has failed, and you experience a nasty burn, stay home, stay hydrated, and stay rested. Using simple techniques to relieve pain and maintain the integrity of your skin, it is possible to get back to your daily routine the next day. If you experience any of the following symptoms, see a doctor for proper care:</p> <ul> <li>Dizziness</li> <li>Vomiting</li> <li>Fever/Chills</li> <li>Intense Fatigue</li> </ul> <p>You will also want to be aware that some prescription medications increase your sensitivity to sunlight and put you at added risk of getting burnt. These include certain:</p> <ul> <li>Diuretics</li> <li>Antibiotics</li> <li>Tranquilizers</li> <li>Birth Control Pills</li> <li>Diabetes Medications</li> </ul> <p>Medicated soaps, perfumes, and Retin-A can also make you susceptible to overexposure.</p> <p>Take it easy year-round to prevent sunburns and other dangerous skin conditions. A regular visit to your dermatologist can keep skin concerns under control and decrease your chances of cancer-related illness or death. (For more information, see <a title="Love Your Skin With Free Health Screenings!" href="http://www.wisebread.com/love-your-skin-with-free-health-screenings">how to get a free skin cancer screening</a> in your area.)</p> <p><em>(Information contained in this article is not intended to be a substitute for advice and treatment from a licensed physician &mdash; use at your own risk.)</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/linsey-knerl">Linsey Knerl</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheap-and-simple-sunburn-remedies-that-really-work">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-wonderful-uses-for-witch-hazel">15 Wonderful Uses for Witch Hazel</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/254-uses-for-vinegar-and-counting">254 Uses for Vinegar. And Counting.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-sell-your-hair-for-cash">How to Sell Your Hair for Cash</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-cheap-and-easy-homemade-mosquito-repellents">4 Cheap and Easy Homemade Mosquito Repellents</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-foods-scientifically-proven-to-increase-your-lifespan">6 Foods Scientifically Proven to Increase Your Lifespan</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips Health and Beauty remedies summer sunburn tea Vinegar Mon, 19 May 2008 13:22:43 +0000 Linsey Knerl 2101 at http://www.wisebread.com Stop Being a Slave to Starbucks - How to Quit Caffeine http://www.wisebread.com/stop-being-a-slave-to-starbucks-how-to-quit-caffeine <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/stop-being-a-slave-to-starbucks-how-to-quit-caffeine" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/4262526870_35a43d2b82_z.jpg" alt="starbucks cup" title="starbucks cup" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I finally quit drinking coffee three weeks ago.</p> <p>It's not something that I particularly wanted to do, but I did it. And now that I have, I'm actually really happy about it. I feel liberated, I feel healthier, and I have already saved myself quite a nice sum of cash &mdash; cash that used to go towards black gold of the Starbucks variety.</p> <p>Now, I'm not one to advocate for a boycott of caffeine or anything. But, if you're already thinking about quitting caffeine, here are some reasons, and methods, for doing so.</p> <h2>Let's get something straight</h2> <p>OK, let me first address some of the accusations that will doubtlessly be thrown at this post:</p> <ol> <li>No, I don't think that there is anything WRONG with drinking caffeinated beverages.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>No, I do not hate Starbucks. I actually quite like Starbucks. I know that the title of this article sounds like I want Starbucks to go down in flames, but that's not the case at all. I still occasionally go to Starbucks, and I like their breakfast quiche.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Yes, I realize that caffeine has been shown to have <a href="http://men.webmd.com/features/coffee-new-health-food">some positive health benefits</a>.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>And no, I'm not advising anyone to quit. I'm just offering advice for people who already know that they don't want to consume caffeine anymore.</li> </ol> <p>We good? OK.</p> <h2>Why would anyone want to quit?</h2> <p>Well, there are a number of reasons, but everyone has a different one. Some people freak out when their teeth start to stain. Some people want to save money, others have health reasons. For me, it was sort of a combination of all of these. I have stomach problems, and caffeine only exacerbates them. One cup of coffee in the morning felt like I was drinking a cup of lemon juice. The burning pain was simply too much to deal with.