According to Linda Osborne in the"All About Tea Knowledge Cards," "black tea contains more fluoride than a comparable amont of fluoridated water. Tea also contains calcium, zine, B vitamins, and folic acid. Green teas in particular contain antioxidants found nowhere else.
Tea also contains caffiene and the longer the leaves have oxidized, the more caffiene it contains. Black tea has the most. However, to give you an idea of the amounts, a five ounce cup of coffee has 80-115 milligrams of caffeine. A cup of black tea has no more than 40, and green tea prepared in the same manner only 3. Linda Osborne suggests that tea can be decaffeinated at home by pouring off the first cup of water after 30 to 60 seconds, and adding new water to steep the leaves a second time.
A tea made from any other plant is more properly called a herbal infusion, or a tisane. Their use is even more ancient than tea's. Plants commonly used for such infusions are chamomile, ginger, peppermint, lavender and lemon verbena. Depending on the plant, all parts may be used not just the leaves, including the roots, bark, berries, and seeds.
According to the Angels, teas and tisanes can be considered part of one's daily rainbow as a green food primarily, because they're plants. However, certain teas or tisanes, such as lavender, because of the color of the part used to make the tea, can be considered a blue/purple food as well. An infusion of golden calendula flowers would be considered yellow, and luscious hibiscus, red. Thus, teas and herbal infusions can be another way to ensure you not only eat a rainbow every day, its a way to ensure you're getting adequate water. Herbal teas, with the exception of yerba mate, don't contain caffeine. Check out our friend Rose of Walk In The Woods, LLC for more on making wonderful herbal infusions.