Ceylon tea is popular among tea enthusiasts for its rich flavor and fragrant aroma.
While there are some differences in terms of taste and antioxidant content, it comes from the same plant as other types of tea and boasts a similar set of nutrients.
Certain types of Ceylon tea have been linked to impressive health benefits — ranging from increased fat burning to better blood sugar control and decreased cholesterol levels.
This article reviews the nutritional profile, benefits, and potential downsides of Ceylon tea, plus how to make it at home.Share on Pinterest
What Is Ceylon Tea?
Ceylon tea refers to tea produced in the highlands of Sri Lanka — formerly known as Ceylon.
Like other types of tea, it’s made from the dried and processed leaves of the tea plant, Camellia sinensis.
However, it may contain a higher concentration of several antioxidants, including myricetin, quercetin, and kaempferol (1).
It’s also said to differ slightly in flavor. The tea’s notes of citrus and full-bodied taste are due to the unique environmental conditions in which it’s grown.
It’s commonly available in oolong, green, black, and white Ceylon varieties — which differ based on specific processing and production methods.Summary Ceylon tea is a type of tea produced in Sri Lanka that has a distinct flavor and high antioxidant content.
Impressive Nutritional Profile
Ceylon tea is an excellent source of antioxidants — compounds that help counter oxidative cell damage.
Research suggests that antioxidants play a central role in health and may protect against chronic conditions, such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease (2).
In particular, Ceylon tea is rich in the antioxidants myricetin, quercetin, and kaempferol (1).
Green Ceylon tea contains epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), a compound that has exhibited powerful health-promoting properties in human and test-tube studies (3).
All Ceylon tea varieties supply a small amount of caffeine and several trace minerals, including manganese, cobalt, chromium, and magnesium (4, 5).Summary Ceylon tea is high in antioxidants and contains a small amount of caffeine and several trace minerals.
May Aid Weight Loss
Some studies have found that adding tea to your daily diet can burn fat and enhance weight loss.
One review reported that black tea helps reduce body weight by blocking the digestion and absorption of fat to reduce calorie intake (6).
Certain compounds in tea may also help activate a specific enzyme involved in breaking down fat cells that prevents fat accumulation (6).
A study in 240 people showed that consuming green tea extract for 12 weeks led to significant reductions in body weight, waist circumference, and fat mass (7).
Another study in 6,472 people found that hot tea consumption was associated with lower waist circumference and lower body mass index (8).Summary Several compounds in tea have been proven to boost fat burning and decrease fat absorption. Drinking hot tea or consuming green tea extract has been linked to increased weight loss and reduced body fat.
May Help Stabilize Blood Sugar
High blood sugar can have several adverse effects on health, including weight loss, fatigue, and delayed wound healing (9).
Research suggests that adding certain varieties of Ceylon tea to your daily routine may help keep blood sugar levels steady and prevent adverse side effects.
For instance, one small study in 24 people showed that drinking black tea was able to significantly reduce blood sugar levels in people with and without prediabetes (10).
Similarly, a large review of 17 studies noted that drinking green tea was effective at reducing levels of both blood sugar and insulin — a hormone that regulates blood sugar (11).
What’s more, other studies observed that regular tea consumption may be associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes (12, 13).Summary Drinking tea may help lower blood sugar levels and has been linked to a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes.
May Support Heart Health
Heart disease is a major problem, accounting for an estimated 31.5% of deaths worldwide (14).
Certain varieties of Ceylon tea may help decrease risk factors for heart disease and improve heart health.
In fact, several studies found that green tea and its components can reduce total and LDL (bad) cholesterol, as well as triglycerides — a type of fat found in your blood (15, 16).
Similarly, one study showed that black tea was able to decrease levels of both total and LDL (bad) cholesterol in people with elevated levels (17).
Still, more research is needed, as other studies have not observed a significant impact of black tea on cholesterol levels (18, 19).Summary Studies show that certain varieties of Ceylon tea may reduce levels of total and LDL (bad) cholesterol, as well as triglycerides, though other research has turned up mixed results.
Potential Side Effects
Ceylon tea can be a safe and healthy addition to your diet when consumed in moderation.
However, it contains around 14–61 mg of caffeine per serving — depending on the type of tea (4).
Caffeine cannot only be addictive but is also linked to side effects like anxiety, insomnia, high blood pressure, and digestive issues (20).
For pregnant women, it’s recommended to limit caffeine intake to less than 200 mg per day, as the substance can cross the placenta and increase the risk of miscarriage or low birth weight (21, 22).
Caffeine can also interact with certain medications, including those for heart conditions and asthma, as well as stimulants and certain antibiotics (23).
Ceylon tea is still much lower in caffeine than beverages like coffee, making it a great alternative for those looking to cut back on caffeine.
Nevertheless, it’s best to stick to only a few servings a day to reduce your risk of adverse effects. Be sure to consult your doctor if you have any concerns.Summary Ceylon tea contains caffeine, which can cause adverse side effects and may be associated with health concerns.
How to Make It
Brewing a cup of Ceylon tea at home is an easy and delicious way to enjoy the health benefits of this beverage.
Start by filling both a filtered teapot and the cups you plan on using halfway with hot water to preheat them, which helps slow down the cooling of the tea.
Next, dump out the water and add your choice of Ceylon tea leaves to the teapot.
It’s generally recommended to use about 1 teaspoon (2.5 grams) of tea leaves per 8 ounces (237 ml) of water.
Fill the teapot with water that’s around 194–205ºF (90–96ºC) and cover with the lid.
Finally, allow the tea leaves to steep for approximately three minutes before pouring into cups and serving.
Keep in mind that allowing the tea leaves to steep for longer increases both the caffeine content and flavor — so feel free to adjust according to your personal preferences.Summary Ceylon tea is easy to make at home. Combine hot water with tea leaves and allow it to steep for around three minutes.
The Bottom Line
Ceylon tea refers to tea produced in the highlands of Sri Lanka. It’s available in oolong, green, white, and black tea varieties.
Aside from being rich in antioxidants, Ceylon tea is also linked to health benefits like improved heart health and blood sugar control, as well as weight loss.
It’s also easy to make at home and has a unique, one-of-a-kind taste that sets it apart from other teas.
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