4 best teas to aid mental health issues
A 2017 study revealed that 10.7% of the world population suffers from mental health, with anxiety and depression accounting for 3.8% and 3.4 % respectively.
Although most of these cases are treated medically, taking a hot health-giving natural tea in the morning or at any time of the day is often an excellent way of getting relief from anxiety and stress, as well as helping to provide an energy boost for the day ahead.
If you are feeling anxious and stressed, maybe it’s worth trying beneficial teas as the first course of action. After all, there is a great deal of concern by NHS England about the current over-prescribing of anti-depressants. In fact, in the over 65s, the number taking antidepressants has doubled in the last ten years.
No wonder our ancestors have used tea for many health benefits, including improving their mental health!
Let’s get a more in-depth look at the four best teas that show incredible effects on mental health.
1. Green tea
It has phytochemicals such as caffeine and L-theanine that have a positive impact on cognition and mood. These chemicals have beneficial effects on suppressing distraction and sustaining both memory and attention.
It is one of the most researched, and for many years scores of people all over the globe have been using this product for improving the various aspect of health. It is among the healthiest hot drinks due to the presence of polyphenols which are compounds with antioxidant activity.
It has also been found to be effective in preventing Alzheimer’s, boosting immunity, improving mental health, weight loss, detoxifying the body, reducing high blood pressure, preventing cancers, and fastening metabolism and promoting healthy skin. Cups of these hot drinks will help you remain calm and alert.
2. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile tea is prepared from leaves of the chamomile plant and provides a unique flavour that is characteristic of crisp green apple. Most individuals take the beverage when approaching bedtime since it assists in inducing relaxation and sleep.
It was found useful as an alternative treatment for depression in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy due to its affordability, safety, and low side effects.
Its calming effect is as a result of its chemical composition most importantly apigenin— an antioxidant that acts on neurotransmitters in the brain to induce relaxation. Excess stress and anxiety lead to sleeplessness; it helps to deal with this condition.
3. Peppermint Tea
It has natural compounds that help to protect and preserve cognition and memory. It has robust anti-anxiety properties courtesy of its revitalizing scent. You prepare it by infusing the leaves on hot water.
Peppermint contains menthol that helps to relax muscles. When you are stressed, you will also feel irritable and tense. This aromatic tea will help to reduce stress and anxiety and keep you calm.
Since this hot drink lacks caffeine, it is an excellent beverage to take as you prepare to go to bed. It helps you to get a peaceful sleep after a hectic day.
Although hot drinks are effective in reducing stress and anxiety, pregnant women should not take it since it increases the risk of miscarriage.
Besides health benefits I have mentioned above, peppermint is also useful for boosting immunity, relieving stomach upset, weight loss, fighting cold & flu, boosting memory, and fighting bad breath, among others.
4. Oolong tea
Oolong tea is a traditional Chinese tea that is made from leaves of Camellia sinensis, the same plant that is used when preparing both green and black tea.
Oolong tea has several components that are beneficial for brain function, starting with caffeine which increases the levels of the brain messenger’s dopamine and norepinephrine that help in improving attention, mood, and brain function.
Oolong has polyphenols that bring in a calming effect, thus helping reduce anxiety and stress. Interestingly, some individuals chew oolong tea to improve alertness and sharpen their thinking skills. Research proves oolong tea has a positive contribution to brain function.
It is essential to note, hot drinks are not a replacement for prescription medication. If you suffer severe forms of depression and anxiety, you should consult your doctor. The same applies if you are taking any other drugs: because the teas are so powerful, this may result in interactions that can be harmful. But for mild cases of anxiety and depressions, these teas offer a natural calming effect.