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9 Proven Ways To Make A Perfect Cup Of Tea

9 Proven Ways To Make A Perfect Cup Of Tea

Tea is the world’s second most consumed beverage after water (Surprised beer isn’t number 1? Me too!). Americans consume a whopping  3.6 billion gallons of tea a year. Black, green, white, earl grey, English breakfast, oolong are a leafy handful of the 3,000 varieties of tea.

Some scientists dedicate themselves to finding cures for diseases. Others to the creation of the perfect cup of tea.

Here are nine scientifically-supported, researched methods that’ll make your next cup taste even better. So, brew a cup of tea, sit down and enjoy… and then stand up, brew another more perfect cup of tea using what you’ve learned.

1.Time Your Brew

Possibly the most contentious part of making a cup of tea is how long it should be steeped. So what’s the definitive answer? Well, ergh, it depends. You see, every tea is different. Somewhere between two and five minutes is the optimal brewing period, depending on the leaf.

Here’s a handy infographic that’ll look great on your kitchen wall above the kettle.

Don’t have a stop watch? Hit play on these songs in line with the type of tea you’re making.

Green Tea:  Fell in Love With A Girl (1:48) – The White Stripes

Black Tea: Song 2 (2:00) – Blur

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Oolong Tea: Pinball Wizard (3:01) – The Who

White Tea: Sexual Healing (4:00) – Marvin Gaye

Mate/Roobios/Herbal Tea: Smells Like Teen Spirit (5:00) – Nirvana

2.Water Temperature

Boiling Kettle
    Ahh! That’s Hot!
    Credit: Vélocia via Flickr

    Like steeping times, water temperature varies based on the type of tea.

    It ranges from 175 to 210 degrees Fahrenheit (80-100C) depending on the type of tea.

    The UK Tea & Infusions Association (Yes, that’s a thing) says that using water that is too hot for your type of tea will cause a bitter taste.

    3.The Water’s Gotta Be Fresh

    water droplet
      Stale Water Means Stale Tea
      Credit: .aditya. via Flickr

      Would you take a bath in water that’s been sitting there all day?

      Then don’t use water that’s been sitting idle in the kettle. It doesn’t have to be fresh from the Swiss Alps. Freshly poured from the tap will do.

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      According to a Second World War-Era short film made by the Empire Tea Bureau, always use fresh water when making tea. Stale water means stale tea.

      4.Don’t Be In A Hurry To Drink Your Freshly Brewed Tea

      tea drinker
        Don’t Go Drinking That Tea Just Yet
        Credit: LoKan Sardari via Flickr

        Obviously throwing boiling water down your throat isn’t a good idea but there’s more to it.

        Scientists in England determined that a cup of tea is best consumed after it has be left to sit for six minutes.

        By this time your cup of tea will have cooled to 140 degrees Fahrenheit (60C) and released all its flavours.

        It reaches the point of un-drinkability after 17 minutes and 30 seconds. Sure, we’re all busy. But no one is that busy that they take more than 17 minutes to drink a cup of tea!

        5.Cool Your Tea By Leaving A Teaspoon In It

        Teaspoon
          Cool Your Tea With Science.
          Credit: Tom Page via Flickr

          In a hurry to drink your fine brew?

          According to the Royal Society of Chemistry, leaving a teaspoon in your tea for a few seconds is an effective cooling method.

          Cool your tea while impressing your friends with your amazing scientific knowledge.

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          6.When’s the Milk Go In?

          Spilled Milk
            Put Milk In At The Right Time
            Credit: Caro Wallis via Flickr

            Humans started drinking milk during the agricultural revolution around 12,000 years ago.

            The argument about whether to put the milk or the tea in first likely began about five minutes later.

            It’s been a long-held point of contention for tea drinkers. So what’s the answer?

            Well both sides of the great milk divide are right.

            If you’re pouring brewed tea from a teapot into a cup it’s perfectly fine to add the milk first.

