Green tea has long been considered the queen bee of healthy teas. And yes, it's good for you—but several others offer similarly awesome health benefits and deserve just as much attention
Green Tea for Weight Management
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You've likely heard about the wonders of green tea, but one thing may surprise you: "Green tea and black tea actually come from the same plant," says Ruxton. "They are just prepared differently at the tea plantations using steam and drying." While black tea's the go-to for keeping your heart in tip-top shape, lean on green tea for its ability to keep your weight in check. The tea's catechins and caffeine help with weight management, according to a recent study. (Try these 20 New Ways to Enjoy Green Tea.)
Rosehip Tea for Joint Pain
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When your joints are aching, it's easy to reach for aspirin for a quick fix. But rosehip tea offers similar anti-inflammatory relief and makes for a solid alternative. One study found patients with arthritis were twice as likely to respond positively to rosehips than the placebo. As a result, they reduced their pain and inflammation without the negative side effects associated with aspirin overload. Plus, rosehips are high in antioxidants such as vitamin C and polyphenols, says Ruxton.
Peppermint Tea for Stomach Issues
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Refreshing peppermint tea is great for messy tummy issues like indigestion and irritable bowel syndrome. "The active ingredient in peppermint tea is menthol," says Ruxton. That's the same ingredient commonly found in gum and toothpaste. In tea form, it boasts the ability to calm indigestion. One study found peppermint essential oil, which is found in the tea, also helps with diarrhea in people with irritable bowel syndrome. (Can't get enough peppermint? Try these beauty products for a minty fix.)
Chamomile Tea for Stress and Insomnia
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Want to get to sleep stat or just calm down after a stressful day? Chamomile to the rescue! "Chamomile tea comes from the Daisy family of plants and has antibacterial qualities," says Ruxton. It also helps you chill. A recent study published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing found when 80 postpartum women drank chamomile tea for two weeks, they significantly improved their sleep quality and moods.
Licorice Tea for Heartburn
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Anyone who battles heartburn knows that burning sensation is the absolute worst. Say sayonara to the discomfort and hello to the healing benefits of licorice tea. In fact, it was used as traditional medicine way back in ancient Egypt, says Ruxton, and its powers still stand today. The tea, which comes from the root of the licorice plant, is loaded with glycyrrhizin, a powerful anti-inflammatory, she says.
Ginger Tea for Nausea
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Feeling queasy? Pour yourself a cup of ginger tea. "The effects are mainly due to the presence of gingerols," says Ruxton. Gingerols are the active ingredient found in fresh ginger. A recent study from the European Review for Medical and Pharmaceutical Sciences also found ginger extract—which is found in ginger tea—treats indigestion, nausea, and vomiting. Try it with peppermint, honey, or lemon when your stomach's doing somersaults, she suggests. (Find out what to eat for an upset stomach.)
Black Tea for Heart Health
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Keep your heart healthy by pouring a few cups of black tea every morning. A study from the journal Preventive Medicine found when study participants drank roughly two and a half cups a day for 12 weeks, they lowered their risk of cardiovascular disease and boosted their antioxidants. "To maximize taste, don't use boiling water to make your tea," says Ruxton. Instead, heat it to just below boiling—176°F if you want to be precise. Then, let the teabag brew for one or two minutes, she says.
Red Bush Tea for High Cholesterol
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Red bush tea is sometimes called rooibos. It's got plenty going for it, including the fact that it's caffeine-free and satisfies your late-afternoon tea fix when you don't want to mess with your sleep. The antioxidant-rich tea comes from South African bushes and has a complex, almost nutty taste. In a Journal of Ethnopharmacology study, participants drank six cups of the tea each day, and after six weeks, they significantly reduced their bad LDL cholesterol levels and triglyceride levels and boosted their good HDL cholesterol. (That's why it's one of the 5 Types of Tea That Help You Lose Weight.)