Is Iced Tea OK to drink?

A recent question comes from Dan:  “I’ve been wondering – is iced tea alright?   Is it ok to drink, or is it not healthy?glass-of-iced-tea-with-a-lemon-pv

The answer is pretty straightforward, with a couple of qualifiers up front.

  • Avoid sweetened tea –  it’s an extra source of sugar at best, artificial sweeteners (which should be avoided) at worst.  If you *must* drink sweetened tea, go for a natural sweetener like sugar or stevia or xylitol – but you’re best off avoiding the sweeteners.
  • Go for brewed iced tea – better flavor and more flavonoids and corresponding health benefits
    (see the linked USDA database for flavonoid content and compare for yourself)

fresh lemon slicesWith these in mind, have that glass of iced tea, have two or three.  Make sure you include plenty of water as part of your healthy lifestyle, but don’t worry about having several glasses of tea as well.

You can also add a squeeze of lemon for an added healthy zing

In addition to flavonoids, tea is a source of a few important minerals including potassium and manganese.
So while its not, or even if it’s not – enjoy a big glass of guilt free iced tea – not only is it ok, it can help you replace other unhealthy elements of your diet and help you move toward a healthier diet and lifestyle.

 

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