            However, if you’re pouring boiling water directly into the cup, NEVER put the teabag in with the milk first. The milk will cool the water and the tea won’t brew properly.

            7.If It’s Not Stored Tight, It Won’t Taste Right

            Star Wars Tea
              Make Sure The Tea Tastes Right For Your Friends
              Credit: DeviantArt

              Tea sucks up moisture and odor which can spoil the taste of your tea.

              If your tea isn’t stored properly, away from strong odored food stuffs, it won’t matter how perfect your steeping period and water temperature are, its taste will be compromised from the outset.

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              8.Loose Leaf or Tea Bag?

              117386267_cfcc05b778_b
                Leave Teabags To Your Cat
                Credit: Jiva via Flickr

                Simply, loose leaf.

                Tea leaves in loose leaf tea have the freedom to unfurl completely during the steeping process, providing a better flavor and fully releasing the tea’s catechins (the health-boosting antioxidants in tea).

                The more finely chopped leaves of tea bags can leave small particles and produce a lesser flavor.

                You can also re-steep loose leaf tea leaves.

                Yeah, yeah, I know, the whole convenience thing. But are you willing to trade flavour and benefits for convenience?

                9.Do What George Orwell Tells You, Make It Strong

                Orwell
                  Orwell Knows Best
                  Credit: Wikimedia

                  Famed tea enthusiast George Orwell wrote in his 1946 essay A Nice Cup Of Tea: “One strong cup of tea is better than twenty weak ones.”

                  Can’t argue with that.

                  Featured photo credit: Haneburger via Wikimedia via upload.wikimedia.org

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                  15 Highly Successful People Who Failed On Their Way To Success 9 Proven Ways To Make A Perfect Cup Of Tea Are you an aspiring billionaire? You better read this.

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                  Last Updated on May 21, 2019

                  13 Bad Habits You Need to Quit Right Away

                  13 Bad Habits You Need to Quit Right Away

                  Creating your productivity ritual — a routine that helps you to maintain a peak level of energy can get you the best out of your days.

                  Part of creating your productivity routine involves removing activities that drain you (what I call “kryptonites”), and that includes your bad habits.

                  Like it or not, bad habits are bad for you — mentally, physically, emotionally and even socially in some cases. While some bad habits are harder to quit than others, it doesn’t change the fact that you need to get rid of them. Here are 13 bad habits to quit right away:

                  1. Stress Eating

                  I used to be a serious stress eater. I would eat whenever I felt unhappy, stressed, disappointed, anxious, or even… happy! My eating had nothing to do with being hungry, and everything to do with using food to fill my emotional voids.

                  While eating would comfort me, this feeling was momentary and would disappear right after I was done eating. Instead, what I had left would be the same emotional void that triggered me to eat in the first place (be it unhappiness or stress), a 2,000 excess calorie intake over what I should have eaten for the day, and anger at myself for having stress ate.

                  I’ve since overcome stress eating. I have healthy eating habits and a healthy relationship with food today where I no longer use food as a tool to fill my emotions.

                  If you are a stress eater, don’t fret — here’s how to manage your stress better:

                  How to Manage Stress (A Step-by-Step Guide to Turn Stress Into Success)

                  2. Nail Biting

                  Not only is nail biting unhygienic, it is also socially repelling, leads to dental problems like malocclusion of the anterior teeth,[1] potentially cause stomach problems,[2] and lead to severely deformed fingernails in the long run.

                  People who bite their nails tend to have shorter nails than the average person; their nail plates also experience scarring and may eventually become absent.[3]

                  Understand what triggers your nail biting behavior and replace it with another neutral to positive habit. Make habits to break habits.

                  For example, if you bite your nails when you are stressed, go for a walk or listen to music instead the next time you feel stressed.

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                  3. Hanging out with Naysayers

                  We all know these people — people who play devil’s advocate to every idea you have and every goal you want to pursue. We are already our greatest self-critics, so it doesn’t help when there’s someone beside us, ever ready to pounce on what we say and tear it down.

