Do you fancy a cup of tea? If so, you and billions of people from across the globe share the same affinity for this beloved beverage. But it isn’t your ordinary drink, and there’s more to it than meets the eye.
Check out these 10 fun facts about tea, for a bit of fun and inspiration.
1. Did you know that tea was supposedly invented by accident?
The origins of tea can be traced all the way back to 2737 BC in China. Legend has it that Emperor Shennong, who is also the founder of Chinese medicine, was drinking boiled water when leaves flew and fell inside his bowl! He enjoyed the flavor and the rejuvenation he felt after drinking, so he started researching about plants and their medicinal properties.
2. Despite the drink’s ancient roots, tea bags were only invented in the 20th century.
Americans have a penchant for making things more convenient, and they did that by creating the popular tea brewing method. TIME’s piece on ‘A Brief History of the Tea Bag’ reveals that there are two accounts of its invention. The first is that a couple from Milwaukee filed a patent for a “tea leaf holder” in 1901. Meanwhile, the second one claims that a tea importer shipped out the first silk pouches in 1908.
3. Tea is the second most popular drink in the world, after water. Indeed, Americans consume 84 billion servings of tea each year.
Across the pond, Gala Bingo’s ‘Fifty Shades of Earl Grey’ feature highlights how Brits can drink up to six cups of tea in a single day, with around a quarter of the population starting to drink tea before the age of 5. To highlight their deep love for this drink, even more, the British population drinks 165 million cups each day.
4. Tea can cost up to $10,000 in some places on earth!
Tea is affordable worldwide, but in the Chinese city and tea capital Wuyishan, a pot of their legendary da hong pao tea costs $10,000! Not to mention, Condé Nast Traveler’s report on this luxurious tea reveals that you even have to go through a broker for a cup.
5. People from across the world sure know how to take this traditional drink to the next level.
In Dubai, the world’s largest cup of tea was made in 2018 — weighing in at an astounding 1320.86 gallons! The record-breaking brew took 12 hours to make before it was placed in its 12-foot container. This gigantic cup was brewed thanks to a heating system that was set at 185 degrees.
6. Both tea and coffee are popular sources of caffeine, but most people tend to get the latter for a boost of energy.
However, tea leaves actually have higher caffeine levels than coffee beans do. The reason why you get a stronger buzz from coffee is because more caffeine is needed to produce a cup of coffee.
7. Apart from providing you with energy, tea also has properties that work wonders for skin.
Cold black or green tea bags help flatten puffy circles. Drinking tea helps reduce bloating, clears skin, and counters against the aging process.
8. Perhaps one of the reasons why tea is so treasured is because of how beneficial it is for your physical health.
Different teas contain a plethora of restorative properties. One of the healthiest variants, green tea, has been found to prevent heart attack and stroke, since it helps dissolve dangerous plaque in the blood vessels.
9. Tea’s healing powers also extend to mental health.
In fact, Bustle’s guide to the top teas for anxiety notes how a scientific study discovered that drinking chamomile tea significantly lessens moderate-to-severe symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder. Plus, this type of tea helps you sleep better at night, too.