</p> <p>Also, drinking coffee just got to be a pain in the butt. Traveling somewhere where good coffee is scarce was a hazard (small towns in Nevada, especially). Oddly enough, I have never dated anyone who drinks coffee, so those cute couples that stumble down to Cafe Vita on a weekend in their PJs to share foamy lattes over the Sunday Times? That was never me. Solitary trips to Starbucks aren't nearly as fun as the ones you can take with a fellow caffeine addict.</p> <p>But most of all, I really hated being a slave to caffeine. I hated the fact that I <em>had to</em> consume at least a cup of coffee within an hour of waking up to stave off a splitting headache. I have a lot to do in the morning &mdash; dogs to feed and walk, gear to prepare &mdash; it takes me a good hour and a half from bed to door, and that's <em>without</em> much fussing about appearance. A trip to Starbucks made my morning routine that much longer.</p> <p>Sure, I could brew a pot of coffee, and I often would, but then I'd just drink that much more.</p> <p>For me, the decision was clear, but it took me a long time to make it, because DAMN, I really love coffee.</p> <p>Oh, I like other caffeinated beverages as well &mdash; Diet Coke is SO good with Indian food. But I could give those up fairly easily, and besides, they don't offer the energy and mental clarity that coffee does. Not even Red Bull has <a href="http://wilstar.com/caffeine.htm">as much caffeine as a cup of drip coffee</a>. Everyone knows that <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caffeine">caffeine is a drug</a>, but its effect is so useful, and its side effects so mild that we don't really care. A little nervousness here, some heartburn there, maybe some insomnia &mdash; but the sheer energizing potential of a cup of joe makes it seem worth any little needling problems.</p> <p>Usually. But for me, it simply got too bad. Stomach pain was a major factor, but there were others as well. In any case, once I realized that I had very little choice other than to quit, quitting was fairly easy.</p> <h2>How to quit</h2> <p>I have quit drinking coffee (and other caffeinated beverages) twice, but the first time didn't last. Interestingly enough, the first time I quit, I did it <a href="http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=43492">gradually</a>, by simply drinking a little less coffee every day until I was just drinking decaf, and then slowly reducing the amount of decaf that I drank. I managed to stay away from caffeine for a few weeks, but eventually fell off the wagon, as it were.</p> <p>This most recent time, I quit cold turkey. Just plain stopped. I let myself have a cup of decaf if I was feeling like I might crack and go back to swilling espresso, but mostly I just soldiered through the withdrawal symptoms.</p> <p>Here are some tips for quitting:</p> <h3>Start on a Friday</h3> <p>It takes anywhere from 4-11 days to be free from caffeine cravings. If you start on a Friday, by the next Monday, you'll be at least 1/3 of the way through.</p> <h3>Drink plenty of water</h3> <p>The faster you cleanse your body of caffeine, the better off you will be. Drinking clean water will purify your blood, help cleanse your liver, and make your body function better. If you want, you can drink some detox tea, but you don't have to. It'll just clean you out a bit faster.</p> <h3>Get the extra sleep that you want and need</h3> <p>Plan ahead and realize that you'll probably need 2-4 more hours of sleep per day while you adjust to a caffeine-free life. You can take it in the form of naps, or just get to bed earlier. But if you don't set aside this time, you will have a very difficult time quitting &mdash; you'll be dragging along at 1 p.m. and just NEED a cup of coffee. I know it's difficult, especially with a busy schedule, to find a way to sleep more, but it's an important step.</p> <h3>Get those painkillers ready</h3> <p>Have a headache from withdrawal? Take some ibuprofen or whatever it is that you normally take to get rid of the pain. An ice pack on the forehead or the back of your head can help, too.</p> <h3>Don't be afraid to have some decaf</h3> <p>Yes, there is still caffeine in decaf, but if you need your fix, you might be able to stave off a complete relapse by having a decaf version of your favorite caffeine source.</p> <h3>Discover another energy source</h3> <p>When I'm groggy, I take a quick walk around the block while listening to The Ramones. By the time I'm back at my desk, I'm refreshed and perky. Well, as perky as I get, anyway. An apple is a great replacement for my afternoon coffee.</p> <p>LifeHacker <a href="http://lifehacker.com/software/caffeine/ask-lifehacker-readers-kicking-the-caffeine-habit-166789.php">readers offer some good tips</a> for quitting, too.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-karim">Andrea Karim</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stop-being-a-slave-to-starbucks-how-to-quit-caffeine">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-surprising-benefits-of-caffeine">10 Surprising Benefits of: Caffeine</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea">10 Reasons to Drink Tea</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-save-money-on-your-cup-of-coffee">9 Ways to Save Money on Your Cup of Coffee</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-caffeine-is-in-that">How Much Caffeine is in That?