In times of crisis and desperation every good English mum and Irish ma knows exactly what to do. She puts on the kettle. And in the southern US there’s not much a nice glass of sweet tea can’t cure. For generations people all over the world have turned to tea to help soothe the nerves and ease anxiety. But what is it about this enticing elixir that answer the call to calm?
Tea is ritual and tea is dependable-a stronghold in the storm of life. Just thinking about tea time can relax us. The anticipation of a warm cuppa, brewed just right, is so much more than a mid-afternoon pick-me-up or a late evening sleep inducer. Tea can rouse us from a deep morning slumber and fortify us to take on the challenges of the day.
Tea is much more than tradition, however Tea is the perfect panacea for those who find their nerves a bit rattled. And rightfully so. Tea has so many calming properties it’s no wonder mum’s and ma’s across the globe and throughout history have poured cuppa upon cuppa in an effort to mellow life’s many dramatic twists and turns.
How Tea Calms You Emotionally
The ritual of making tea is, in itself, a peaceful endeavor. You heat the water to the proper temperature, pour it over your sachet or infuser, and let the tea leaves do their job. In short order you’ll have a warm cup in your hands and you feel a renewed sense that everything might possibly be ok.
Tea’s aromatherapy is also a very pleasant experience. The steam that comes off of a cup of Lavender Grey can soften your furrowed brow and untie the knots in your neck and shoulders. Green tea’s soft, mildly earthy aroma can transport your mind to misty meadows and far-away lands. Breathe in the scent of chamomile, which is actually a tisane, and your cares fall away. And the pungent spices in chai tea impart a feeling of serenity. All these benefits before your first sip!
Of course tea contains some caffeine and you may believe this stimulant property would promote jittery nerves rather than calming you down. That can be true for some individuals, but ounce for ounce the caffeine in tea doesn’t equate to that in coffee. While tea leaves contain more caffeine than coffee beans, the extraction is different and tea is much more diluted than coffee, lowering the caffeine content n your cup and lessening the impact of caffeine on your nerves.
Tea has many more beneficial properties that outweigh the caffeine. Green and black tea varieties contain the amino acid Theanine. Theanine has been proven to reduce anxiety by increasing the number of mood balancing neurotransmitters in your brain. Theanine also modulates the feel-good properties of serotonin and dopamine, further calming the nerves and easing anxiety.
Theanine, this amazing byproduct of your cuppa, also simulates the positive effects of meditation by stimulating alpha brainwaves that are associated with a deep sense of relaxation, sharpened focus and mental clarity. For this reason those who drink black and green teas are less likely to feel the caffeine jitters. Instead you’ll be alert yet relaxed. That’s the ideal way to approach any kind of nerve-wracking situation.
Tea Promotes Physical Wellness
When problems take hold the best thing you can do is remain calm and alert. To that end, tea has you covered. Additionally you want to be well-equipped physically to hold things together. Tea is loaded with healthy benefits that will help you stay in tip top shape.
A diet high in antioxidants can help banish situational depression and guard your body against the ill effects of stress. We all know stress plays a key role in many diseases. The antioxidant benefits of tea are found to reduce the risk of cancer, stroke, heart disease, breathing complications from asthma, and work on your brain as well.
Tea’s antioxidants also boost your immune system and lessen inflammation, keeping colds and viruses at bay while promoting healthy blood flow. When you have your health you have everything. And you certainly have one less thing to worry about, which should soothe your nerves a bit.
Tea is “Comfort Food”
Just like mom’s meatloaf and mashed potatoes, tea can evoke a sense of familiarity and comfort. A lovely cuppa, perhaps with a splash of milk, can induce memories of happier times when life was far more easy. Your favorite tea, enjoyed in your favorite way, can offer a little reprieve from the stress you face in your day-to-day life and fortify you for whatever comes your way.
Find your favorite way to soothe your nerves by sampling a cup of tea the next time life’s problems seem too much to bear. You’ll promote good physical health, emotional calm, mental clarity, and happy memories. That’s one tea-riffic tonic.