                  Hang out less with these naysayers and spend more time with supportive people who share constructive feedback instead. You will be much happier this way.

                  Learn how to get rid of naysayers with these 10 Ways to Ignore the Naysayers and Achieve Your Dreams.

                  4. Being with People Who Don’t Appreciate You

                  Haven’t all of us been in this situation before? Trying to please people who don’t appreciate us? Bending over backwards to be there for people when they are never there for us?

                  While we give without expectations of return, we need to draw a line with people who don’t value us because these people damage our souls.

                  Stop spending time with people who don’t appreciate you, and spend more time with people who do instead.

                  Unsure who you should get rid of? Learn about it here: 5 Kinds of Toxic People That You Need to Get Rid of Now

                  5. Smoking

                  Smoking is one of the leading causes of preventable death globally.[4]

                  In just the United States alone, about 500,000 deaths are attributed to smoking-related diseases annually. A recent study estimated that as much as one-third of China’s male population will have significantly shortened life-spans due to smoking! Gender-wise, male and female smokers lose an average of 13.2 and 14.5 years of life respectively — that’s over a decade of life right there.[5]

                  Not only that, smoking causes pre-mature skin aging (i.e. wrinkles), yellowing of teeth, bad breath, and worse of all — jeopardy of the health of people around you, including your loved ones. Studies have shown that non-smokers exposed to second-hand smoke are at risk to many of the health problems associated with direct smoking.[6]

                  Smoking risks

                    6. Excessive Drinking

                    All of us know that drinking too much alcohol is bad for us, but do you know how bad it really is?

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                    According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, drinking too much — be it on a single occasion or over time — can seriously damage your health:[7]

                    • Brain problems: Alcohol interferes with the brain’s communication pathways, making it harder to think clearly and move with coordination.
                    • Heart diseases: Cardiomyopathy – Stretching and drooping of heart muscle, Arrhythmias – Irregular heart beat, stroke, high blood pressure
                    • Liver diseases: Steatosis or fatty liver, alcoholic hepatitis, fibrosis, cirrhosis
                    • Pancreas problems: Pancreatitis, a dangerous inflammation and swelling of the blood vessels in the pancreas that prevents proper digestion.
                    • Different types of cancer: Mouth, esophagus, throat, liver, breast

                    If you drink a lot, perhaps cutting it out right away will be tough. Cut down the number of glasses you drink each time, followed by the number of times you drink a week.

                    If need be, seek help from an AA group — you aren’t alone in this. Change starts from today.

                    7. Eating Junk Food (Including Diet Soda)

                    Junk food — they are everywhere in our society today. From McDonald’s, to KFC, to Burger King, to 24-hour takeouts, junk food such as fries, highly processed burgers and sodas has become a staple in our society today.

                    If you think, “Hey, but junk food is tasty!”, think again:

                    A study by Paul Johnson and Paul Kenny suggests that junk food consumption alters brain activity in a way similar to addictive drugs like cocaine and heroin.[8]

                    “After many weeks with unlimited access to junk food, the pleasure centers of rat brains became desensitized, requiring more food for pleasure.”

                    And you wonder why you seem to crave fast food when you just had some the day before?

                    While it may not be possible to remove junk food completely from our diet right away, we can reduce our junk food consumption starting today. Instead of soda, opt for a fruit juice (fresh juice, not the carbonated kind) or mineral water. Instead of fries, switch to mashed potato, a salad, or rice (many food outlets allow for this today). Instead of a fried meat patty, go for a grilled one.

                    Where possible, opt for healthy food joints like salad bars and delis as opposed to fast food outlets. Every little step goes a long way.

                    Here’re some healthy snacks ideas for you: 15 Healthy Snacks You Should Always Have At Home

                    8. Eating Too Much Red Meat

                    There has been conclusive evidence that consumption of red meat increases the risk of colorectal cancer; and suggestive evidence that it increases the risk of oesophageal cancer, lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, and endometrial cancer.