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unexpected-delicious-drinks-you-can-make-at-home">Unexpected, Delicious Drinks You Can Make at Home</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Health and Beauty caffeine coffee decaf headache Starbucks tea Tully's Mon, 04 Jun 2007 21:42:00 +0000 Andrea Karim 701 at http://www.wisebread.com Is Green Tea All It's Cracked Up to Be? It's close. http://www.wisebread.com/is-green-tea-all-its-cracked-up-to-be-its-close <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/wisebread_imce/green_tea.jpg" alt="http://www.flickr.com/photos/kankan/" title="Green tea by Kanko" width="250" height="188" /></p> <p>I&#39;ve been enjoying the snarky articles at Slate.com recently focusing on the commoditization of Eastern traditions, such as <a href="http://www.slate.com/id/2162283/">yoga</a>. As someone who purchases but never uses yoga clothing, mats, and accessories, I can truly appreciate the hypocrisy in the American tendency to turn something that is supposed to be purifying and healthy into something that is really a money-making scheme.</p> <p>However, I have to take issue with Jacob Weisberg&#39;s recent article that more or less tries to <a href="http://www.slate.com/id/2163503/nav/tap1/">dismiss the trend that is green tea</a>, mostly by linking to the myriad of products that use green tea as an ingredient. I&#39;m bothered by a few issues that he raises, mostly because, well, I really freaking love green tea.</p> <p>Now, I long ago discarded the notion that the East has much to teach us about metaphysical stuff. Don&#39;t get me wrong - I&#39;m an Asiaphile. But it&#39;s not because I find any deep and inherent wisdom in the cultures that make up &quot;the Orient&quot;. I like Asia because the land is stunning, the languages are fascinating, the history is long, and the men are handsome.</p> <p>That said, Easterners are as messed-up as as Westerners. Sure, there are some lovely traditions to be had all across Asia, both found in extinct rituals and current practices. But there are lovely traditions to be found in Portugal, too. Only we don&#39;t categorize the Portugese as particularly deep, whereas I think that Asians get put on a spiritual pedestal that isn&#39;t fair to anyone.</p> <p>Commercialism and greed are rampant everywhere in the world, and I don&#39;t think that someone who grew up in, say, Vietnam, has any more to teach the world than someone who grew up in Alabama. So my defense of tea-drinking isn&#39;t stemming from any illusion that the West is merely a commercial shell of a place with no soul, and Asia is the land of enlightenment or anything.</p> <p>There&#39;s no Ganesh on my bookshelf at home, get it?</p> <p>OK? Good. Now that that is out of the way. Green tea.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>It&#39;s an acquired taste...</strong></p> <p>Like coffee, beer, and avocados, your first impression of green tea might have been something like, &quot;Oh. That&#39;s, uh. Hm. Ick.&quot; When I first tasted green tea at the age of 12, I can&#39;t say that I was delighted with it, either. Our exchange student, who hailed from Tokyo, had brought packets of <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matcha">matcha</a> with her for us to sample. To me, it was like drinking a ground-up version of the hay that we fed the horses in 4-H. Only bitter.</p> <p>It wasn&#39;t until I traveled to Japan for the first time that I started to really appreciate green tea, if not the long ceremonies surrounding it that caused me to experience some severe Charlie horses (I do appreciate the meditation and skill and patience involved in tea ceremonies, I simply can&#39;t sit on my knees for the length of one). After that trip, I developed a real love for green tea, of which there are many kinds. Also, I decided that green tea flavoring was the best. thing. ever.</p> <p>So, my feathers get ruffled when I read someone who wants to disparage green tea for no good reason, other than the fact that they are sick of hearing about it, and kind of want to make fun of a few products and their respective marketing campaigns. </p> <p>If Slate.com&#39;s Jacob Weisberg had written an article saying &quot;I&#39;m really sick of hearing about green tea&quot;, I&#39;d be fine, because that&#39;s honest. But alas, that was not his tactic. I understand the need to snark about some things, but the green tea attack feels forced and pointless. Also, there are some criticisms of the green tea fad that I just don&#39;t find legitimate.