The Health Benefits of Coffee vs Tea: A Comparison of the Two

Do you always utter the words “I need coffee?” first thing in the morning? Well, you’re not alone — 64% of adult Americans drink a cup of Joe every single day!

Not surprised? Well, here’s something that surely will:

You can now find tea in almost 80% of U.S. households. That same source also reported that more than 159 million Americans drink tea on any given day.

So yes, the U.S. is now a nation of both coffee and tea drinkers. Especially since both beverages offer numerous health benefits.

The question is, what are the health benefits of coffee vs tea? Which one should you be drinking more?

All that, we’ll cover in this ultimate guide, so be sure to keep reading!

The Primary Health Benefits of Coffee vs Tea that Make the Former a Better Choice

Taste isn’t the only thing that makes coffee so good — it also has some health advantages over tea. Let’s take a closer look at what coffee can bring to the table.

Energizing 

Does coffee give you energy? Definitely.

That energy-booster comes from caffeine, which is a stimulant. This substance blocks adenosine, a type of inhibitory neurotransmitter. This then leads to higher dopamine and norepinephrine levels in the body.

This increase in various neurotransmitters then results in higher energy levels. It also boosts certain brain functions, like vigilance, reaction times, and mood.

Now, tea does have caffeine content, but it’s much lower than what coffee contains. In fact, an 8-ounce cup of brewed coffee can contain anywhere from 95 to 165 mg of caffeine. Whereas the same serving of brewed black tea only has between 25 and 48 mg of the stimulant.

Greater Levels of Physical Performance

As you drink coffee, your bloodstream absorbs its caffeine content. It then acts as a nervous system stimulant, sending signals to fat cells to start breaking down fat. Your body can now transform that broken-down fat into energy.

With higher energy levels, you can perform physical activities longer and better.

At the same time, caffeine also ups epinephrine – or adrenaline – levels in the blood. Adrenaline is the hormone that triggers your body’s fight-or-flight response. With more of this hormone in your system, your body can take on rigorous physical activities.

In fact, a study found that caffeine ingestion raises physical performance by up to 12%! That makes drinking black coffee a great idea before hitting the gym.

Reduced Risks from Deadly Diseases

Three to five cups of Joe a day may help lower the risk of premature death from some types of illnesses. What’s more, this isn’t only one of the many dark roast coffee health benefits — it applies to even decaf drinkers!

A recent Harvard study took a look at both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee. The researchers found that both can lower the risks of death from type 2 diabetes. They also noted lower risks from death caused by heart diseases and suicide.

Where Tea Excels

Coffee is great and all, but tea also has a long list of health benefits. Here are some of the benefits of tea that also make it an awesome beverage.

An All-Day Source of Antioxidants

True, coffee has shown to have more antioxidant activity than tea. Remember though, that coffee also has more caffeine than tea. As such, too much coffee can make you feel jumpy, alarmed, and jittery.

Since tea contains half or less caffeine than coffee, you can drink more of it all day long. Meaning, you may be able to get more antioxidants from it in the long run.

Reduced Risk of Esophageal Cancer

Green tea, with its high polyphenol content, may help prevent esophageal cancer. Studies, like this one, also found that tea can inhibit the progress of certain tumors.

May Help Prevent Obesity

Compared to other teas, white tea goes through fewer processing methods. As such, it retains more active ingredients, such as the epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG).

EGCG, according to researchers, has anti-adipogenic properties. Thanks to these, white tea has shown to prevent new fat cells from developing. It also has mobilizing effects on mature fat cells.

What does this all mean? Well, in layman’s terms, white tea can help prevent weight gain that can then lead to obesity.

A Tasty Stress-Reliever

If coffee can energize you and make you more alert, tea has a relaxing, soothing effect. Black tea, in particular, has shown to reduce the levels of cortisol — the stress hormone. In fact, a study found that this tea can reduce cortisol levels by 47%!

Getting the Most Out of these Beverages: It’s All in the Preparation and Drinking in Moderation

To reap the most benefits out of your coffee, tea, or both, ditch the heavy cream and sugar! It’s best to enjoy these drinks as is, without any extra sweetener.

Also, be sure you don’t gulp down steaming hot cups, as you run the risk of scalding and burns. Sip slowly and savor each cup instead. Speaking of which, you may want to check this site out to see more creative ways to get your daily dose of caffeine.

Last, but not the least, don’t go beyond 400 mg of caffeine every day. That translates to about four cups of brewed coffee, twice more for tea, depending on the type of tea you drink. Again, too much of them, as great as they are, can give you unpleasant caffeine jitters.

The Bottom Line: Coffee and Tea are Both Good for You

There really is no need to compare the health benefits of coffee vs tea, as they help your health in different ways. Many of their benefits also overlap, such as their antioxidative effects.

If you want something to stimulate your senses though, then go for coffee. On the other hand, sip tasty teas if you want to relax and melt those stresses away.

Ready for more life pro tips that can pave the way to better health? Then be sure to keep following our website by saving it to your bookmarks bar!

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