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                    In addition, some studies have linked consumption of large quantities of red meat with breast cancer, stomach cancer, lymphoma, bladder cancer, lung cancer and prostate cancer![9]

                    Personally, I’m a vegetarian so I don’t consume red meat, but for those of you who consume red meat, do watch out and limit your intake — better still, cut it out of your diet. World Cancer Research Fund recommends limiting intake of red meat to less than 300g (11 oz) cooked weight per week, “very little, if any of which to be processed.”

                    Of if you’re thinking about becoming a vegetarian, check out this guide: 5 Practical Tips For Starting a Vegetarian Lifestyle

                    9. Watching Too Much TV

                    I stopped watching TV since eight years ago and I have never regretted it. Every once in a while I will switch on the telly to see what is on, and then I will switch it off because it’s just the same boring shtick over and over again.

                    Watching TV, particularly well-written dramas, can be a good way to unwind. However, remember that TV isn’t your life.

                    Spending three hours every night watching TV will not change your life for the better. Rather, using that time to reflect on your life, take stock, and take action on your goals will.

                    It’s not easy to remove TV from your daily routine right away, but follow these 6 Steps To Remove TV From Your Life.

                    10. Being Late

                    Not only is being late being rude to others, it also means that you’re always rushing from one place to another, playing catch up in your agenda, and having to apologize to every person you meet.

                    Stop being late and not being punctual, but practice being early instead. Target to arrive 15 minutes earlier before any appointment and bring along something to do in those 15 minutes (or longer if the other person turns out to be late). Then you can stop playing catch up and stay ahead in life.

                    Learn more tips about how to be more punctual here: How to Be On Time Every Time

                    11. Being in Bad Relationships

                    Are you always dating the wrong guys/girls? Do you end up with jerks all the time? Well, you may not be able to stop yourself from meeting bad partners but you can certainly stop yourself from furthering contact with them, spending time with them, or even… entering into a relationship with them.

                    I used to invest myself in this guy who was nothing but toxic for me. After a good five months of experiencing nothing but getting burned over and over again, I realized that he was a total waste of my time and I deserved better. I decided to cut him off, and it was soon after that I met my soulmate.

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                    Learn about why you shouldn’t stay in a bad relationship and how to deal with it if you’re in one: Why Trying Hard to Stay in an Unhappy Relationship Is Not Love, but Fear

                    12. Leaving Things to the Last Minute

                    Burning the midnight oil isn’t fun — it’s exhausting.

                    Those of you who got through college by burning the midnight oil would have learned this the hard way. Not only is it damaging for your body, it is also mentally draining as you’re constantly in a hyper-tense mode, feeling anxious about whether you can finish your work on time.

                    Start today on a new note. Rather than react to your deadlines, be proactive about them by planning ahead, identifying what needs to be done for the week, and getting things done in advance.

                    By staying ahead of your tasks, you can also use your extra time to plan ahead in your life and get more things done.

                    Take a look at this guide and learn how to stop procrastinating: Procrastination – A Step-By-Step Guide to Stop Procrastinating

                    13. Focusing on the Negatives

                    In every situation, there are two ways you can react: zoom down to the problem areas and crib about how things aren’t the way you want, or celebrate the areas that are going well and work on making everything better.

                    Many of us see the importance of doing the latter but in practice, we do the former. Why though? Criticizing and focusing on the negatives is easy but it doesn’t empower nor inspire us to be better.

                    Make a change — for every negative encounter you run into, I challenge you to identify three things that are good about it. Practice doing this for one week, and by the end of the week you’ll find that your first instinct is to think positive, not negative.

                    And here’re even more ways to help you stay positive: 11 Tips for Maintaining your Positive Attitude

                    The Bottom Line

                    So here you find the 13 most common bad habits and their consequences on your mind and body. The good news’ you can quit them all.

                    Just spot out your own bad habits and take my suggestions to quit them. Then you’ll find your life a lot healthier and happier!

                    Need more tips to break your bad habits? Check out these articles:

                    Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

                    Reference

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