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Snark: Eastern Tradition Hijacked by the West</strong></p> <p class="blockquote">In the United States, &quot;Eastern&quot; tends to blur together Hinduism, Buddhism, and hucksterism. It inevitably involves something to buy and usually something to eat as well. Only this harmonic-entrepreneurial convergence can explain the invention of <a href="http://www.serendipitychocolates.com/detail_pages/greentea_truffle.htm" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">New Zen Green Tea Truffles</font></a> and <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Bissingers-Green-Gummy-Pandas-Three/dp/B000BNLF3W" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">Green Tea Gummy Pandas</font></a>, snacks that transform a foggy idea of virtue into morsels of vice. </p> <p>Now, I agree that the whole <em>East=Wisdom &amp; Peace</em> thing can be tedious. I throw up a little when I see Chinese character stepping stones in gardens. But I don&#39;t think we can apply this to green tea. </p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Truth: They Started It!</strong></p> <p>It&#39;s a fallacy, and kind of cocky, to assume that just because a trend is popular, it must have started in the West. Green tea is a very popular flavor throughout Asia, and has been for a long time. You can get green tea EVERYTHING in China, Japan, and Korea. Yogurt, Pocky, ice cream (the only ice cream I like, actually), mochi, chocolates, cookies, gum - the list goes on forever. (Also, there&#39;s lots of melon-flavored stuff, and I sincerely believe that honeydew-flavored yogurt is the closest thing to heaven that most people can ever hope to experience).</p> <p>The traditional Asian palette hasn&#39;t (yet) been tuned to super-sweet tastes, and green tea is a nice flavor in that it tones down the hyper-sugary taste of many desserts and treats. Desserts in East Asia tend to favor sweetened red beans, lightly sweet gelatin, and sometimes sweetened milk. But usually, dessert in Asia is fruit. </p> <p>Recap: the green-tea-in-everything trend didn&#39;t start in the US, but I&#39;m glad it being adopted here, because it&#39;s freaking delicious.</p> <p>Also, sure, &quot;Zen&quot; food might sound pretensious, unless you happen to understand the &quot;Zen&quot; that is a good piece of chocolate. &quot;Zen&quot; truffles are logical to anyone who finds <a href="http://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/choco.html">bliss</a> (scroll down to &quot;Chocolate and The Nervous System&quot;) in cocoa.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Snark: Who Knows if It&#39;s Good for You? </strong></p> <p>Next, Weisberg attacks claims that green tea is really, really good for you.</p> <p class="blockquote">Under the Food and Drug Administration&#39;s policy of permitting &quot;qualified health claims&quot; for which there is <em>some </em>evidence—often based on industry-funded research—marketers can make all sorts of improbable boasts (see under <a href="http://www.pomwonderful.com/" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">pomegranate juice</font></a>). Even when it rejects such assertions, <a href="http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/qhc-gtea.html" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">as it has for green tea and all cancers</font></a> as well as <a href="http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12718769/" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">heart disease</font></a>, the FDA seldom does anything to stop them. </p> <p>He has a point here, and the long-term benefits of green tea may not be well-established. In fact, I&#39;m sick and tired of studies that show <em>this</em> and studies that show <em>that</em>. Bran, beta carotene, vitamin C, chromium, soy - we&#39;re told to consume them like crazy to prevent cancer, and then told a few months later that they CAUSE cancer. </p> <p>Until we really buckle down and have some less biased studies, I wouldn&#39;t recommend that anyone drink lots of green tea, especially in the stead of actually exercising and eating well. I don&#39;t know if green tea can really prevent health problems or cancer or anything else.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Truth: It&#39;s Good for ME </strong></p> <p>But I do know this: I am a diabetic (Type 2, for those who need to know), and drinking green tea<strong><em> lowers my blood sugar</em></strong>. </p> <p>I know this because I have tested my blood sugar before and after drinking green tea, and it will drop my sugar by as much as 30 points. I&#39;m not saying that it works for everyone (it has the opposite affect on my sister, who has a bad blood sugar spike with any caffeine), but it works for some people, and shouldn&#39;t be discounted. Not that my experience alone is enough to validate the health benefits - but I think it should be studied, in the same way that cinnamon was.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Snark: Coprorations Blah Blah Blah Fat Americans</strong></p> <p>Weisberg follows up with the familiar &quot;Well, BIG BAD COMPANIES put green tea in stuff that isn&#39;t healthy, but you <em>think</em> it&#39;s healthy because it has green tea in it, but it&#39;s <em>not</em> healthy because it&#39;s Starbucks&quot; spiel. He even goes so far as to diss my local favorite green-tea joint <a href="http://www.kootsgreentea.com/">Koots</a> (Holla!), as a seller or less-than-healthy green-tea-infused items (green tea cheesecake - try it when you&#39;re in town).</p> <p class="blockquote">This follows on the success of Starbucks&#39; <a href="http://www.starbucks.com/retail/nutrition_beverage_detail.asp?selProducts=185&amp;strAction=GETDEFAULT&amp;x=21&amp;y=7" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">Tazo Green Tea Frappuccino</font></a>, which also uses matcha, green tea in pulverized form. A &quot;venti&quot; has 560 calories if you hold the whipped cream. (The unappreciated business genius of Starbucks is not charging $4 for a latte but rather giving adults permission to drink milkshakes, on the pretext that they are merely tea or coffee.) This is exceeded by the 640 calories in the &quot;power&quot; version of the <a href="http://jambajuice.com/menuguide/matchagreenteablast.html" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">Matcha Green Tea Blast</font></a> from Jamba Juice, a <a href="http://www.jambajuice.com/talk/franchiseinformation.html" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">franchise chain</font></a> chasing Howard Schultz&#39;s caffeinated footsteps. </p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Truth: It&#39;s Tasty, and No One is Lying About the Calories </strong></p> <p>You know, I don&#39;t think there&#39;s a single item at Starbucks that I enjoy that comes in at under 400 calories. And it is possible that people in line at Starbucks are saying to themselves &quot;Hm. The white chocolate mocha with raspberry... that sounds good. Oh, wait, green tea frappucino! That&#39;s GOT to be good for me!&quot;. But those people are dumb, and they&#39;d choose something terrible whether the green tea was there or not. </p> <p>[Also, I know a lot of women who have Starbucks for breakfast. Just a drink. 500 calories for breakfast isn&#39;t that bad. 3 meals a day x 500 calories + 200 calorie snack = 1700 calories a day. Now, if a 500 calorie drink is being consumed as a snack, then you&#39;ve got a problem, but I don&#39;t know many women who &quot;snack&quot; at Starbucks, and their frappucinos are a meal.]</p> <p>A trend is a trend, Weisberg! The next big push from Starbucks is going to be South American-influenced flavors. You got something against mangos and pretty Brazilian women in skimpy bikinis? Eh? Everyone loves a Brazilian!</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Snark: Down with White-tea! (Get it? White-tea? Whitey? Har!)</strong></p> <p>Next, in what I can only assume is an attempt at humor, Weisberg goes after the beauty industry for putting green tea in its products, and says this [emphasis mine]:</p> <p class="blockquote"><a href="http://www.origins.com/templates/products/mp.tmpl?CATEGORY_ID=CATEGORY5756" target="_blank"><font color="#0066cc">Origins &quot;Perfect World&quot; products</font></a> are made with increasingly fashionable white tea, which is sort of baby green tea (think baby arugula). According to the company, white tea is &quot;among the most potent antioxidants, anti-agers, anti-stress, anti-smoke, anti-pollution antidotes.&quot; <em><strong>How is it that tea becomes more medically potent as it loses color and flavor?</strong></em> Next in this progression will be an invisible <em><strong>ghost tea with the regenerative properties of fetal stem cells</strong></em>. </p> <p>Ha! Stem cells! What a riot! It&#39;s funny AND it&#39;s topical! </p> <p>Well, it was topical a few months back, anyway.</p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>The Truth: A Lesson in Oxidation</strong></p> <p>First let&#39;s look at the beauty argument; beauty-wise, green tea is mostly good for tightening your skin. </p> <p>Bonus beauty tip: Steep a bag of green tea, and use the cooled water to water your houseplants. Take the tea bag (if you are using bagged tea) and swipe it around your face. It&#39;s like a tiny facelift. It doesn&#39;t last all day, but it&#39;s nice for a couple of hours. All caffeine is great for reducing puffiness, so you can dab a little aloe and green tea around your eyes to reduce puffy skin during allergy season. </p> <p>Next, there&#39;s Weisberg&#39;s unfortunate belief that white tea can&#39;t possibly be as good, medicinally, as green tea.</p> <p>Here&#39;s a <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tea">brief explanation</a> for those who, like Weisberg, think that young tea has LOST flavor, as opposed to NOT DEVELOPING THE FULL FLAVOR OF GREEN TEA:</p> <p class="blockquote">...[T]ypes of tea are distinguished by the processing they undergo. Leaves of <em>Camellia sinensis</em> soon begin to wilt and <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxidation" title="Oxidation">oxidize</a> if not dried quickly after picking. The leaves turn progressively darker because <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chlorophyll" title="Chlorophyll">chlorophyll</a> breaks down and <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tannin" title="Tannin">tannins</a> are released.... The next step in processing is to stop the <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxidation" title="Oxidation">oxidation</a> process at a predetermined stage by heating, which deactivates the enzymes responsible. In black tea this is done simultaneously with drying.... Young leaves (new growth buds) that have undergone no oxidation; the buds may be shielded from sunlight to prevent formation of chlorophyll. White tea is produced in lesser quantities than most other styles, and can be correspondingly more expensive than tea from the same plant processed by other methods. It is less well known in countries outside of China, though this is changing with increased western interest in organic or premium teas. </p> <p>Basically, the message is this: it&#39;s a leaf that grows until it is picked. After it is picked, it begins to oxidize unless it is dried. As it oxidizes, it gets darker. The darker it gets, the less beneficial stuff it has in it. It&#39;s still good for you, but not as good for you as it was when it was lighter and less oxidized. How difficult is that?</p> <p>Weisberg ends up by snarking some more about green tea-infused booze, which I think we can all agree simply isn&#39;t an argument worth making. It&#39;s alcohol. Ergo, it&#39;s good. </p> <p><strong>MY</strong> point is the green tea is da bomb, whether on your mug or in your mug. </p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>Yeah, but it tastes... meh.</strong></p> <p>I know some of you are thinking this. I&#39;ve known a lot of people who claim that <em>they just can&#39;t get into green tea</em>. This is almost always because:</p> <ol> <li>They are buying crappy tea and</li> <li>They are burning the tea when they brew it</li> </ol> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>Buying</strong></p> <p>If you want to enjoy a cup of green tea, you have a couple decisions to make. First, decide if you want to pay more for good tea. Yes, you can buy bagged tea, and yes, there are good bagged teas. But you might as well buy loose leaf tea. It&#39;s just better quality, and you have more choice over what you are getting. With ground-up, bagged tea, who knows what kind of leaf is in there?</p> <p>Tea bags are filled with ground up tea, either because ground up tea brews faster and the industry is worried that you won&#39;t wait more than 30 seconds for your tea, or because what you are drinking is the dust that is swept off of the floors in tea factories and farms around the world. Either way, you can guarantee higher quality tea if you buy it loose leaf.</p> <p>Don&#39;t go nuts. Go somewhere that sells the tea, like a Whole Foods or an Asian market, and buy a little bit. Not much. No more than $10 worth. Oh, and do your darndest to buy organic. </p> <p class="sub-heading"><strong>Brewing</strong></p> <p>White and green tea have more anti-oxidants, and for some reason, scald really easily. Scalded tea is really bitter, and one bad cup can be enough to put someone off of tea for a while.</p> <p>Although you can brew a tasty cup of Earl Grey with boiling water, you have to use cooler water to make a cup of white or green tea. In fact, in many tea houses in Asia, the water you use is close to tepid, just under steaming. Me, I just pour a cup of boiling water and then add about 1/5 cup of cold water, and that does the trick. I steep my tea for about three minutes the first time and about seven minutes on the second round (you can reuse the leaves).</p> <p>Enjoying green tea doesn&#39;t have to be a transcendental experience or a guilt-trip. It&#39;s just a tasty thing that might be good for you.</p> <p>Photo by <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/kankan/">Kanko</a>.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-karim">Andrea Karim</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-green-tea-all-its-cracked-up-to-be-its-close">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-to-drink-tea">10 Reasons to Drink Tea</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-these-5-diet-moves-now-or-youll-regret-it-in-20-years">Make These 5 Diet Moves Now or You&#039;ll Regret It in 20 Years</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-keep-your-desk-from-killing-you">5 Ways to Keep Your Desk From Killing You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-can-do-to-reduce-your-risk-of-diabetes">10 Things You Can Do to Reduce Your Risk of Diabetes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/small-steps-to-weight-loss">Small, Cheap Steps to Weight Loss</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Health and Beauty antioxidants beauty diabetes green tea heart disease Oprah skin tea weight loss white tea Thu, 05 Apr 2007 18:22:35 +0000 Andrea Karim 460 at http://www.wisebread.com